April 24, 2010

Happy 20th Hubble!

Today is the Hubble Space Telescope's 20th anniversary in orbit. The Hubble Space Telescope has over its lifetime provided many discoveries and produced thousands of awe-inspiring images of deep space, and our local neighborhood in space. To celebrate, NASA has released a new image. The image is a small portion of the Carina Nebula, a large star-birth region in the Milky Way Galaxy, and depicts a pillar of gas and dust (3 light years tall!) rising among jets of gas.
Image: NASA
I'm also celebrating by including some of my favorite images from the Hubble below the fold.

I really like the structure and shapes of M104 and M64, and love the detail that the Hubble brings out. I can almost picture galaxies turning...

The Majestic Sombrero Galaxy (M104)
Image: NASA
Nucleus of Black Eye Galaxy (M64)
Image: NASA
I also like the shapes of the following galaxies, especially the Whirlpool Galaxy's.
The Whirlpool Galaxy (M51) and Companion Galaxy
Image: NASA
Grand Design Spiral Galaxy (M81)
Image: NASA
The Gas Pillars in the Eagle Nebula almost parallel the image just released of the pillars in Carina Nebula.
Gas Pillars in the Eagle Nebule (M16)
Image: NASA
The detail in Hubble's image of the Orion Nebula is just stunning. The view in my binoculars is nothing compared to this...
Orion Nebula (M42)
Image: NASA
I really like this picture of a supernova near NGC 4526. Compare its brightness with the rest of the galaxy's (the supernova is the bright dot in the bottom left corner).
Supernova 1994D in NGC 4526
Image: NASA
And this image may seem familiar... (it's a picture of an aurora on the planet Saturn!)
Saturn Aurora
Image: NASA
All of these images can be found on HubbleSite.

Edit: Google also has a Google Doodle honoring this anniversary:
Image: Google

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