April 19, 2010 - Two Decades of Discovery
Two Decades of Discovery Envisioned as long ago as 1923 by rocket scientist Herman Oberth, the large orbiting observatory we know as the Hubble Space Telescope was the culmination of more than two decades of planning and hard work. The 96-inch telescope was launched twenty years ago this week and it has remained in nearly constant operation thanks to five servicing missions by astronauts over the years. Among its many discoveries, Hubble has helped pinpoint the age of the universe, found evidence for enigmatic dark matter, detected organic molecules in planets outside our solar system, and has shed new light on the evolution of stars. Hubble’s 1995 image of the Eagle Nebula, arguably one of its most famous, shows newborn stars emerging from the evaporating gaseous globules in which they formed.
Image Credit: NASA / ESA / STScI / J. Hester and P. Scowen (Arizona State University)
April 19-25, 2010
Holidays - Sky Events - Space History
Moon at perigee
Saturn 8° north of Moon