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Hubble Space Telescope

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Hubble Space Telescope (HST) is one of the most flexible space telescopes which has been playing an important role in the researches of space since its entering into the orbit of Earth. It is called “The Eye of NASA”. This space telescope took its name from one of the greatest astronomers Edwin Hubble. The launching and deployment were held in April 1990 and this telescope is still on duty. After the Galileo’s telescope, it has been the most significant telescope which opens up a way to observe galaxies at the most distance.

The launching date of the Hubble Telescope was 24th April 1990 and it was deployed on 25th April 1990. It is 13.2m in length and weight is around 10886kg (24000 lb). It has a maximum diameter of 4.2 meters.

Hubble’s mirrors are the most important part of the telescope. There are two mirrors in it. One is a primary mirror and the other one is a secondary. The diameters of the primary mirror and secondary mirrors are 2.4m and 0.3m respectively. The primary mirror is of heavyweight and it weighs around 828 kg. On the other hand, the weight of the secondary mirror is 12.3kg. The velocity of HST is about 7.59 m/s. 

The power source for Hubble Space Telescope is the Sun. It has two 25 feet solar panels on it which are capable of producing 5500 watts in sunlight. It utilizes 2100 watts on average. It has six Nickel-Hydrogen batteries. Their storage capacity is identical with 22 average car batteries combined. 

Distances of Cepheid Variable stars are measured more accurately with Hubble Space Telescope. The expansion of the universe is also being measured meticulously. The age of the universe is estimated from the expansion rate it. The age of the universe is approximately about 13.7 billion which was predicted to be 10 to 100 billion years before the launching of Hubble’s Telescope.

The type of expansion of the universe has been disclosed with the help of the Hubble Space Telescope. It is expanding with acceleration while this expansion should have been decelerating under the influence of gravity. But the cause is still unexplained. 

HST (Hubble Space Telescope) has sent high-resolution images which provide strong evidence behind the hypothesis of black holes being in the center of the nearby galaxies.

Hubble Telescope is capable of capturing galaxies of light-years away. It has provided data that can reveal the most distant objects. It also provides data on the furthest known galaxy GN-Z11.

During the collision of Jupiter and Comet Shoemaker-levy 9 in 1994, HST provided some high-resolution pictures which helped to study the collision dynamics.

HST has revealed something extravagant in March 2015. Ganymede is one of Jupiter’s moons. A subsurface saltwater ocean has been found on Ganymede. This ocean is about 100km deep and it is underneath the ice crust which is 150 km deep.

A supernova reappearance has been observed by Hubble’s telescope. The supernova was captured in November 2014 and disappeared due to its light being wrapped with its gravity. Then it reappeared on 11th December 2015.

Hubble Space Telescope plays a crucial role in space science and also aerospace engineering. Every day, it is revealing new keynotes which makes it more interesting. HTS can amaze with its own unknown facts. From the beginning of the mission of HST, it has made about 1.4 million observations. It revolves around the earth at 2700 km/hr. It has made a distance of 4 billion miles around earth. It uses Newton’s 3rd law for changing angle. It takes 15 minutes for a change of 90º angle. The pointing accuracy of HST is 0.007 arcsecond. It can observe objects at distance at a location of 13.4 billion light-years from Earth. 



Written By:

Snigdha Shiuly Tikader

Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET)

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