Hubble Looks Through Cosmic Zoom Lens (6 cropped images)

A selection of cropped images from a NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope Advanced Camera for Surveys view of one of the most massive galaxy clusters known, called Abell 1689. These close-ups show 'lensed' images of background galaxies that have been brightened and smeared by the gravitational bending of light by the foreground cluster.

The yellow-white objects are the cluster galaxies located 2.2 billion light-years away. The blue arcs are the distorted images of background galaxies located billions of light-years farther away than Abell 1689.

The distribution of both 'normal' and dark matter, and the alignment of the background galaxies determine the amount of distortion. In a perfectly aligned gravitational lens the background object would be smeared into an 'Einstein ring.' Instead, there are numerous ring sections or arcs corresponding to individual galaxies.

Credit:

NASA, N. Benitez (JHU), T. Broadhurst (Racah Institute of Physics/The Hebrew University), H. Ford (JHU), M. Clampin (STScI), G. Hartig (STScI), G. Illingworth (UCO/Lick Observatory), the ACS Science Team and ESA

About the Image

NASA press release
NASA caption
Id:opo0301b
Type:Collage
Release date:7 January 2003, 18:20
Size:3000 x 2400 px

About the Object

Name:Abell 1689
Type:• Early Universe : Galaxy : Grouping : Supercluster
• X - Galaxies Images/Videos
Distance:z=0.183 (redshift)

Colours & filters

BandWavelengthTelescope
Optical
B
475 nm Hubble Space Telescope
ACS
Optical
R
625 nm Hubble Space Telescope
ACS
Infrared
I
775 nm Hubble Space Telescope
ACS
Infrared
Z
850 nm Hubble Space Telescope
ACS

Image Formats

Large JPEG
2.2 MB
Screensize JPEG
430.4 KB

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