The Hubble Space Telescope has been orbiting around the Earth and owes its name to Edwin Hubble who made the discovery of galaxies that lay outside the Milky Way as well as for his creation of Hubbles Law that calculated the rate at which the universe is getting bigger. The Hubble Space Telescope is able to send sharp optical images of very distant objects and has, since being launched in 1990, become astronomys most important instrument.
The Hubble Space Telescope has provided man with some of most ground-breaking observations and helped astronomers to comprehend the fundamental problems troubling astrophysicists. It is able; thanks to its Ultra Deep Field provide the most sensitive astronomical optical images that have thus far been taken by mankind.
Many Ground-Breaking Discoveries
In the twenty odd years of its existence it has proved to be a valuable aid in the study of outer space and has revealed many mysteries, but its life is coming to an end and with failing gyroscopes it may not last longer than 2007, and if another failure is to happen, it will lose its ability to point and thus become unusable.
It requires replacements with the help of a manned service mission, and is in need of a re-boost to increase the diameter of its orbit so that it does not re-enter the Earths atmosphere, due to drag. With proper servicing, the Hubble Space Telescope will be able to function until 2013 by which time a new successor will have been launched.
The Hubble Space Telescope has been (quite literally) instrumental in resolving some of astronomy long standing problems, and has also provided results that have given rise to new theories to explain them. One of its primary objectives was to measure distances to Cepheid variable stars in a manner that was more accurate than ever before, and thus constrain the value of the Hubble constant.
The Hubble Space Telescope helped to better the estimates of the Hubble constant to reduce errors from 50 percent and bring such errors down to a meager ten percent. In addition, it has also helped to refine the age of the universe while also casting doubts on the longevity of the universe.
The Hubble Space Telescope has also been able to provide images of the collision of Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 with Jupiter in 1994, and other major discoveries include proto-planetary disks in the Orion Nebula, proof for the incidence of extra-solar planets as well as the optical counterparts of unexplained gamma-ray bursts.
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