Within the Sea Monster it’s thought that the barred spiral galaxy NGC 1073 resembles our own Milky Way. (Open University)
The Hubble Space Telescope, which turned 25 on Friday, doesn't travel through space. It's in a fairly low orbit -- 353 miles high, just around 100 miles higher than the space station -- and never leaves Earth's side. But over the past quarter of a century, its increasingly impressive resolution has brought us to strange new places.
[NASA unveils 25th anniversary image for the Hubble: Celestial fireworks in a bed of new stars]
The Hubble’s color infrared composite image from the Milky Way’s center revealed a new population of massive stars. (Open University)
The Open University is celebrating the Hubble's birthday with a set of adorable, retro-style travel postcards. Humankind may not have physically made it to the beautiful celestial getaways shown, but thanks to the Hubble and the scientists who use it, we've seen them clearly and learned lots about them.
In a few million years, scientists estimate that the Red Rectangle nebula will actually bloom into a shell of diffuse gas, known as a planetary nebula. (Open University)
Sometimes we even get to enjoy a 3-D birds-eye view:
This visualization provides a three-dimensional perspective on Hubble's 25th anniversary image of the nebula Gum 29 with the star cluster Westerlund 2 at its core. (G. Bacon, L. Frattare, Z. Levay, and F. Summers and J. Anderson/NASA, ESA)
The Sombrero galaxy is one of the biggest objects in its cluster, equivalent to 800 billion suns. (Open University)
The online postcards aren't for sale, unfortunately, but the puns are pretty delightful:
The entire Cone Nebula (made of gas and dust) is seven light-years long. (Open University) The globular cluster of stars known as Messier54 was discovered by astronomer Charles Messier way back in 1778. (Open University)
Want more Hubble? Give these a click:
Still sharp, Hubble Space Telescope turns 25 with a cloudy future
NASA unveils 25th anniversary image for the Hubble: Celestial fireworks in a bed of new stars
The Hubble spotted this smiley face in space
From the Hubble, a new image of a glittering cosmic wonderland with stars as old as the universe itself