Hubble Scientists Just Released the Most Detailed Picture of the Universe Ever
Composed of thousands of individual observations taken by the Hubble Space Telescope,this galactic landscape is the most detailed image of the universe ever created.
Credit: Credit: NASA,ESA,G.Illingworth and D.Magee (University of California,Santa Cruz),K.Whitaker (University of Connecticut),R.Bouwens (Leiden University),P.Oesch (University of Geneva) and the Hubble Legacy Field team

Scientists have created a new family photo of the universe.Not unlike the photos in your family album,this银河历史全景徳赢沙巴体育contains old galaxies and infants,well-established worlds and — unavoidably — an occasional train wreck.

新形象,released May 2,is known as the "Hubble Legacy Field." The image represents the most comprehensive view of the universe to date,stitching together more than 7,500哈勃太空望远镜观测taken over 16 years.The final composite image contains some 265,000 galaxies,many of which are so far away that their light has taken billions of years to meet the Hubble's gaze.

"This one image contains the full 徳赢沙巴体育history of the growth of galaxies in the universe,from their time as 'infants' to when they grew into fully-fledged 'adults,'" Garth Illingworth,an astronomer at the University of California,Santa Cruz and lead researcher on the project,said in a statement.

The project to create this image began in 1995,when astronomers decided to focus the Hubble's attention on a seemingly pitch-black scrap of space for 10 consecutive days.From the darkness,worlds emerged.The resulting image — now called the "Hubble Deep Field" — revealed thousands of never-before-seen galaxies,其中一些闪耀 light that dated to the early universe.Studying far-flung galaxies like these gives scientists a hint as to what the cosmos looked like when those lights first flickered,billions of years ago.

The Hubble has since taken tens of thousands of hours of observations — all day,every day,for nearly three decades.(The telescope just celebrated its 29th birthday with this令人惊叹的南部蟹状星云图像.) Hubble researchers hope that this new mosaic of alien galaxies,which combines the last 16 years of those observations,will inspire other astronomers to uncover the secrets held within these worlds,including the origins of galactic "train wrecks" — the mishmash of stars that result when two or more young galaxies collide with one another.(The Milky Way,for what it's worth,is probably one such train wreck.)

As detailed as this image is,its depth of field may be surpassed within a decade.Sometime in the mid-2020s,美国航天局希望发射一颗新的眼睛,叫做广域红外勘测望远镜(WFIRST).If all goes according to plan,each photo snapped by WFIRST will capture 100 times the view of a typical Hubble image.Look forward to a new family photo of the universe,showing tens of millions of distant galaxies side by side.

Originally published onvwin沙巴体育.