The Ring Nebula is a Planetary Nebula in the constellation of Lyra discovered in 1779 by Antoine Darquier de Pellepoix. It is about 2,300 light years away from earth. The central star is a White Dwarf that has about 1.2 times the mass of the sun. M57 is a bipolar nebula. The image shows the nebula embedded into numerous stars of the Milky Way. The faint outer shells become visible mainly in the light of Hα.