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April 28, 2006

Sweet Sixteen for the HST

Filed under: Space Exploration — Bob @ 7:08 pm

2006-14-a-small_web.jpg The Hubble Space Telescope is sixteen years old and this picture was released to commemerate the event. It’s a picture of the galaxy Messier 82.

Quoting the website: This mosaic image is the sharpest wide-angle view ever obtained of M82. The galaxy is remarkable for its bright blue disk, webs of shredded clouds, and fiery-looking plumes of glowing hydrogen blasting out of its central regions. Throughout the galaxy’s center, young stars are being born 10 times faster than they are inside our entire Milky Way Galaxy. The resulting huge concentration of young stars carved into the gas and dust at the galaxy’s center. The fierce galactic superwind generated from these stars compresses enough gas to make millions of more stars.

The light for this photo took 12 million years to reach Earth so you and I could see it (with a little help from science and engineering). Beautiful!

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