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News Release 44 of 297

February 2, 2012 01:00 PM (EST)

News Release Number: STScI-2012-08

Hubble Zooms in on a Magnified Galaxy

February 2, 2012: A team of astronomers aimed Hubble at one of the most striking examples of gravitational lensing, a nearly 90-degree arc of light in the galaxy cluster RCS2 032727-132623. Hubble's view of the distant background galaxy, which lies nearly 10 billion light-years away, is significantly more detailed than could ever be achieved without the help of the gravitational lens.

This observation provides a unique opportunity to study the physical properties of a galaxy vigorously forming stars when the universe was only one-third its present age. The results have been accepted for publication in The Astrophysical Journal.

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Credit: NASA, ESA, J. Rigby (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center), K. Sharon (Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics, University of Chicago), and M. Gladders and E. Wuyts (University of Chicago)