Hubble Space Telescope

The Hubble Space Telescope, named for noted American astronomer Edwin Hubble, was built by NASA and launched into orbit aboard Space Shuttle Discovery (STS-31) in April 1990. It can observe the visual, ultraviolet, and infrared light spectrums, and is one of four space telescopes in NASA's "Great Observatories" Program.

2,235 Questions
Astronomy
Telescopes
Hubble Space Telescope

Why does the Hubble Telescope work better in space than on the Earth's surface?

We have an atmosphere that gets in the way. Pockets of air at different temperatures and different volumes act as lenses, just like those in the telescope itself, that bend the light and can do so rapidly. In fact, this bending of light is the cause of most UFO sightings. Given the properties of light, this bending can cause a change in shape and color of the object being observed and so can cause a lot of problems with useful data. Placing the telescope above the atmosphere (or in its uppermost reaches) allows the observer to bypass these issues.

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Astronomy
Space Travel and Exploration
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Hubble Space Telescope

What does the hubble telescope look like?

Go to the related link to see a huge collection of photos of the HST from various angles, as well as photos of astronauts working on it.

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Hubble Space Telescope
Astrophysics

When was seti created?

SETI began in 1984

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Google Earth
Sputnik
Hubble Space Telescope

Where is past years satellite images available online?

For past years earth-based satellite imagery in Google Earth you can select 'Historical Imagery' under View menu. This shows a timeline slider from which to select available satellite and aerial imagery from the past.

NASA also provides vast archives of satellite imagery much of which are available online such as the NASA Image Gallery

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Astronomy
Telescopes
Hubble Space Telescope

Can space telescope see people here on earth?

no unless it is very very very very very magnified.

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Astronomy
Space Travel and Exploration
Hubble Space Telescope

How far have scientists seen into space?

Using the Hubble Space Telescope we have seen 13 billion light years into space, these are some of the very first galaxies to form after the big bang. [Search for "hubble space telescope ultra deep field images" to see the actual images.]

Although technology is always improving, we can never see much further than this point in time.

The problem is the time it takes for light to travel to Earth. The light we see from these very first galaxies have been travelling for 13 billion years to reach us, so really we are looking back in time. In them 13 billion years the light has been travelling to us, the universe has already expanded another 13 billion years. The reality is that many of the stars that make up these galaxies no longer exist in the same way we are seeing them today.

Theoretically, if the edge of the universe emitted visible light and stopped expanding today, we would still have to wait 13.7 billion years (the current age of the universe) before we would be able to notice. Therefore how far we can see is always governed by the time it takes for light to reach us.

If you think about it - the light we see from these very first galaxies was emitted before life and the Earth even existed! Bare in mind that light travels so fast it could go around the Earth 7 times in 1 second...

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Astronomy
Telescopes
Hubble Space Telescope

Difference between land based and space based telescopes?

The bird is the word ^-^

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Inventions
Space Travel and Exploration
Hubble Space Telescope

Who invented the Hubble Space Telescope?

ORIGINS

No one person ever "invents" or builds a spacecraft; it is a collaboration of individuals, companies, governments, etc., over a period of many years.

Like all NASA projects, HST began many years ago as a scientific proposal that eventually found its way into creation as a scientific instrument, spacecraft, probe, satellite, etc. Though it typically takes 3-5 years for a project to be completed once the Design Reviews are performed, the engineering designs and other key elements that bring a project to life begins years before actual manufacturing work is begun.

The Hubble Telescope can trace its origins to 1946, when noted astronomer Lyman Spitzer ("Father of the Space Telescope") wrote his paper entitled "Astronomical Advantages of an Extraterrestrial Observatory". Spitzer (NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope is named for him) pushed many years of his career for the development of a space based observatory, and in 1965 he was appointed head of a committee with the task of defining the parameters and objectives for an orbiting observatory.

FIRST SPACE OBSERVATORIES

Space-based observatories are hardly novel - the first observatory was launched in 1962 by NASA was the Orbiting Solar Observatory, which gathered X-ray, UV, and Gamma Ray data), and the British launched their own orbiting solar observatory around the same time. In 1966, NASA launched the first Orbiting Astronomical Observatory (OAO), whose battery failed after only 3 days. Its successor, OAO-2, launched in 1968, was much different however; it continued to operate and send UV data on stars and galaxies until 1972, well past its project life of 1 year.

ADVANTAGES OF SPACE-BASED OBSERVATORIES

Aside from the obvious advantage of not being hindered by filtering problems due to Earth's atmosphere, space observatories can view any part of the universe it's pointed at; ground based observatories are limited to the area of sky they can view because they're on a fixed point on the Earth's surface, and can only view a limited amount of the sky in its area of vision as it rotates. While modern ground telescopes have claimed to now have better resolution capability than Hubble, what they fail to mention is that the algorithms and technology used to gain those advances were largely due to technology developed for Hubble and other space observatories.

HUBBLE BIRTH

The ultimate success of the OSO/OAO programs and the data they produced convinced many in the scientific community that there were huge benefits to be gained from a space-based observatory, and in 1968 NASA began firm plans to design and build an observatory provisionally known as either the Large Orbiting Telescope (LOS) or Large Space Telescope (LST), with a provisional launch date in 1979. NASA always gives a project an initial name; as the project comes to life, it will often rename it for a specific person who made key contributions to the area of study the instrument or satellite is focusing on.

For the next 10 years the project languished in the government funding quagmire; though there were major lobbying efforts and strong support for LST by the scientific community, Congress wasn't as eager to give up the money required for such a bold venture, and budget cuts and changes eventually led to NASA collaborating with the European Space Agency (ESA) on the project. The ESA agreed to help fund the project, provide solar arrays and one of the first instruments, in exchange for a guarantee of at least 15% observation time for its scientists. The ESA also provided personnel to assist in the construction of the LST.

Construction finally began in the late '70's, with 2 key NASA Centers having overall responsibility; Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland (ground and scientific instrument control), and Marshall Space Flight Center in Alabama (design, development & construction). Perkin-Elmer was given the contract by MSFC to build the large mirror (Optical Telescope Array) and the LST's Fine Guidance Sensors (responsible for precise positioning of the telescope during observations), and aerospace giant Lockheed was given the task of building the spacecraft required to house all of the instruments and support systems. I still remember seeing it being constructed in 1984 at MSFC - little did I know then that in 7 years I'd be working on it for GSFC.

LARGE SPACE TELESCOPE RENAMED

In 1983, NASA formally renamed the Large Space Telescope the Hubble Space Telescope, in honor of American Astronomer Edwin P. Hubble (November 20, 1889 - September 28, 1953), who made the key discovery that the universe is in fact expanding, and demonstrated that other galaxies exist besides the Milky Way. It is a long-standing NASA tradition to name spacecraft for those who have made key contributions in the field a particular experiment or observatory is going to be used for.

SERVICING MISSIONS

Early on, it was determined that HST should be designed to be maintained in orbit, and the plans for the Shuttle program fell into those plans. This single key design factor has kept the project alive for nearly 20 years. To date, there have been 5 servicing missions to maintain HST; SM1, SM2, SM3A, SM3B, and SM4. SM3 was split into 2 separate missions after the NICMOS experiment, installed on the 1997 SM2 mission, began to lose its solid nitrogen cooling source much faster than was designed due to an undetected thermal short. A fix was quickly devised, the NICMOS Cryocooler System, a hi-speed cryogenic turbine (the blades are the diameter of a dime) that pumps liquid helium through the original pipes used to originally freeze the nitrogen. The installation of the NCS system and additional cooling systems to compensate for the added heat generated from its electronics, and the failure of 4 of HST's 6 onboard gyros (prompting replacement to be scheduled for SM3A) is why the mission was split into 2 parts.

LEGACY / BENEFITS

HST, though delayed by the shutdown of the Space Program after the Challenger accident, and the initial problem with its primary mirror, has ultimately proven to be the premier observatory the world recognizes. Some of the most stunning pictures and discoveries in the universe have come as a direct result of HST's observations.

In addition to solving some of Astronomy's long-standing problems and fueling the imagination of millions, everyday people have benefited from HST technology as well. Digital cameras and imaging technology, SSD/Flash Drives, Lithium Ion batteries, etc., all owe their origins to technology directly or indirectly used for HST, among many other devices used by ordinary people. As one of 4 observatories in NASA's "Great Observatories" program (the other 3 are the Compton Gamma Ray Observatory (CGRO), the Chandra X-Ray Telescope, and the Spitzer Space Telescope), it has proven that its benefits have been worth the cost.

Other space telescopes are planned - the James Webb Space Telescope (many former HST personnel are now working on it), an Infrared telescope, will be much different, in that it won't view the optical spectrum and will orbit at Lagrangian Point 2 (L2), past the orbit of the Moon. Several other space observatories are already in orbit at the L2 point.

The Advanced Technology Large-Aperture Space Telescope (ATLAST) will be the true successor to HST, if the proposed project ever comes to fruition. Also planned to be orbited at the Sun-Earth L2 point, its proposed mirror will be several times larger than HST's, and will be able to view in several wavelengths, including the optical, which JWST isn't designed to do.

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Telescopes
NASA
Hubble Space Telescope

What is NASA'S most famous space telescope?

The Hubble Space Telescope is the most famous and the best working EVER MADE!

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Electronics Engineering
NASA
Hubble Space Telescope

Sunita Williams experience in NASA?

she became nasam in NASA

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Telescopes
NASA
Hubble Space Telescope

What is nasa's most famous telescope?

the Hubble space telescope

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Science
Astronomy
Hubble Space Telescope

Who did Edwin Hubble work with?

Hubble worked with the astronomer G. E. Hale at the Mount Wilson observatory. He used methods and results by Henrietta S. Leavitt and V. M. Silpher. His long-time collaborator was M. L. Humason.

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Astronomy
Planetary Science
Planet Saturn
Hubble Space Telescope

What planet is so light it could float in water?

== == Saturn. With an average density of 0.7 grams/cubic centimeter,density less than that of water it could really float on water.

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Cars & Vehicles
Hubble Space Telescope

What is the purpose of the Hubble telescope?

Launched on April 24th 1990 the purpose of the Hubble space telescope is so astronauts and astronomers and even the public can discover new images of our Galaxy and other Galaxy's and other planets

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Astronomy
Telescopes
Hubble Space Telescope

What is a barlow lens on a telescope?

A barlow lens increases the magnification of the eyepiece usually by a factor of two.

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Space Travel and Exploration
Artificial Satellites
Telescopes
Hubble Space Telescope

Is the Hubble Space Telescope a reflecting or refracting telescope?

The Hubble Space Telescope, or HST, or just the "Hubble" for most folks, is a Ritchey-Chrétien reflector telescope. It has a primary mirror to reflect and focus the incident light. A link is provided below.

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Space Travel and Exploration
Artificial Satellites
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Hubble Space Telescope

Where did they get the funding to build the hubble space telescope?

Tax money, just like all other NASA projects

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Hubble Space Telescope

What are facts about the hubble telescope?

Hubble Space Telescope's Name:
NASA named the world's first space-based optical telescope after American astronomer Edwin P. Hubble (1889-1953). Dr. Hubble confirmed an "expanding" universe, which provided the foundation for the Big Bang theory.
Cool Fact:
Scientists believe our universe began with a "big bang" some 13.7 billion years ago. If all the events in the history of the universe until now were squeezed into 24 hours, Earth wouldn't form until late afternoon and humans would have existed for only 2 seconds.

Hubble Space Telescope's Mission:

  • Launch: April 24, 1990 from space shuttle Discovery (STS-31)
  • Deployment: April 25, 1990
  • Mission Duration: Up to 20 years
  • Servicing Mission 1: December 1993
  • Servicing Mission 2: February 1997
  • Servicing Mission 3A: December 1999
  • Servicing Mission 3B: February 2002


Hubble Space Telescope's Size:
  • Length: 43.5 ft (13.2 m)
  • Weight: 24,500 lb (11,110 kg)
  • Maximum Diameter: 14 ft (4.2 m)
Hubble is nearly the size of a large school bus-but it can fit inside a space shuttle cargo bay.



Cost at Launch:
$1.5 billion
Spaceflight Statistics:
The Hubble Space Telescope whirls around Earth at a speed of 5 miles per second. If cars moved that fast, a coast-to-coast trip across the continental United States would take only 10 minutes. Orbit: At an altitude of 307 nautical miles (569 km, or 353 miles), inclined 28.5 degrees to the equator (low-Earth orbit)
Who built the Hubble?
Lyman Spitzer Jr. was the one who came up with the idea of "a space telescope". NASA liked the idea and soon funding was coming in from the government and universities. In 1990 the Hubble was completed and launched into orbit.

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Hubble Space Telescope

What does the Hubble Telescope do?

The Hubble Space Telescope, launched in 1990, uses a large hyperbolic mirror to take highly detailed astronomical photographs. Hubble's orbit outside Earth's atmosphere allows it to take extremely sharp images without distortion or light pollution.

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Space Shuttle
NASA
Hubble Space Telescope

Why are Space Shuttles launched from Florida?

Relatively clear weather. If there's a problem in reentry they can ditch in the ocean.

== == == == There are several good reasons for having the launch site where it is.

- It's fairly close to the equator, at least relative to the rest of the United States. Being close to the equator gives the launch vehicle a bit of a boost because of the rotation of the earth. - It's on the east coast, so an eastward launch does its dangerous stuff over the ocean, where it's less likely to cause a big lawsuit.

- The infrastructure, which was built for Apollo, was already there.

It doesn't snow, tis true, but the salt air, hurricanes, and frequent afternoon thunderstorms aren't a particularly great environment to work in. There are places with better weather, but those other advantages are hard to beat.

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Space Travel and Exploration
Space Shuttle
NASA
Hubble Space Telescope

What state are space shuttles launched from?

They laaunch from Florida, from the Kennedy Space Center.

The Space Shuttle missions, as well as all US manned space flights, were launched from Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida (east of Orlando).

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Astronomy
Hubble Space Telescope

How did Edwin Hubble discover the Hubble telescope?

Edwin Hubble didn't invent the Hubble Space Telescope, and he never knew of it.

It was named in his honor and memory long after his death.

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Hubble Space Telescope

Did they forget to put the lens on the Hubble telescope?

they did not forget to put a lens in but there was a flaw in the original lens that it was launched with that had to be replaced

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Space Travel and Exploration
Telescopes
Hubble Space Telescope

What is the Hubble?

Hubble refers to the Hubble Space Telescope (HST). It was launched on April 24 1990 from the space shuttle and has returned spectacular pictures to Earth of the solar system and beyond.

See the Related Link below for more details. If you click on the 'Operations' tab when you are in the link, you can also see where Hubble is now, and when it will next pass over your location.

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Telescopes
NASA
Hubble Space Telescope

What is the name nasa's most famous telescope?

hubble space telescope.

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