Astronomy & Science · Gratitude · Inspiration · Living

Gratitude Journal Day 11, The Hubble Space Telescope

Gratitude11

I love astronomy and always take the time to really look at many of the photos that capture the beauty of the cosmos.  To look up into the night sky and glimpse the light of the stars.  We look into the past, seeing the light reaching us after traveling for many years.  Take a peek at some photos of galaxies, the light captured by the cameras has been in transit for millions, even billions of years.

The universe is dark and mysterious, and still keeps many secrets from us.  What’s out there?  Are we alone in the universe?  What would it be like to travel around, seeing the remnants of supernovas or to get a close-up of a black hole?  What would it be like to turn around and look at our star, just a small speck of light among millions in the galaxy?

One of the most mesmerizing events in astronomy was the Hubble Deep Field photo.  Set to an empty patch of sky, astronomers opened the camera and decided to see if anything would show up.  What appears to be blurred dots that were stars, were revealed to be galaxies going back billions of years.  A thought of an empty, insignificant patch of sky may be the most important photo taken.

The size and scope of the universe is beyond our ability to really appreciate it.  The Hubble Space Telescope revealed so much.  As it approaches the end of its designed life span, it still produces much knowledge and will provide scientists so much material for study.

In fall, 2018, the Hubble replacement will launch into orbit.  The James Webb Space Telescope will take over and gaze into the cosmos.  The new technologies and capabilities (over one hundred times more powerful) will hopefully continue to the legacy of the Hubble.

I’m thankful for those who design and build instruments to allow us gaze into the sky and ponder the nature of things.  The Hubble will always be one of the great achievements of all time.  Keep looking up and appreciate our journey through the dark, mysterious universe.

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