North (and Central) American Nebula

Looks Like the Map of North America from Yucatán to Panama

Every once in a while, I check out NASA’s Astronomy Picture of the Day which frequently has images which make me think. The above picture is technically called the Cygnus Wall of Star Formation. According to the website:

The North America nebula on the sky can do what the North America continent on Earth cannot — form stars. Specifically, in analogy to the Earth-confined continent, the bright part that appears as Central America and Mexico is actually a hot bed of gas, dust, and newly formed stars known as the Cygnus Wall. The featured image shows the star forming wall lit and eroded by bright young stars, and partly hidden by the dark dust they have created. The part of the North America nebula (NGC 7000) shown spans about 15 light years and lies about 1,500 light years away toward the constellation of the Swan (Cygnus).

Makes me yearn to visit Yucatán—yet again.