Today the Hubble Space Telescope completed a major milestone – 20 years of amazing service to science. On April 24, 1990, NASA launched the space observatory aboard the space shuttle Discovery and since then the telescope has been extraordinarily prolific.
Hubble is undoubtly NASA’s one of the best recognized, longest lived and most successful scientific project in history. Hubble discoveries revolutionized nearly all areas of current astronomical research from planetary science to cosmology.
NASA and the Space Telescope Science Institute, in Baltimore are celebrating Hubble’s journey of exploration with a stunning new picture and several online educational activities. There are also opportunities for people to explore galaxies and send personal greetings to Hubble for posterity.
NASA, ESA, and STScI are releasing a new Hubble photo of a small portion of one of the largest known star-birth regions in the galaxy, the Carina Nebula. Three light-year-tall towers of cool hydrogen laced with dust rise from the wall of the nebula.
NASA also published an interactive movie where fans can browse through photos, videos, look at a 3D model of the telescope and take a journey through 20 years of Hubble’s timeline.
[via NASA Press release]