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NASA Space Science

Hubble Neatly Captures Messier's Ancient Stars 31

Posted by timothy
from the leaves-them-on-public-display dept.
New submitter DevotedSkeptic writes "Hubble has produced a crisp image of the Messier 56 Globular Cluster. Messier originally noted that this object was nebula without stars. When he originally viewed the cluster in 1779, telescopes were not powerful enough to see more than a fuzzy ball. The crisp focused view we get from Hubble enables us to easily see the globular cluster and ancient stars contained within. Comparing observations from Hubble with results from the standard theory of stellar evolution, scientists have calculated the age Messier 56 at 13 billion years."
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Hubble Neatly Captures Messier's Ancient Stars

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  • its (Score:4, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 26, 2012 @01:16AM (#41127573)

    its full of stars

    • by Sulphur (1548251)

      its full of stars

      Thirteen billion years to slashdot.

      • by hairyfeet (841228)

        Looking at shots like that I'm always amazed how anyone can truly believe there isn't life out there. Just look at how many stars you have out there, if even only 1 in 10 million have a planet in the right zone you are talking about hundreds of millions of planets!

        Now whether or not one of the older civilizations have developed FTL travel and is now poking the monkeys is another debate entirely, but I don't see how anyone can look at a picture like that and believe we're the only ones looking out at pictu

    • My God, you beat me to it.

  • by esldude (1157749) on Sunday August 26, 2012 @01:29AM (#41127631)
    http://www.amazon.com/The-Day-We-Found-Universe/dp/0307276600/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1345962369&sr=8-1&keywords=the+day+we+discovered+the+universe#reader_0307276600 [amazon.com] Delightful book about how we came to figure out there was more than the milky way, and just how much more. Details the history of the instruments used, the scientists involved and the ideas that battled it out until we understood how big things were. The Hubble is in the lineage of important instruments helping us learn how big all of space is. All the way back to 13 billion years or so of it.
  • by wonkey_monkey (2592601) on Sunday August 26, 2012 @01:35AM (#41127639) Homepage

    "Hubble has produced a crisp image of the Messier 56 Globular Cluster. Messier originally noted that this object was a nebula without stars. When he originally viewed the cluster in 1779, telescopes were not powerful enough to see more than a fuzzy ball. The crisp focused view we get from Hubble enables us to easily see the globular cluster and the ancient stars contained within. Comparing observations from Hubble with results from the standard theory of stellar evolution, scientists have calculated the age of Messier 56 at 13 billion years."

    And this was an easy one.

  • Really slow news day. This is a pretty photo looking for a press release, IMHO. Today, even moderate amateur telescopes resolve M-56. That they improved the H-R diagram using HST, is good science, but hardly /. worthy.
  • So, at 13 billion years old then this gobular cluster contains stars that are almost as old as the Universe, and older than our galaxy. Makes you wonder, if there are any worlds there (I know probaby metal poor) then any nascent life would have had so much time to get going, even under the feeble light of a red dwarf, that it could well be anything by now. Fascinating.

The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries, is not "Eureka!" (I found it!) but "That's funny ..." -- Isaac Asimov

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