Today we want to show you a selection of the most amazing and incredible images of space.
At first glance, it looks like this photo captures an atom or some other micro-particle, but it is not.
A pale blue dot. NASA/Voyager-1.
On February 14, 1990, the U.S. National Aerospace Administration (NASA) gave the Voyager 1 probe a special command, as requested by the famous astronomer Carl Sagan. At this point, the probe had already completed its main tasks, crossed Neptune’s orbit and was moving toward the Kuiper Belt. He redirected the camera and took a series of pictures of the solar system, including this one. It showed a faint blue dot – the Earth, which was at that moment 6.05 billion kilometers away from the probe.
Transit of the Moon across the Earth’s disk. NASA/Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR).
Another interesting photo from the NASA photo series. There was a lot of controversy around it: many supporters of conspiracy theories thought that this photo is proof that there is no space as such, that we all live under an alien or divine dome. They came to this conclusion because the moon does not look realistic and has an unusual color in the photo.
This photo was taken with a DSCOVR camera, which is not designed for colorful images, but is used to study the chemical composition of Earth’s atmosphere. Its 10 sensors capture images in narrow ranges ranging from infrared to ultraviolet, which are needed to determine the content of oxygen, hydrogen, carbon dioxide and various volatile compounds in the atmosphere.
A series of images showing transit.
In this regard, DSCOVR cannot boast of good color reproduction. By processing images from different parts of the spectrum and combining them into a single image, it is possible to get a familiar image of the Earth.
But the Moon has no oxygen, hydrogen or other gases, only rocks, and DSCOVR and its camera are not designed to identify rocks and cannot properly render their color. That’s why the Moon looks like low-grade computer graphics in the pictures.
North Pole of the Sun, ESA/Ulysses.
In the following space image, we can see the North Pole of the Sun. This is a composite image obtained by European scientists at ESA (European Space Agency) using the Ulysses (Odyssey) probe. It’s impossible to see this part of the Sun’s surface from Earth.
Interestingly, the Ulysses probe does not have a conventional video or photo camera at all. It takes pictures in the ultraviolet, gamma and X-ray bands, and this photo was obtained after processing the data from the probe by scientists from ESA.
Black hole at the center of the Messier 87 galaxy, ESA/NASA/EHT.
A unique complex of EHT (Event Horizon Telescope) radio telescopes has obtained the first photograph of a huge black hole in the central part of galaxy M87.
To create this unique image, supercomputers had to process an incredible amount of data, about 5 petabytes! This is so much that it was easier to transport the hard drives by plane than to send the data over the Internet. All of the system’s radio telescopes were carefully calibrated to produce a single image.
At the moment it is the only direct image of the black hole in the world.
If we compare the obtained image of the black hole with the images obtained from the simulation, we see that they are very similar.
A simulation of what a black hole at the center of the Messier 87 galaxy should look like.
Another stunning photo of space is an unusual phenomenon that was captured by the Galileo space probe on Io, a satellite of Jupiter.
A volcanic eruption on Jupiter’s satellite Io. NASA/Galileo.
At first glance, it is not quite clear whether this is a hurricane or a volcanic eruption. However, scientists are well aware that Io has the greatest volcanic activity among all the bodies of the solar system (more than 400 active volcanoes have been counted on the surface of the satellite planet). This is due to Io’s proximity to Jupiter and its highly elongated orbit, which leads to strong tidal friction in the bowels of the satellite and, as a result, their heating.
The universe is immense – that’s what immediately comes to mind when you look at photo below. This is the deepest photo of space taken to date in the optical range, and if you try hard enough, you can count about 5,500 galaxies on it.
The Hubble Deep Field. NASA/Hubble.
This image was published in 2012 and represents a very small portion of the night sky. It is so small that if you stretch out your hand, you could cover it with the fingernail of one finger. At the same time, all objects visible in the image are so dim that we cannot see them not only with the naked eye, but even with amateur telescopes. Therefore, if we just look at this part of the sky, we will see only darkness.
The last picture makes you think about how big the universe is and that compared to it, the Earth is like a single atom compared to ordinary objects. If Giordano Bruno was technically not quite right about the infinity of the universe, he was still very close to the truth. From our point of view, the universe can indeed be conventionally considered infinite.