After more than a month of forced downtime due to computer system failures, the most famous space observatory, the Hubble Space Telescope, is back in operation and back in full operation. The first images taken after the failure were published, and they show quite unusual galaxies, reports “Live Sience”.
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The Hubble Space Telescope continued observations on July 17, more than a month after June 13, when scientific instruments stopped working due to a malfunction in computer systems. Engineers were able to remotely identify the “culprit” (voltage regulator) and switch to a backup system. As early as July 19, NASA was pleased with the new images.
“I’m glad to see Hubble’s eyes reopen in space, continuing to capture images that have intrigued and inspired us for decades,” said NASA Administrator Bill Nelson.
The image below shows a pair of galaxies interacting on the left, ARP-MADORE2115-273, 297 million light-years from Earth. According to previously available information about this object, astronomers thought that this system was a so-called circular galaxy, a system of galaxies that formed when one galaxy moved through the center of the disk of another galaxy (roughly as in this view).
“New Hubble observations show that interactions in this system are much more complex,” NASA said in a post about the just-released images.
The image on the right shows the unusual spiral galaxy ARP-MADORE0002-503 about 490 million light-years from Earth. Our Milky Way is also a spiral galaxy, but different. Namely, the branches of most spiral galaxies known to us, or “hands”, come in pairs – two, four. ARP-MADORE0002-503, on the other hand, has three “hands”.
These are just the first two images from a series of observations led by Julian Dalkanton, an astronomer at the University of Washington. Hubble’s watchful “eye” will soon turn to targets like globular clusters and Jupiter, where astronomers will take a closer look at the aurora borealis of this gas giant. In return, those observations that were scheduled for the period from June 13 to July 17, but could not be held, will be postponed. Beech astronomers will not stay.
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