Space Hubble Telescope News

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Hands-On Book of Hubble Images Allows the Visually Impaired to "Touch the Universe"

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A new book of majestic images taken by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope brings the wonders of our universe to the fingertips of the blind. Called "Touch the Universe: A NASA Braille Book of Astronomy," the 64-page book presents color images of planets, nebulae, stars, and galaxies. Each image is embossed with lines, bumps, and other textures. The raised patterns translate colors, shapes, and other intricate details of the cosmic objects, allowing visually impaired people to feel what they cannot see. Braille and large-print descriptions accompany each of the book's 14 photographs, making the design of this book accessible to readers of all visual abilities.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

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Close-up of M27, the Dumbbell Nebula

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An aging star's last hurrah is creating a flurry of glowing knots of gas that appear to be streaking through space in this close-up image of the Dumbbell Nebula, taken with NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. The Dumbbell, a nearby planetary nebula residing more than 1,200 light-years away, is the result of an old star that has shed its outer layers in a unique display of color.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

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Ground System for NASA’s Roman Space Telescope Completes Major Review

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NASA's Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope has just successfully completed a preliminary design review of the mission’s ground systems, including the Science Operations Center that will be hosted by the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) in Baltimore, Maryland. This means the plan for science operations has met all of the design, schedule, and budget requirements. The mission will now proceed to the next phase: building the newly designed systems that will enable planning and scheduling of Roman observations and managing the resulting data.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

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Hubble Reopens Its Eye on the Universe

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The Hubble telescope reopened its "eye" on the universe following a successful December 1999 servicing mission by imaging a Sun-like star, dubbed NGC 2392, and a hefty cluster of galaxies, Abell 2218.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

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Hands-On Book of Hubble Images Allows the Visually Impaired to "Touch the Universe"

low_STSCI-H-p0228a-k-1340x520.png


A new book of majestic images taken by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope brings the wonders of our universe to the fingertips of the blind. Called "Touch the Universe: A NASA Braille Book of Astronomy," the 64-page book presents color images of planets, nebulae, stars, and galaxies. Each image is embossed with lines, bumps, and other textures. The raised patterns translate colors, shapes, and other intricate details of the cosmic objects, allowing visually impaired people to feel what they cannot see. Braille and large-print descriptions accompany each of the book's 14 photographs, making the design of this book accessible to readers of all visual abilities.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

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Hubble Uncovers Smallest Moons Yet Seen Around Uranus

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Astronomers have discovered two of the smallest moons yet found around Uranus. The new moons, uncovered by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, are about 8 to 10 miles across (12 to 16 km) - about the size of San Francisco. The two moons are so faint they eluded detection by the Voyager 2 spacecraft, which discovered 10 small satellites when it flew by the gas giant planet in 1986. The newly detected moons are orbiting even closer to the planet than the five major Uranian satellites, which are several hundred miles wide. The two new satellites are the first inner moons of Uranus discovered from an Earth-based telescope in more than 50 years. The International Astronomical Union (IAU) will announce the finding today. The Hubble telescope observations also helped astronomers confirm the discovery of another tiny moon that had originally been spotted in Voyager pictures.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

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Heritage Project Celebrates Five Years of Harvesting the Best Images from Hubble Space Telescope

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The Hubble Heritage team of astronomers, who assemble many of the NASA Hubble Space Telescope's most stunning pictures, is celebrating its five-year anniversary with the release of the picturesque Sombrero galaxy. One of the largest Hubble mosaics ever assembled, this magnificent galaxy has an apparent diameter that is nearly one-fifth the diameter of the full moon. The team used Hubble's Advanced Camera for Surveys to take six pictures of the galaxy and then stitched them together to create the final composite image. The photo reveals a swarm of stars in a pancake-shaped disk as well as a glowing central halo of stars.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

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Megastar-Birth Cluster is Biggest, Brightest and Hottest Ever Seen

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A mysterious arc of light found behind a distant cluster of galaxies has turned out to be the biggest, brightest, and hottest star-forming region ever seen in space. The so-called Lynx arc is 1 million times brighter than the well-known Orion Nebula, a nearby prototypical star-birth region visible with small telescopes. The newly identified super-cluster contains a million blue-white stars that are twice as hot as similar stars in our Milky Way galaxy. It is a rarely seen example of the early days of the universe where furious firestorms of star birth blazed across the skies. The spectacular cluster's opulence is dimmed when seen from Earth only because it is 12 billion light-years away.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

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Hubble Photographs Turbulent Neighborhood Near Eruptive Star

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Dramatic dark dust knots and complex structures are sculpted by the high-velocity stellar winds and high-energy radiation from the ultra-luminous variable star called Eta Carinae. This image shows a region in the Carina Nebula between two large clusters of some of the most massive and hottest known stars. This NASA Hubble Space Telescope close-up view shows only a three light-year-wide portion of the entire Carina Nebula, which has a diameter of over 200 light-years. Taken with Hubble's Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 in July 2002, this color image is a composite of ultraviolet, visible, and infrared filters that have been assigned the colors blue, green, and red, respectively.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

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Firestorm of Star Birth Seen in a Local Galaxy

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This festively colorful nebula, called NGC 604, is one of the largest known seething cauldrons of star birth seen in a nearby galaxy. NGC 604 is similar to familiar star-birth regions in our Milky Way galaxy, such as the Orion Nebula, but it is vastly larger in extent and contains many more recently formed stars. This monstrous star-birth region contains more than 200 brilliant blue stars within a cloud of glowing gases some 1,300 light-years across, nearly 100 times the size of the Orion Nebula.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

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The Colorful Lives of the Outer Planets

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Atmospheric features on Uranus and Neptune are revealed in images taken with the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph and the Advanced Camera for Surveys aboard NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. A wider view of Uranus, taken with the Advanced Camera for Surveys, reveals the planet's faint rings and several of its satellites. The observations were taken in August 2003.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

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Supernova Blast Bonanza in Nearby Galaxy

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The nearby dwarf galaxy NGC 1569 is a hotbed of vigorous star birth activity which blows huge bubbles that riddle the main body of the galaxy. The galaxy's "star factories" are also manufacturing brilliant blue star clusters. This galaxy had a sudden onset of star birth about 25 million years ago, which subsided about the time the very earliest human ancestors appeared on Earth.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

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An Abrasive Collision Gives One Galaxy a "Black Eye"

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A collision of two galaxies has left a merged star system with an unusual appearance as well as bizarre internal motions. Messier 64 (M64) has a spectacular dark band of absorbing dust in front of the galaxy's bright nucleus, giving rise to its nicknames of the "Black Eye" or "Evil Eye" galaxy.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

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Hubble and Keck Team Up to Find Farthest Known Galaxy in Universe

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An international team of astronomers may have set a new record in discovering what is the most distant known galaxy in the universe. Located an estimated 13 billion light-years away, the object is being viewed at a time only 750 million years after the big bang, when the universe was barely 5 percent of its current age. The primeval galaxy was identified by combining the power of NASA's Hubble Space Telescope and CARA's W. M. Keck Telescopes on Mauna Kea in Hawaii. These great observatories got a boost from the added magnification of a natural "cosmic gravitational lens" in space that further amplifies the brightness of the distant object.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

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Supernova Shock Wave Is Producing a Spectacular New Light Show

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Seventeen years ago, astronomers spotted the brightest stellar explosion ever seen since the one observed by Johannes Kepler 400 years ago. Called SN 1987A, the titanic supernova explosion blazed with the power of 100,000,000 suns for several months following its discovery on Feb. 23, 1987. Although the supernova itself is a million times fainter than 17 years ago, a new light show in the space surrounding it is just beginning.

This image, taken Nov. 28, 2003 by the Advanced Camera for Surveys aboard NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, shows many bright spots along a ring of gas, like pearls on a necklace. These cosmic "pearls" are being produced as a supersonic shock wave unleashed during the explosion slams into the ring at more than a million miles per hour. The collision is heating the gas ring, causing its innermost regions to glow. Curiously, one of the bright spots on the ring [at 4 o'clock] is a star that happens to lie along the telescope's line of sight.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

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New Clues About the Nature of Dark Energy: Einstein May Have Been Right After All

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The good news from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope is that Einstein was right – maybe. A strange form of energy called "dark energy" is looking a little more like the repulsive force that Einstein theorized in an attempt to balance the universe against its own gravity. Even if Einstein turns out to be wrong, the universe's dark energy probably won't destroy the universe any sooner than about 30 billion years from now, say Hubble researchers.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

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Space Phenomenon Imitates Art in Universe's Version of van Gogh Painting

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This image resembling Vincent van Gogh's painting, "Starry Night," is Hubble's latest view of an expanding halo of light around a distant star, named V838 Monocerotis (V838 Mon). This Hubble image was obtained with the Advanced Camera for Surveys on February 8, 2004. The illumination of interstellar dust comes from the red supergiant star at the middle of the image, which gave off a flashbulb-like pulse of light two years ago. V838 Mon is located about 20,000 light-years away from Earth in the direction of the constellation Monoceros, placing the star at the outer edge of our Milky Way galaxy.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

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Hubble's Deepest View Ever of the Universe Unveils Earliest Galaxies

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Astronomers at the Space Telescope Science Institute today unveiled the deepest portrait of the visible universe ever achieved by humankind. Called the Hubble Ultra Deep Field (HUDF), the million-second-long exposure reveals the first galaxies to emerge from the so-called "dark ages," the time shortly after the big bang when the first stars reheated the cold, dark universe. The new image should offer new insights into what types of objects reheated the universe long ago.

This historic new view is actually two separate images taken by Hubble's Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) and the Near Infrared Camera and Multi-object Spectrometer (NICMOS). Both images reveal galaxies that are too faint to be seen by ground-based telescopes, or even in Hubble's previous faraway looks, called the Hubble Deep Fields (HDFs), taken in 1995 and 1998.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

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Hubble Sees Stars as Numerous as Grains of Sand in Nearby Galaxy

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What appear as individual grains of sand on a beach in the image obtained with NASA's Hubble Space Telescope are actually myriads of stars embedded deep in the heart of the nearby galaxy NGC 300. The Hubble telescope's exquisite resolution enables it to see the stars as individual points of light, despite the fact that the galaxy is millions of light-years away.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

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The Lure of the Rings

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Resembling a diamond-encrusted bracelet, a ring of brilliant blue star clusters wraps around the yellowish nucleus of what was once a normal spiral galaxy in this new image from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope (HST). This image is being released to commemorate the 14th anniversary of Hubble's launch on April 24, 1990 and its deployment from the space shuttle Discovery on April 25, 1990. The galaxy, cataloged as AM 0644-741, is a member of the class of so-called "ring galaxies." It lies 300 million light-years away in the direction of the southern constellation Volans.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 
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