Space Hubble Telescope News

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
Hubble Space Telescope Measures Precise Distance to the Most Remote Galaxy Yet

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/138/low_STSCI-H-p-9449a-k1340x520.png

Astronomers using the Hubble telescope have announced the most accurate distance measurement yet to the remote galaxy M100, located in the Virgo cluster of galaxies.

This measurement will help provide a precise calculation of the expansion rate of the universe, called the Hubble Constant, which is crucial to determining the age and size of the universe. They calculated the distance - 56 million light-years - by measuring the brightness of several Cepheid variable stars in the galaxy. Cepheid variables are a class of pulsating star used as "milepost markers" to calculate the distance to nearby galaxies. The bottom image shows a region of M100. This Hubble telescope image is a close-up of a region of the galaxy M100. The top three frames, taken over several weeks, reveal the rhythmic changes in brightness of a Cepheid variable.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
Hubble Telescope Photo Reveals Stellar Death Process

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/211/low_STSCI-H-p9605a-k-1340x520.png

This Hubble telescope picture of planetary nebula NGC 7027 reveals remarkable new details of the process by which a star like the Sun dies. The nebula is a glowing record of the star's final death throes.

New features include faint, blue, concentric shells surrounding the nebula; an extensive network of red dust clouds throughout the bright inner region; and the hot, central white dwarf, visible as a white dot at the center.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
Hubble Space Telescope on Track for Measuring the Expansion Rate of the Universe

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/229/low_STSCI-H-p9621a-k-1340x520.png

Using the Hubble telescope, two international teams of astronomers are reporting major progress in converging on an accurate measurement of the universe's rate of expansion - a value that has been debated for over half a century.

These new results yield ranges for the age of the universe from 9-12 billion years and 11-14 billion years, respectively. The black and white photograph from a ground-based telescope shows the entire galaxy. The color image from the Hubble telescope shows a region in NGC 1365, a barred spiral galaxy located in a cluster of galaxies called Fornax. A barred spiral galaxy is characterized by a "bar" of stars, dust, and gas across its center. Astronomers used Cepheid variable stars in Fornax to estimate the cluster's distance from Earth, about 60 million light-years. Cepheids are bright, young stars that are used as milepost markers to calculate distances to nearby galaxies. Galaxy distances are important in calculating the universe's expansion rate and age.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
Doomed Star Eta Carinae

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/234/low_STSCI-H-p9623a-k-1340x520.png

A huge, billowing pair of gas and dust clouds is captured in this stunning Hubble telescope picture of the super-massive star Eta Carinae.

Even though Eta Carinae is more than 8,000 light-years away, features 10 billion miles across (about the diameter of our solar system) can be distinguished. Eta Carinae suffered a giant outburst about 150 years ago, when it became one of the brightest stars in the southern sky. Though the star released as much visible light as a supernova explosion, it survived the outburst. Somehow, the explosion produced two lobes and a large, thin equatorial disk, all moving outward at about 1.5 million miles per hour. Estimated to be 100 times heftier than our Sun, Eta Carinae may be one of the most massive stars in our galaxy.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
Hubble Sees Early Building Blocks of Today's Galaxies

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/239/low_STSCI-H-p9629a-k-1340x520.png

New Hubble telescope images unveil what may be galaxies under construction in the early universe.

Hubble's detailed pictures reveal a grouping of 18 gigantic star clusters that appear to be the same distance from Earth, and close enough to each other that they will eventually merge into a few galaxy- sized objects. They are so far away, 11 billion light-years, that they existed during the epoch when it is commonly believed galaxies started to form. These results add weight to a leading theory that galaxies grew by starting out as clumps of stars, which, through a complex series of encounters, consolidated into larger assemblages that we see as fully formed galaxies.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
Massive Black Holes Dwell in Most Galaxies, According to Hubble Census

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/252/low_STSCI-H-p-9701a-k1340x520.png

Announcing the discovery of three black holes in three normal galaxies, astronomers suggest that nearly all galaxies may harbor super-massive black holes that once powered quasars (extremely luminous objects in the centers of galaxies), but are now quiescent.

This conclusion is based on a census of 27 nearby galaxies carried out by the Hubble telescope and ground-based observatories in Hawaii. The three galaxies in these images are believed to contain central, super-massive black holes. The galaxy NGC 4486B [lower left] shows a double nucleus [lower right]. The picture at lower right is a close-up of the central region of NGC 4486B.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
Hubble Camera Resumes Science Operation with Picture of "Butterfly" in Space

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/256/low_STSCI-H-p-9707a-k1340x520.png

The Hubble telescope is back at work, capturing this view of the butterfly-wing-shaped nebula, NGC 2346.

The nebula is about 2,000 light-years away from Earth in the direction of the constellation Monoceros. It represents the spectacular "last gasp" of a double-star system at the nebula's center. The image was taken March 6, 1997 as part of the re-commissioning of Hubble's previously installed scientific instruments following a successful servicing mission.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
Hubble's Sharpest View of Mars

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/258/low_STSCI-H-p-9709a-k1340x520.png

The recently refurbished Hubble telescope obtained the sharpest view of Mars ever taken from Earth. This stunning portrait was taken with March 10, 1997, just before the Red Planet made one of its closest passes to Earth (about 60 million miles or 100 million kilometers).

The Martian North Pole is at the top [near the center of the bright polar cap] and east is to the right. This view of Mars was taken on the last day of Martian spring in the Northern Hemisphere.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
Hubble Reveals Invisible High-Speed Collision around Supernova 1987A

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/276/low_STSCI-H-p-9719a-k1340x520.png

The highest velocity material expelled in a cataclysmic, stellar explosion 10 years ago has been detected for the first time by the Hubble telescope's imaging spectrograph.

The top image, taken with Hubble's visible-light camera, shows the orange-red rings surrounding Supernova 1987A in the Large Magellanic Cloud. The glowing debris of the supernova explosion, which occurred in February 1987, is at the center of the inner ring. The small, white square indicates the location of the imaging spectrograph aperture. The Hubble data in the middle panel [and a schematic representation in the bottom panel] shows the presence of glowing hydrogen expanding at a speed of 33 million mph (15,000 kilometers per second) coming from an extended area inside the inner ring.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
Hubble Sees Rapid Weather Changes On Mars, New Dust Activity

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/282/low_STSCI-H-p-9724a-k1340x520.png

Astronomers using the Hubble telescope to track weather on Mars and how it might affect the Pathfinder landing site in Ares Vallis report that a large dust storm seen south of the site only 12 days earlier has dissipated. However, a new dust storm has appeared in the polar region, about 1,200 miles (2,000 kilometers) due north of the landing site.

The Hubble researchers conclude that Pathfinder landed during a period when large changes in the regional distributions of dust and clouds were taking place on Mars. The green cross on the bottom picture identifies the Pathfinder landing site.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
Hubble Separates Stars in the Mira Binary System

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/284/low_STSCI-H-p-9726a-k1340x520.png

Although the giant star Mira has been known for about 400 years, astronomers have had to wait for the Hubble telescope to provide the first ultraviolet-light images of the extended atmosphere of the cool red giant star and its nearby, hot companion.

By giving astronomers a clear view of the individual members of this system, Hubble has provided valuable insights into other types of double-star systems where the stars are so close they interact with one another. In ultraviolet light, Hubble resolves a small, hook-like appendage extending from Mira and pointing towards the smaller companion. This material could be gravitationally drawn towards Mira's mate.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
Blobs in Space: The Legacy of a Nova

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/287/low_STSCI-H-p-9729a-k1340x520.png

Nova eruptions by dying stars were thought to be simple, predictable acts of violence. Astronomers could point a telescope at the most recently exploded novae and see an expanding bubble of gaseous debris around each star.

Scientists using the Hubble telescope, however, were surprised to find that some nova outbursts may not produce smooth shells of gas, but thousands of gaseous blobs, each the size of our solar system. In this Hubble picture of the nova T Pyxidis, the shells of gas ejected by the star are actually more than 2,000 gaseous blobs packed into an area that is 1 light-year across.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
Hubble Space Telescope Completes Eighth Year Of Exploration

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/328/low_STSCI-H-p-9818-k1340x520.png

In honor of NASA Hubble Space Telescope's eighth anniversary, we have gift-wrapped Saturn in vivid colors. Actually, this image is courtesy of Hubble's infrared camera, which has taken its first peek at Saturn.

This view provides detailed information on the clouds and hazes in Saturn's atmosphere. The blue colors indicate a clear atmosphere down to the main cloud layer. Most of the Northern Hemisphere that is visible above the rings is relatively clear. The dark region around the South Pole indicates a big hole in the main cloud layer. The green and yellow colors indicate a haze above the main cloud layer. The red and orange colors indicate clouds reaching up high into the atmosphere. The rings, made up of chunks of ice, are as white as images taken in visible light.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
Ancient Black Hole Speeds Through Sun's Galactic Neighborhood, Devouring Companion Star

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/474/low_STSCI-H-p-0129a-k-1340x520.png

Data from the Space Telescope Science Institute's Digitized Sky Survey has played an important supporting role in helping radio and X-ray astronomers discover an ancient black hole speeding through the Sun's galactic neighborhood. The rogue black hole is devouring a small companion star as the pair travels in an eccentric orbit looping to the outer reaches of our Milky Way galaxy. It is believed that the black hole is the remnant of a massive star that lived out its brief life billions of years ago and later was gravitationally kicked from its home star cluster to wander the Galaxy with its companion.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
Scientists Track "Perfect Storm" on Mars

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/475/low_STSCI-H-p-0131a-k-1340x520.png

A pair of eagle-eyed NASA spacecraft – the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) and Hubble Space Telescope – are giving amazed astronomers a ringside seat to the biggest global dust storm seen on Mars in several decades. The Martian dust storm, larger by far than any seen on Earth, has raised a cloud of dust that has engulfed the entire planet for several months.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
Too Close for Comfort

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/545/low_STSCI-H-p0321a-k-1340x520.png

This Hubble Space Telescope view of the core of one of the nearest globular star clusters, called NGC 6397, resembles a treasure chest of glittering jewels. The cluster is located 8,200 light-years away in the constellation Ara. Here, the stars are jam-packed together. The stellar density is about a million times greater than in our Sun's stellar neighborhood. The stars in NGC 6397 are also in constant motion, like a swarm of angry bees. The ancient stars are so crowded together that a few of them inevitably collide with each other once in a while. Near misses are even more common.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
A Really Neat Close-up of Comet NEAT from Kitt Peak Observatory

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/611/low_STSCI-H-p0452a-k-1340x520.png

This image of comet C/2001 Q4 (NEAT) was taken at the WIYN 0.9-meter telescope at Kitt Peak National Observatory near Tucson, Ariz., on May 7, 2004.

The image was captured with the Mosaic I camera, which has a one-square degree field of view, or about five times the size of the Moon. Even with this large field, only the comet's coma and the inner portion of its tail are visible. A small star cluster (C0736-105, or Melotte 72) is visible in the lower right of the image, between the head of the comet and the bright red star in the lower-right corner.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
Elusive Planet Reshapes a Ring Around Neighboring Star

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/622/low_STScI-H-p0510a-k-1340x520.png

The top view, taken by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope is the most detailed visible-light image ever taken of a narrow, dusty ring around the nearby star Fomalhaut (HD 216956). The image offers the strongest evidence yet that an unruly and unseen planet may be gravitationally tugging on the ring. The left part of the ring is outside the telescope's view. Hubble unequivocally shows that the center of the ring is a whopping 1.4 billion miles (15 astronomical units) away from the star. This is a distance equal to nearly halfway across our solar system. The geometrically striking ring, tilted obliquely toward Earth, would not have such a great offset if it were simply being influenced by Fomalhaut's gravity alone.

The view at bottom points out important features in the image, such as the ring's inner and outer edges. Astronomers used the Advanced Camera for Surveys' (ACS) coronagraph aboard Hubble to block out the light from the bright star so they could see the faint ring. The dot near the ring's center marks the star's location. Despite the coronagraph, some light from the star is still visible in this image, as can be seen in the wagon wheel-like spokes that form an inner ring around Fomalhaut.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 

Robby

The News Robot
Joined
Jul 28, 2004
Location
Terra
Host Galaxy Cluster to Largest Known Radio Eruption

http://imgsrc.hubblesite.org/hvi/uploads/story/display_image/702/low_STSCI-H-p-0651a-k-1340x520.png

This is a new composite image of galaxy cluster MS0735.6+7421, located about 2.6 billion light-years away in the constellation Camelopardalis. The three views of the region were taken with NASA's Hubble Space Telescope in Feb. 2006, NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory in Nov. 2003, and NRAO's Very Large Array in Oct. 2004. The Hubble image shows dozens of galaxies bound together by gravity. In Jan. 2005, astronomers reported that a supermassive black hole, lurking in the central bright galaxy, generated the most powerful outburst seen in the universe. The VLA radio image shows jets of high energy particles (in red) streaming from the black hole. These jets pushed the X-ray emitting hot gas (shown in blue in the Chandra image) aside to create two giant cavities in the gas. The cavities are evidence for the massive eruption. The X-ray and radio images show the enormous appetite of large black holes and the profound impact they have on their surroundings.

(More at HubbleSite.com)
 
Top