A colorful skyscape features stars, dust, and glowing gas in NGC 6914.
The complex of nebulae lies some 6,000 light-years away, toward the high-flying northern constellation
Cygnus and the plane of our Milky Way Galaxy. With foreground dust clouds in silhouette, both reddish
hydrogen emission nebulae and dusty blue reflection nebulae fill the 1/2 degree wide field.
Ultraviolet radiation from the massive, hot, young stars of the extensive Cygnus OB2 association ionize
the region's atomic hydrogen gas, producing the characteristic red glow as protons and electrons recombine.
Embedded Cygnus OB2 stars also provide the blue starlight strongly reflected by the dusty clouds. [Text adapted from APOD]