The Hubble Space Telescope's View of Star Birth.
This is a dust cloud in the Eagle Nebula (M16) photographed by the Hubble Space Telescope. This dark smoky-looking structure is a column of cool interstellar gas and dust where new stars are being formed.
This cloud was originally much bigger. Parts of the cloud were evaporated by the light and heat from other nearby stars. If you look closely you can see streamers of gas boiling away from the main cloud.
Buried deep in the main cloud are denser pockets or globules of gas that are uncovered as the main cloud is evaporated. These globules are called "Evaporating Gaseous Globules" or EGGs for short.
Inside some of these EGGs are protostars (objects that are on their way to becoming stars).