American space agency NASA on Sunday shared the “biggest-ever” image of the Andromeda galaxy taken by the Hubble Space Telescope. The picture was taken seven years ago and is the sharpest large composite image ever taken of our galactic neighbor.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration said the image shows a 48,000 light-year stretch of the Andromeda Galaxy with over 100 million stars. The panoramic image was split into three parts in the Instagram post, with the last part showing a cluster of blue stars scattered across the image.
“This image is split into three images. The first image shows a bright spot emanating from the lower left side of the Andromeda galaxy with links extending in all directions. The light in the upper part of the image is mainly black and lamellar. Blue space with countless stars. The second photo scatters the light in bundles of purple and blue space receding to black,” NASA wrote in the caption.
When shared, the image left internet users mesmerized. It has accumulated more than one million likes. One user wrote: “It’s beautiful.” Another said: “It is true.” “Absolutely incredible,” commented the third.
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The space agency explained that because the Andromeda galaxy lies 2.5 million light-years away, thousands of star clusters can be identified. NASA said that our Milky Way Galaxy and Andromeda are similar in size and shape.
The remarkable image was first released in 2015 and was released yesterday. The 48,000-year-old galaxy appears in “natural visible-light color,” the agency said. “Because the galaxy is only 2.5 million light-years from Earth, it is a much larger target in the sky than the Hubble photographs of myriad galaxies that are billions of light-years away,” NASA explained.
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