New treasures from outer space as Hubble shoots up a storm
Circling above the Earth at 17,500 miles per hour, the Hubble Space Telescope has been photographing the heavens for two decades. Here are some of its latest pictorial treasures.
A supernova remnant that astronomers dubbed the Crab Nebula is the only remaining trace of a huge stellar explosion that observers on the ground in China and Japan chronicled in 1054.
Photo by: ESA, J. Hester and A. Loll (Arizona State University),NASA / Caption by:
A riddle inside a mystery
Planetary nebula known as ESO 456-67 in the constellation of Sagittarius (The Archer), in the southern sky. Basically, this is an image of shells of dust and gas pushed outwards from a dying star. What you see at the center is the remnant of the original star. What's to explain the different shapes? Scientists are still trying to answer that question.
The Large Magellanic Cloud, a satellite galaxy of the Milky Way, is about 200,000 light-years from Earth. The collapsing clouds of gas within it form new stars. New stars are being born in the glowing nebulae.
Hubble data helped NASA create the most detailed weather map yet for a brown dwarf named 2MASSJ22282889-431026. Brown dwarfs are created from condensed gas, but they lack the mass to fuse atoms and produce energy.
A new spin on space junk -- in this case a vast debris disk around the star Fomalhaut. The image also turns up an unidentified mysterious planet circling the star.
Photo by: NASA, ESA, and P. Kalas (University of California, Berkeley and SETI Institute) / Caption by:
Oldest star in our galaxy
The oldest star in our galaxy whose age astronomers can determine is called HD 140283. It's estimated to be 14.5 billion years (give or take 800 million years) and is estimated to be 190.1 light-years away from Earth
Photo by: Digitized Sky Survey (DSS), STScI/AURA, Palomar/Caltech, and UKSTU/AAO / Caption by:
The gravitational field around Abell 68, a cluster of giant galaxies, magnifies light from distant background galaxies.
Photo by: NASA, ESA, and the Hubble Heritage/ESA-Hubble Collaboration / Caption by:
460 light-years away from Earth
About 460 light-years away from Earth resides an object known as HH 151, essentially a bright jet of glowing material trailed by an orange-hued plume of gas and dust. It is located in the constellation of Taurus.
A collection of approximately 150 extremely old stars inhabits our galaxy. They all look a lot like NGC 411, pictured here. But NGC, which was formed from the same gas cloud, is a relative youngster, at an estimated billion years old.