HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO THE HUBBLE SPACE TELESCOPE
Image Credit & Copyright: NASA of the release of HST from the bay of STS-31 Space Shuttle Discovery.
On April 24, 1990; STS-31 Space Shuttle Discovery launched from Kennedy Space Center, Launch Complex 39B (LC-39B). It carried within its payload bay a 2.4 m (7.9 ft.) Ritchey-Chretien Telescope that bore the name of one of the world’s most prominent astronomers……Hubble.
The Hubble Space Telescope is one of the few instruments of science that has not only changed the world and its views toward the universe and our place in it but also did it with incredible photographs. As the never before seen images flooded into our rudimentary personal computers at dial up speeds, they helped spawn new generations of NASA fans, scientists, engineers and lovers of the universe.
I’m not going to spend a ton of time telling you all what you already know about ole Hubble but instead spread the love. Post your favorite photo of Hubble or Hubble photo and wish a Happy Birthday to one of the most iconic scientific instruments ever devised.
You know, I understand that this is a pipe dream but it’s too bad that Hubble couldn’t end its life in a museum where it belongs and not turned into a fireball upon reentering Earth’s atmosphere at the end of its life which will likely be this, or early next decade. It certainly will not happen through the government so we can only hope that its importance in history falls upon one of the world’s billionaires. How cool would it be to develop a capture vehicle that captures, seals and returns Hubble to Earth?! I think that would be a great short term challenge to the young and growing private space industry.
NASA Hubble Space Telescope homepage: http://hubblesite.org/
European Space Agency (ESA) Hubble Space Telescope homepage: http://spacetelescope.org/
NASA Hubble page: http://asd.gsfc.nasa.gov/archive/hubble/
NASA Homepage on Hubble: http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/hubble/main/
Hubble Heritage Project: http://heritage.stsci.edu/