Fifty years ago Captain Kirk and the crew of the starship Enterprise began their journey into space — the final frontier. Now, as the newest Star Trek film hits cinemas, the NASA/ESA Hubble space telescope is also exploring new frontiers, observing distant galaxies in the galaxy cluster Abell S1063 as part of the Frontier Fields programme.(read more)
During May 2016 the Earth and Mars get closer to each other than at any time in the last ten years. The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has exploited this special configuration to catch a new image of our red neighbour, showing some of its famous surface features. This image supplements previous Hubble observations of Mars and allows astronomers to study large-scale changes on its surface. (learn more)
This new NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image, released to celebrate Hubble’s 26th year in orbit, captures in stunning clarity what looks like a gigantic cosmic soap bubble. The object, known as the Bubble Nebula, is in fact a cloud of gas and dust illuminated by the brilliant star within it. The vivid new portrait of this dramatic scene wins the Bubble Nebula a place in the exclusive Hubble hall of fame, following an impressive lineage of Hubble anniversary images. (learn more)
Peering deep into the heart of our home galaxy, the Milky Way, the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope reveals a rich tapestry of more than half a million stars. Apart from a few, blue, foreground stars, almost all of the stars pictured in the image are members of the Milky Way nuclear star cluster, the densest and most massive star cluster in the galaxy. Hidden in the centre of this cluster is the Milky Way’s resident supermassive black hole. (learn more)
Astronomers using the unique ultraviolet capabilities of the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope have identified nine monster stars with masses over 100 times the mass of the Sun in the star cluster R136. This makes it the largest sample of very massive stars identified to date. The results, which will be published in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, raise many new questions about the formation of massive stars. (learn more)
By pushing the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope to its limits astronomers have shattered the cosmic distance record by measuring the distance to the most remote galaxy ever seen in the Universe. This galaxy existed just 400 million years after the Big Bang and provides new insights into the first generation of galaxies. This is the first time that the distance of an object so far away has been measured from its spectrum, which makes the measurement extremely reliable. The results will be published in the Astrophysical Journal.(learn more)
Clear to cloudy hot Jupiters
Image credits: ESA/Hubble & NASA
Astronomers have used the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope and the NASA Spitzer Space Telescope to study the atmospheres of ten hot, Jupiter-sized exoplanets in detail, the largest number of such planets ever studied. The team was able to discover why some of these worlds seem to have less water than expected — a long-standing mystery. The results are published in "Nature".(read more)
Source: ESA/Hubble release heic1523
Observations by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope have taken advantage of gravitational lensing to reveal the largest sample of the faintest and earliest known galaxies in the Universe. Some of these galaxies formed just 600 million years after the Big Bang and are fainter than any other galaxy yet uncovered by Hubble. The team has determined, for the first time with some confidence, that these small galaxies were vital to creating the Universe that we see today. (read more)
Source: ESA/Hubble heic1521
Using images from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope and ESO’s Very Large Telescope, astronomers have discovered never-before-seen structures within a dusty disc surrounding a nearby star. The fast-moving wave-like features in the disc of the star AU Microscopii are unlike anything ever observed, or even predicted, before now. The origin and nature of these features present a new mystery for astronomers to explore. The results are published in the journal Nature on 8 October 2015.(learn more)
Source: ESA/Hubble heic1520
The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope imaged three magnificent sections of the Veil Nebula in 1997. Now, a stunning new set of images from Hubble’s Wide Field Camera 3 capture these scattered stellar remains in spectacular new detail and reveal its expansion over the last years. (read more)
The shimmering colours visible in this NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image show off the remarkable complexity of the Twin Jet Nebula. The new image highlights the nebula’s shells and its knots of expanding gas in striking detail. Two iridescent lobes of material stretch outwards from a central star system. Within these lobes two huge jets of gas are streaming from the star system at speeds in excess of one million kilometres per hour. (read more)
Source: ESA/Hubble heic1517
Some of the most breathtaking views in the Universe are created by nebulae — hot, glowing clouds of gas. This new NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image shows the centre of the Lagoon Nebula, an object with a deceptively tranquil name. The region is filled with intense winds from hot stars, churning funnels of gas, and energetic star formation, all embedded within an intricate haze of gas and pitch-dark dust. (learn more)
The chaotic spin of Pluto’s moon Nix.
Image credits: NASA, ESA, M. Showalter (SETI Inst.), G. Bacon (STScI).
In a new study, scientists have gathered all available NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope data on the four outer moons of Pluto to analyse the system in more depth than ever before. The observations show that at least two of Pluto’s moons are not neatly rotating on their axes but are in chaotic rotation while orbiting around Pluto and its companion Charon. The study also hints that one of the moons has a mysterious jet-black colouring. These surprising results appear in the 4 June issue of the journal Nature.(read more)
In the most extensive survey of its kind ever conducted, a team of scientists have found an unambiguous link between the presence of supermassive black holes that power high-speed, radio-signal-emitting jets and the merger history of their host galaxies. Almost all of the galaxies hosting these jets were found to be merging with another galaxy, or to have done so recently. The results lend significant weight to the case for jets being the result of merging black holes and will be presented in the Astrophysical Journal.(read more)
Astronomers using the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope have, for the first time, collected a census of young white dwarf stars beginning their migration from the crowded centre of an ancient star cluster to its less populated outskirts. The new results challenge our ideas about how and when a star loses its mass near the end of its life. (read more)
The glittering tapestry of young stars flaring to life in this new NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image aptly resembles an exploding shell in a fireworks display. This vibrant image of the star cluster Westerlund 2 has been released to celebrate Hubble’s 25th year in orbit and a quarter of a century of new discoveries, stunning images and outstanding science.(learn more)
Galaxy cluster MACS j1149.5+223 and a supernova four times over.
Image credits:NASA, ESA, S. Rodney (John Hopkins University, USA) and the FrontierSN team; T. Treu (University of California Los Angeles, USA), P. Kelly (University of California Berkeley, USA) and the GLASS team; J. Lotz (STScI) and the Frontier Fields team; M. Postman (STScI) and the CLASH team; and Z. Levay (STScI)
Astronomers using the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope have, for the first time, spotted four images of a distant exploding star. The images are arranged in a cross-shaped pattern by the powerful gravity of a foreground galaxy embedded in a massive cluster of galaxies. The supernova discovery paper will appear on 6 March 2015 in a special issue of Science celebrating the centenary of Albert Einstein’s theory of general relativity.(learn more)
On 23 April 2015, the European Space Agency together with NASA celebrate 25 years since the Hubble Space Telescope has been in orbit! We would like to invite you to join the celebrations by promoting an excellent opportunity to engage your students.
The ESA/Hubble Ode to Hubble competition lets anyone inspired by Hubble express their feelings or share their ideas in a creative and innovative way by creating an original short video. Invite your students to get creative and they could win a piece of Hubble!
As long as it can be uploaded as a YouTube, Vine and Instagram video less than three minutes long participants can submit anything. Pan over a drawing, scroll over a poem or text, film your own Hubblecast, film yourself performing or talking about a Hubble topic, create an animation or compose a piece of music and upload it as a video piece. It just has to be innovative, creative and, most of all, inspired by Hubble, or one of its great discoveries or images.
There are two categories for the competition.
- One for those who are 25 and under — born in Hubble’s lifetime. Entry form for those who are 25 and under
- One for over 25s. Entry form for over 25s
with each having five runners up and one winner. If you don’t create a piece of your own, you can still get involved by crowd-judging the entries to whittle the selection down to a shortlist.
The two winners will receive the once-in-a-lifetime prize of a section of Hubble’s solar array mounted in perspex. These little pieces of Hubble are part of the huge solar arrays that spent 3 years orbiting the Earth, giving Hubble its power, until they were replaced in 1993. The winners will also receive a metal-backed copy of the 25th anniversary image signed by astronomers and astronauts who have worked on Hubble. The two winning videos will be featured in our special “Ode to Hubble” Hubblecast. The producers of the five shortlisted videos for each category will receive the wonderful book The Universe through the Eyes of Hubble and their videos will be hosted on the spacetelescope.org website.
- Submit your video by 12 March 2015! (11:59pm CEST)
- Starting 13 March 2015 crowd-vote the entries until 1 April 2015!
Image credits: NASA, ESA, J. Dalcanton (University of Washington, USA),
B. F. Williams (University of Washington, USA), L. C. Johnson
(University of Washington, USA), the PHAT team, and R. Gendler.
The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has captured the sharpest and biggest image ever taken of the Andromeda galaxy — otherwise known as Messier 31. The enormous image is the biggest Hubble image ever released and shows over 100 million stars and thousands of star clusters embedded in a section of the galaxy’s pancake-shaped disc stretching across over 40 000 light-years.(learn more)
The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has captured many breathtaking images of the Universe, but one snapshot stands out from the rest: the Eagle Nebula’s Pillars of Creation. In 1995 Hubble’s iconic image revealed never-before-seen details in the giant columns and now the telescope is kickstarting its 25th year in orbit with an even clearer, and more stunning, image of these beautiful structures.