The open star cluster known as M 16 is located some 7,000 light years from our solar system in the constellation of Serpens. Next to the cluster is the Eagle Nebula, a region of intense star formation from which the cluster was born. The nebula is still in the process of forming more stars for the cluster.
In 1764 the French comet hunter, Charles Messier, made it the sixteenth object, M 16, of his now famous catalog
This false-color image was captured using the Palomar Observatory's 60-inch telescope.