Hubble Telescope’s 28th anniversary

Any achievement in life is to be celebrated. Achieving a single year for any project is an enough reason to celebrate. In the same way, Hubble Space Telescope has a great reason to celebrate as it turns 28 years old this year. A batch of gorgeous, great and new imagery will help in marking the occasion. Hubble Space Telescope was officially launched on 24th April 1990 on board of the space shuttle Discovery.

As a way of marking this special day, European Space Agency ESA and NASA jointly runs great photos that were taken during the release of the Hubble mission every April as a way of celebrating these milestones. The star of the 28th anniversary this year will show the Lagoon Nebula which is a massive heart of star birth. The star is 20 light-years tall and 55-light years wide. This has been awaited by many who follow up on this celebration.

Even though this is approximately 4,000 light-years away from planet Earth, it is much larger (3 times) in the sky when compared to the full moon. This is according to a report released by NASA and ESA officials as they were describing newly released Hubble images that show the Nebula in infrared and visible light.

This will also be visible with naked eyes when being observed in clear and dark skies. The official also said that this star is relatively big at night. Hubble will only therefore be able to capture a fraction of this star. However, the visible light image which was taken by Hubble’s Wide Field Camera 3 device in February this year shows a central area of the nebula. This camera is not able to capture the whole image as it is.

Since it was released into space almost three decades ago, it has become an institution that thrills the public with amazing views of the making observations and the cosmos. This has transformed the understanding of the astronomers in matters of the universe and its history.

However, things have not been so smooth sailing for Hubble. The telescope was famously launched with a fault in its main mirror which led to slightly blurry images. This problem was however fixed in 1993 by spacewalking astronauts. Hubble was further maintained, repaired and upgraded during other four additional servicing missions. The last servicing mission occurred in 2009. Hubble Space Telescope is still in good health and going strong.