I have been a lifelong devotee of astronomical research and, of course, space exploration. The fantasies of my childhood have become the realities of my adult life. And the wonders never cease. On January 5, NASA released an image of our closest large galactic neighbor, the Andromeda Galaxy. The complete image contains a staggering 1.5 billion pixels. The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope captured the full image, which is made up of 411 Hubble images, and contains over a 100 million stars and spans more than 40,000 light years. The entire image is too large to display; it would take over 600 HD television screens to display it. So, I have to settle for reproducing a reduced presentation here. The first photo below is a cropped image of part of the galaxy. The second photo is a zoom close up of just a very small portion of the first image. Each little dot is a star. I have included a link below that allows you to zoom in on the first image with an incredible clarity. I highly recommend it. And we here on Earth have the gumption to think that we are something special in the universe. God’s chosen people my ass…

Sharpest ever view of the Andromeda GalaxyA cropped section of the NASA Hubble/ESA telescope’s image of the Andromeda Galaxy. Photo courtesy of NASA.

Andromeda ZoomThis screen shot is a zoom close up of just a very small section of the photo above. Each little dot is a star.

If you really want to zoom in on the image in high quality I recommend clicking the link below:

A video on YouTube also is an interesting viewing experience:


© 2015 nightpoet all rights reserved

Categories: Perspective, Photography, Science | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

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2 thoughts on “INSIGNIFICANCE 101

  1. nannus

    Clearly the universe is not about us.

    • nannus

      … and it is somehow consoling that there is so much stuff out there that we cannot destroy (although the destruction we cause down here is a pity).

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