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Hubble's New Eye Returns Fresh Images of Space

Hubble1

NASA has released four images shot with the new Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3), installed aboard Hubble in May 2009, during Servicing Mission 4.

Here's some of their explanation regarding the image above:

"NASA's Hubble Space Telescope snapped this panoramic view of a colorful assortment of 100,000 stars residing in the crowded core of a giant star cluster. The image reveals a small region inside the massive globular cluster Omega Centauri, which boasts nearly 10 million stars. Globular clusters, ancient swarms of stars united by gravity, are the homesteaders of our Milky Way galaxy. The stars in Omega Centauri are between 10 billion and 12 billion years old. The cluster lies about 16,000 light-years from Earth...All of the stars in the image are cozy neighbors. The average distance between any two stars in the cluster's crowded core is only about a third of a light-year, roughly 13 times closer than our Sun's nearest stellar neighbor, Alpha Centauri. Although the stars are close together, WFC3's sharpness can resolve each of them as individual stars. If anyone lived in this globular cluster, they would behold a star-saturated sky that is roughly 100 times brighter than Earth's sky."

Three more shots and a press conference about the images, AFTER THE JUMP...

Hubble2  Hubble3 Hubble4

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Comments

  1. Space looks like Christmas!

    Posted by: Gregoire | Sep 10, 2009 10:35:02 AM


  2. Fucking amazing. I love these posts. Thanks Andy!

    Posted by: The Milkman | Sep 10, 2009 10:55:50 AM


  3. I was going to say exactly the same thing, Gregoire!

    Posted by: MT | Sep 10, 2009 11:46:12 AM


  4. The wonders of the universe always makes me think of an old Calvin & Hobbes strip, in which Calvin pines for a fantastic future, and ends with "And I have to live here."

    Posted by: Latebrosus | Sep 10, 2009 12:12:28 PM


  5. Hmmm. Paul Jabara was right. Heaven is a disco!

    Posted by: jakeinlove | Sep 10, 2009 12:26:04 PM


  6. au contraire, heaven is apparently the closing credits of Family Affair

    Posted by: Michael | Sep 10, 2009 12:43:16 PM


  7. Simply stunning!

    Posted by: john | Sep 10, 2009 2:15:56 PM


  8. Actually, I find it rather fabulous that the entire universe would seem to look more or less exactly like the fabric used to make Judy Garland's pantsuits, circa 1965.

    Posted by: Muscato | Sep 10, 2009 4:17:58 PM


  9. The the "Gayest Response Ever Prize" goes to........MUSCATO!

    xox

    Posted by: David R. | Sep 10, 2009 5:00:37 PM


  10. God has a gay art director!

    Posted by: jaragon | Sep 10, 2009 6:10:57 PM


  11. Am I supposed to see a sailboat or a dinosaur when I relax my eyes. Pretty awesome!

    Posted by: Morgan | Sep 10, 2009 7:02:00 PM


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