12 Jan 2020

Hubble Space Telescope (HST) | Hubble Telescope | Hubble Telescope Facts | Hubble Telescope Images Live

The Hubble Space Telescope also known as HST or Hubble is a Space Telescope. It was launched into low Earth orbit in April 1990. Hubble's launch and deployment marked the most significant advance in Astronomy since Galileo's telescope.
The Hubble Telescope was built by NASA with contributions from the European space agency. Now you may think- why we have placed it in the space, not on earth's surface? The answer is, the space is above the distortion of the atmosphere, far above rain clouds and Light pollution. So it can provide clear images of the universe without any environmental obstructions.

Hubble Space Telescope (HST) Video


The Hubble Telescope is named after an american astronomer Edwin Hubble. The Hubble telescope has been used to observe the most distant stars and galaxies along with the planets in our solar system.
Now let's have an idea about how big the Hubble Telescope is -
It's weight is nearly 10,886 Kgs, with a length of 13.2 metres and maximum diameter of 4.2 metres.
Now I will tell you some interesting facts about the Hubble Telescope -
The Hubble Telescope takes pictures of distant stars, galaxies and planets while revolving around Earth at about 17,000 miles per hour.The pointing accuracy of Hubble Telescope is unbelievably high. The Hubble Telescope has to be extremely steady and accurate in order to take images of distant and faint objects. The telescope is able to lock onto a target without deviating more than 0.007th of an arc-second, or about the width of a human hair seen at a distance of 1 mile. Hubble has made more than 1.3 million observations since its mission began in 1990.

hubble space telescope, hubble telescope, space telescope
Hubble Space Telescope
The Hubble Telescope has been one of the most productive scientific instrument ever built, as the astronomers have published more than 15,000 scientific papers using data obtained from the Hubble Telescope and those papers have been cited in other papers 738,000 times. Hubble has gone more than 4 billion miles circling Earth at an altitude of about 340 miles.The Hubble Telescope transmits nearly 150 gigabits of raw science data every week.
With the Help of Hubble Telescope, we have been able to see back into very distant past, to locations that are more than 13.4 billion light years away from Earth. Hubble Features a 2.4 metre mirror and it's four main instruments observe in the ultraviolet, visible and near infrared regions of the electromagnetic spectrum. Many observations made by hubble Telescope have led to breakthroughs in astrophysics, such as determining the rate of expansion of the universe. Hubble is the only telescope that has been designed to be maintained in the space by astronauts. Five space shuttle missions have repaired, upgraded and replaced systems on the telescope. Do You know that Hubble has no thrusters. It uses Newton's third law by spinning its wheels in the opposite direction to change angles.
When launched, the Hubble space Telescope carried 5 scientific instruments these were- the wide field and planetary camera, high speed photometre, Goddard high resolution spectrograph, faint object spectrograph and faint object camera.
The Space Telescope science institute is responsible for the scientific operation of the telescope and the delivery of data products to astronomers.
Within weeks of the launch of the hubble telescope, it got a serious problem with its optical system. This was indicated when the scientists observed the images sent by the telescope. They found that the best image quality was drastically lower than expected.
After analysis, it was concluded that the cause of the problem was - that the primary mirror had been polished to the wrong shape.
After the problems with Hubble's mirror were discovered, the first servicing mission assumed greater importance, as the astronauts would need to do extensive work to install corrective optics. For this mission a team of seven astronauts was made and they were trained to use about a hundred specialised tools.
The mission was one of the most complex performed up until that date. It involved 5 long extravehicular activity periods.
On January 13, 1994, NASA declared the mission a complete success and showed the first sharper images. It was a gift of NASA to the whole world of astronomy.
The discussion about the hubble Telescope is incomplete without discussing its contribution to the astronomy and important discoveries made by it.
Hubble has helped resolve some long standing problems in Astronomy while also raising new questions. Some results have required new theories to explain them. 

Important Discoveries by Hubble Space Telescope (HST)

Age of the Universe

Hubble Telescope helped in measuring the rate at which the universe is expanding, which is related to its age. According to the hubble, the estimated age of the Universe is now about 13.7 billion years.

Finding Black Holes

The Hubble Telescope helped in finding the relationships between galaxies and their Central black holes. The work Conducted with the Hubble space Telescope shows that black holes are found at the centre of almost all galaxies. The Hubble programs established that there is a close relationship between the masses of the nuclear black holes and properties of the galaxies.

In determining the mass and size of the Milky Way

In March 2019, observations from Hubble telescope and data from the European space agency's Gaia space observatory were combined to determine the mass and size of the Milky Way. It has been found that the total mass of the Milky Way galaxy is nearly 1.5 trillion solar units and it has a radius of approx 129,000 light years.

Discoveries within our solar system

The Hubble Space Telescope has also played very important role in finding many new things in our solar system. It has been used to study objects in the outer reaches of the solar system like dwarf planets Pluto and Eris. It also discovered a tiny fifth moon orbiting around Pluto. The Hubble found a large ocean of salty water on Ganymede, one of Jupiter's moons. The Hubble showed that Ganymede has a subsurface ocean, which is nearly 100 kilometres deep.

Other notable discoveries by the Hubble Space Telescope include-

Extending visible wavelength images, supernova reappearance, proto-planetary disks in the Orion Nebula, optical counterparts of the still mysterious Gamma ray bursts, evidence for the presence of extra-solar planets around Sun Like stars and so on...
So friends these are some interesting facts about the Hubble space Telescope (HST). I hope you enjoyed and found it interesting and useful.


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