Beetle Nebula

Beetle Nebula

The Beetle Nebula (designation RN-8496-7089) is so named because it is black and vaguely beetle-shaped appearance. It is a diffuse nebula of approximately 50.4ly in diameter located within the former Romulan Neutral Zone.


Physical Properties

Metric Value
Definition Absorption Nebula
Diameter 50.34 ly
Absolutely mag -5m37
Composition Like most nebula of this classification, sensors suggest high concentrations of interstellar dust along with elements necessary for star formation.
Contents Over 200 stars registered using various sensor techniques, with possibly over one thousand planets.
Hazards Highly localized concentrations of ionized particles may interfere with communications, transporters, sensors, and navigation. Periodic electrical discharges are possible.


According to the Vulcan Science Directorate, the earliest observations of this nebula were noted in 1798 BCE by Vulcan astronomers specifically looking for Absorption Nebula.

Although recorded, no substantial follow-up was made until the conclusion of the Earth-Romulan War, when Earth objected to the nebula’s presence in Romulan Space, citing that the occlusive properties of the nebula made it a desirable staging area for amassing ships or testing weapons. As a result of the negotiation process, the Beetle Nebula was placed in the Neutral Zone.

With the collapse of the Romulan Star Empire in 2387 and the Neutral Zone, opportunities to study this nebula have opened.


Long-range scans of the Beetle Nebula indicate the presence of several star systems in various states of development. Though these systems may be comparatively young, that has not ruled out the possibility for planets suitable for life.