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Space & Astronomy

Hubble Space Telescope has turned 28

By T.K. Randall
April 24, 2018 · Comment icon 3 comments

Hubble might be getting on a bit, but it is still going strong. Image Credit: NASA / JSC
The world-famous telescope has been capturing images of the cosmos for the better part of three decades.
Well known for its breathtaking snaps of distant nebulae and other spectacular stellar phenomena, Hubble has also contributed to a number of important scientific breakthroughs and has been instrumental in determining the age, size and expansion rate of the universe.

More recently, it also helped confirm the optical origin of the first gravitational waves ever detected.

"The LIGO and Virgo detectors, of course, first observed the gravitational waves, but Hubble located the optical counterpoint, and that's really, really cool," said NASA scientist Jeff Hayes.

"Thanks to Hubble, we now have the ability to see stars as they're coalescing and forming, as well as study the deaths of the stars and the interesting planetary nebulae that result."
Not bad for a platform that is still using technology designed all the way back in the 1970s.

In the future, Hubble will also work alongside the upcoming James Webb Space Telescope by helping to identify interesting objects out in space for its more sophisticated successor to observe.

"The relationship between James Webb and Hubble will be synergistic," said Hayes.

Source: | Comments (3)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf 6 years ago
Without doubt Hubble will be seen as one of the greatest scientific instruments ever made.
Comment icon #2 Posted by Vilasarius 6 years ago
I didn't realize it was that old. Nevertheless, the discoveries it has uncovered are astounding.
Comment icon #3 Posted by Merc14 6 years ago
Agreed.  I remember vividly when that first image came back and was "fuzzy".  Huge disappointment and much anger directed at NASA.   NASA sucked it up, though, designed a fix and the shuttle astronauts performed an incredible feat by spending days in space installing and upgrading the telescope, and the resultant images were as breathtakingly beautiful as that first one was ugly.   Not sure how much longer it will last but it is healthy at the moment and shows no signs of ending operations anytime soon.  

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