Wednesday, April 20, 2011

NASA Celebrates 21st Hubble Anniversary

NASA is celebrating the 21st anniversary of the launch of the Hubble Space Telescope with the release of an amazing image of two galaxies intertwining against the black backdrop of space.

Launched April 24, 1990, aboard shuttle Discovery, the Hubble Space Telescope captured the image last December with a new planetary camera installed during a fifth and final servicing mission in May 2009.

The image shows a large spiral galaxy, known as UGC 1810; its disk is distorted by the gravitational tidal pull of the companion galaxy below it, known as UGC 1813. The blue points of light across the top comes from clusters of intensely bright and hot young stars.

The smaller galaxy, seen almost edge-on, shows signs of star formation at its nucleus, perhaps triggered by the encounter with the larger galaxy.

The formation collectively is known as Arp 273. It lies in the constellation Andromeda and is about 300 million light years away from Earth. The image is a composite of data collected with three separate filters that covered the ultraviolet, blue and red portions of the spectrum.

ABOUT THE IMAGE: Click to enlarge the NASA image taken with a new planetary camera installed on the Hubble Space Telescope by astronauts on a fifth and final servicing mission in May 2009. You can also click the enlarged image to get a bigger, more detailed view.


Dibosia said...

Way to go Mister O. EVERYONE in FL loves you!

Deen said...

Wow that is truly amazing. Can you imagine? Wow.

td13 said...

since hubble's been up there for 21 years and I've only seen 20 pictures during it's life I wonder if all of them are only artist's rendering of a lot of blurry data.

Since we are all paying (lots of $$) for hubble Why isn't there a public database of every picture taken?

barry said...

Wow, took all of ten seconds to find this: