Sunday, January 25, 2015

The Andromeda Galaxy and the Pillars of Creation

This post is a long time coming, because NASA released this picture almost three weeks ago. The video I'm posting below really throws the sheer size of the universe in your face...particularly the sheer size of the Andromeda Galaxy (galaxy M31 for anyone who wants to be technical about it).

Take a look. This picture contains more than 200 billion stars (that's 200,000,000,000 stars). Every single point of light is a star, and the average distance between stars is roughly 4.5 light years, so you can imagine the density and scale of this.

Enjoy! It's always awesome to see new perspectives.

Another amazing picture Hubble recently took revisited one of the most famous (if not the most famous) picture in astronomy: the Pillars of Creation. The original picture is put side-by-side with the newest picture so that you can see just how much detail Hubble is able to capture now as compared to 20 years ago.

Beautiful, huh? The universe is amazing. (And both Andromeda and the Eagle Nebula are referred to in passing in Embassy and Resonance).