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Rare photos taken by the Hubble Telescope's camera

A camera on the Hubble Telescope has snapped a spectacular series of rare images.

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Credit: NASA, ESA, and the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA).
 
The Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2 (WFPC2) on the Hubble telescope has captured the rare event of four of Saturn's moons lining up in front of the planet.
 
The snapshot which was taken on 24th February was taken on the WFPC2, the camera behind most of the famous Hubble pictures. This is the telescope's main camera and observes almost everything, recording razor-sharp images of faraway objects.
 
The camera features 48 filters which gives scientists the chance to study a range of wavelengths from ultraviolet to near-infrared. For this particular image the camera used three filters the F675W (R) (red), F555W (V) (green) and F439W (B) (blue) and the image is made up of separate exposures all taken on the WFPC2.
 
The WFPC2 has four postage stamp-sized CCDs which records objects that are 1,000 million times fainter than the naked eye can see and each one contains 640,000 pixels. The WFPC2 is made up of four cameras in total: one planetary camera and three which look at a wider field. The planetary camera concentrates on one small section of the sky – compacting the same number of pixels as the wide-field cameras into a smaller area which means it produces images with greater detail.
 
More pictures and information can be found on the Hubble website.
Saturn was roughly 775 million miles (1.25 billion kilometers) from Earth when this picture was taken.
 
Credit: NASA, ESA, and the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)
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Comments


User_Removed 16 17.9k 8 Norway
18 Mar 2009 11:19AM
(Hmmmm.... Note to self. Be a good boy for the rest of the year and ask Santa for one of these...)

Wink

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Randle 14 118 United Kingdom
18 Mar 2009 12:11PM
I took similar pictures to these until I cleaned my sensor! Smile
StuartAt 15 1.1k 8 United Kingdom
19 Mar 2009 11:15AM
I'd love a 'real world' comparison of what the camera(s) could do. You know, a kind of 'cats whiskers at 2 miles' type thing! (this is the clean version of what I was going to write!)

I'm sure its doable - but I can't quite get my head round the calculation!
StuartAt 15 1.1k 8 United Kingdom
19 Mar 2009 11:26AM
OK, coz I was curious I did a quick calculation. Based on the moon Titan (as it is the only one named, and the largest of the lot), Hubble would be capable of resolving an item 1mm across at a distance of 15.5km. Impressive - but even more impressive when you consider that Titan is nowhere near the smallest moon in the pic!

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