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Episode 13: 20 Years in 20 Images

1 Jun 2010, 04:00 UTC
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Hubble press release:

Starry-Eyed Hubble Celebrates 20 Years of Awe and Discovery


For those who care to count, you will notice that there are more than twenty images used in this show. Toward the total of 20, I am not including any pictures of the launch or servicing missions. I also do not include the technology demonstration images of the double star (1990) or of galaxy Messier 100 (1994). My twenty only includes the press release images of astronomical objects, a few of which are mulitple images in themselves (e.g., Jupiter's red spots (2008)). Considering the wealth of Hubble imagery from which to choose, you really can't blame me for pushing the limits.

I originally chose this set of images for the "Google Doodle" - the logo change on the Google search page for Hubble's 20th anniversary. In association with the logo change, one can explore a similar set of images in the Google Earth program. The set used by Google is slightly different, as planets were removed and other images substituted to work better with their software.

Note that I found an error in the date for the image of the cluster of galaxies named Abell 2218. The image I used was first released in January 2000 as part of the re-start of Hubble observations after Servicing Mission 3A. When I went looking for Abell 2218 in the archive, I found it as part of the October 2001 press release which announced the discovery of a distant galaxy that was made possible by the gravitational lensing of the cluster. I should have used the 2000 date for this image. Just to be complete, note that we released a black and white view of Abell 2218 in April 1995.

Do you have a favorite Hubble image that ws left out here? Would you like to provide your own 20th anniversary memories for Hubble? If so, the public is invited to send Messages to Hubble that will be stored in our permanent archive. You can send messages via email, Facebook, or Twitter. Help us capture the societal impact of Hubble's first twenty years by adding your views to our data collection.

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