Skywatch

  • May 3, 2007

    Episode 97: HubbleWatch for April 2007

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    Hubblewatch

    Shownotes

    Hubble has stared into the Carina Nebula to view star formation in intense detail. Stellar winds and ultraviolet radiation from the giant stars that have formed in the nebula are shredding the surrounding gas that contributed to their formation. Some of the stars are at least 50 to 100 times the mass of the Sun. Our Sun and solar system may have formed from a similar situation 4.6 billion years ago. At least 50,000 galaxies have turned up in another Hubble image, revealing new information about the universe's younger days. The panoramic Hubble image shows groupings and scatterings of galaxies. Among the distinctive ones are a giant red galaxy with a duo of black holes at its center and a number of new "gravitational lenses," or places where the gravity from a galaxy cluster bends and magnifies objects beyond it. The Hubble image is part of a larger project to study galaxies in a small but representative area of the sky, in order to get an idea of what the universe looks like in all directions.