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Hubble Captures Stunning Bubble Nebula for its 26th Birthday [VIDEO]

Apr 22, 2016 04:05 AM EDT

The Hubble Space Telescope is commemorating its 26th year in space. In line with this festive celebration, Hubble has stitched together four separate images to form a mosaic showing us the incredible beauty of a bubble nebula.

The bubble nebula was first discovered by William Herschel in 1787. This is not the first time that the bubble nebula appeared in front of the lenses of the Hubble telescope, but due to its large size, past Hubble images only showed small segments of the star cluster.

The stunning image of the bubble nebula may appear to be an explosion of some kind at first sight, but in reality, it is the result of a powerful stellar wind from a star known as SAO 20575 that has a mass between 10 and 20 times our sun.

According to the press release of Hubble Information Centre, the bubble nebula measures around ten light-years in diameter and continues to expand at a rate of more than 100,000 kilometers per hour. The 26th year commemorative imagery of the bubble nebula was made possible by stitching together four different images taken by Hubble's Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3).

The Hubble Space Telescope is a joint project of ESA and NASA, and was launched into space in April 24, 1990 aboard the space shuttle Discovery. Since then, Hubble Telescope has been sending astounding imagery of specially chosen astronomical objects.


Hubble Space Telescope has caught a glimpse of the same nebula in 1998 (above) using Wide Planetary Camera 1 and two years later, the same nebula was captured using the Wide Planetary Camera 2 providing unprecedented clarity (below).


During its 26 years of stay in space, Hubble has been taking a lot of images beyond our solar system, which helped researchers analyze and study the inner workings of our universe.

Below are some of the images taken by Hubble Telescope.



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