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Arachnid Nebula

The Arachnid Nebula

The Arachnid Nebula was an interstellar gas cloud located far from the planet Vulcan. The Arachnid Nebula was featured on the front cover of "The Cosmos A to Z", an astronomy book by Laura Danly that claimed the nebula was six-point-five billion kilometers in diameter. The book was an inspiration to Jonathan Archer in his childhood.

In 2151, the starship Enterprise NX-01 and a Vahklas-type vessel, the Vahklas, completed a survey of the nebula. The crew of the vessels found that it was actually more than eight billion kilometers in diameter, not six-point-five billion. They also noted over twenty million cubic meters of disodium and traces of ethylchlorate in the nebula. Enterprise intended to send back the new information to help revise the astronomy books. (ENT: "Fusion")

As established in the first draft script of "Fusion" (which had the working title "Equilibrium"), this nebula was over three billion kilometers in diameter, was located approximately a hundred light years from Earth, and contained pockets of turbulence as well as gravimetric shear. Jonathan Archer used to view the nebula using a backyard telescope. However, upon seeing the nebula up close, he remarked that it looked a lot bigger. Explaining that Archer had been viewing the nebula as it had looked over a century beforehand, T'Pol reasoned that Archer's comment made sense, as the nebula had been much smaller back then.
According to Star Trek: Star Charts (p. 60) and Stellar Cartography: The Starfleet Reference Library ("Federation Historical Highlights, 2161-2385"), this nebula was located in the Alpha Quadrant. Two neutron stars, or pulsars, were located within this nebula.
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