Difference between Nebula and Planetary Nebula

Key Difference: The interstellar nursery of the cloud of dust and gas is called a Nebula. A planetary nebula is a type of nebula. They are created when a main sequence star grows into a red giant and casts off its outer layers.

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A nebula is a cloud in deep space consisting of gas or dirt/dust. Example: A cloud formed after a star explodes. The word Nebula has been derived from the Latin word, meaning “cloud”. The plural term of the nebula is nebulae. In the earlier time, galaxies were also called as nebula by astronomers because of their fuzzy appearance. However, nowadays the word nebula is referred for extended objects consisting mostly of gas and dust. The “Pillars of Creation” is the most famous images of NASA’s. Nebula comes in many shapes and sizes and forms in many different ways. Also check out the difference between nebula and solar nebula

'Planetary nebulae' is a type of nebula. They are made of gas and plasma. They are created when a main sequence star grows into a red giant and casts off its outer layers. This is how they get their shape and they are usually circular in shape. It happens because some material is thrown out from the star in a roughly proportioned manner that will form into a circular disk manner rather than spherical manner. The reason it was named as planetary nebulae was that when seen through an optical telescope it appears to have the same shape as planets.

Also see: The difference between a pulsar and a quasar

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It is basically the hydrogen shells that are expelled from these stars. They are found in different varieties, sizes, shapes, colors, structures, and central visibility. The largest planetary nebulae in the night sky are the Helix Nebula in Aquarius. It has been observed that planetary nebulae are one of the few deepest sky objects in which visual colors can be detected through the bare eyes.

Difference between Nebula and Planetary Nebulae:

 

Nebula

Planetary Nebulae

Description

A cloud of interstellar gas and dust.

(Formerly) any celestial object that appears nebulous, hazy, or fuzzy, and extended in a telescope view.

A ring-shaped planetary nebula is formed by an expanding shell of gas around an aging star.

Terms

A nebula is a cloud in deep space consisting of gas or dirt/dust.

A planetary nebula is a type of nebula.

Made of

Dust, hydrogen, plasma, and helium gas

Gas and plasma

How do they form

They form under their own weight when large stars are made in the center. Then they raise ultraviolet radiation and finally the nebula forms.

They form when a star runs out of fuel to burn. The star blows off its layers of gas in the shape of a ring or bubble.

Examples

  • The nebula becomes rocky and lumpy, the reasons are still mysterious.
  • Is a solar nebula the reason or is gravity the reason?
  • In other planetary nebulae, like the ring nebula, we view the donut from the top.
  • It continues to lose mass via a stellar wind as it dies, forming a planetary nebula.

Also see: The difference between galaxy and universe 

 

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