Tech miracle Hubble Space Telescope captures marvellous swirling galaxy 180-mn light years away

The spiral galaxy image captured by the Hubble Space Telescope is the NGC 1961. Know more about it here.

| Updated on: Sep 15 2022, 21:36 IST
NASA: Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter makes astonishing discovery
Spiral Galaxy
1/6 The lunar pits found by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter have mild temperatures, drastically different from the extreme conditions on the surface of the Moon. The temperatures in these caves are nearly 17 degree Celsius almost at all times. (NASA/GSFC/Arizona State University)
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2/6 NASA Moon recently tweeted, "Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter images of pits indicate that the Moon has caves. Could they become astronaut habitats? Scientists have discovered that parts of the pits are always about 63°F (17°C), differing from extreme temperatures at the Moon's surface". (NASA)
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3/6 The surface temperatures on the Moon can go from an extremely high 127 degrees Celsius and as low as -173 degrees Celsius. "The pits, and caves to which they may lead, would make thermally stable sites for lunar exploration compared to areas at the Moon's surface, which heat up to 260 F (about 127 C) during the day and cool to minus 280 F (about minus 173 C) at night,” NASA Moon tweeted further. (NASA)
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4/6 First discovered in 2009, these lunar pits could potentially be used as location for a first Moon Base. Not only are the temperatures moderate, but these pits could also provide protection against cosmic rays, solar radiation and micrometeorites, according to NASA. (AP)
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5/6 LRO Project Scientist Noah Petro of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center said, “Lunar pits are a fascinating feature on the lunar surface. Knowing that they create a stable thermal environment helps us paint a picture of these unique lunar features and the prospect of one day exploring them.” (NASA)
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6/6 The particular pit used to analyze the thermal properties by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter was in an area of the Moon known as the Mare Tranquillitatis. It is 100-meters deep and as wide as a football field. According to scientists, the overhang of the pit is responsible for creating shadows on the Moon and maintaining a temperature of nearly 17 degrees Celsius at all times. (NASA)
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NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has shared an image of a spiral Galaxy, which is located about 180 million light-years away from Earth (NASA)

The James Webb Space Telescope has been in the news ever since it was launched recently and since then it has been integral in pushing the limits of human knowledge ever farther to the beginnings of time. However, the much older Hubble Space Telescope still cannot be considered a slouch as it has been making some spectacular discoveries of its own across the universe. This time, the Hubble Telescope has captured the Galaxy NGC 1961 which seems to be unfurling its gorgeous spiral arms, located about 180 million light-years away from Earth, residing in the constellation Camelopardalis. The breathtaking Hubble image of this swirling galaxy shows glittering blue regions of bright young stars dotting the dusty spiral arms winding around the Galaxy's glowing centre.

NASA has shared that the image of this spiral galaxy has been created from two proposals - one studied previously unobserved Arp galaxies and the other while looking at the progenitors and explosions of a variety of supernovae. The NGC 1961 is an intermediate spiral and an active galactic nucleus (AGN), a type of galaxy. It is a small region at the centre of some galaxies that are far brighter than can be defined by the stellar population alone.

As they lack a clearly defined bar of stars at their centres, intermediate spiral galaxies fall between "barred" and "unbarred" spiral galaxies. At specific wavelengths of light, AGN galaxies have extremely brilliant centres that frequently significantly outshine the rest of the galaxy. Supermassive black holes at the centres of these galaxies are probably responsible for the dazzling jets and winds that influence their evolution.

Did you know?

NASA Hubble Space Telescope, a technological marvel of its time, was launched and deployed by the space shuttle Discovery in 1990. It has made more than 1.5 million observations over the course of its lifetime! More surprisingly, NASA has revealed that Hubble Telescope was designed to last roughly 15 years when it was launched in 1990. The Hubble Space Telescope has undergone five successful astronaut servicing missions, and as a result, the telescope's technology has been modified and improved, "and the telescope remains scientifically productive to this day."

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First Published Date: 15 Sep, 21:36 IST
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