The Hubble Space Telescope was launched into orbit in 1990. Astronomers can see further into space with Hubble than with any telescope on Earth.
The Hubble Space Telescope is a satellite which orbits Earth at a distance of about 600
kilometres. It is a reflecting telescope and operates in a similar way to reflecting telescopes on Earth. It uses a large mirror to gather light from objects in space. The light
bounces off the primary mirror and heads to a secondary mirror which directs the light to
equipment and high-resolution cameras on the Hubble telescope.
This information is transmitted back to Earth. The major difference between the Hubble telescope and ground-based telescopes is that Hubble is outside Earth's atmosphere. This allows astronomers to observe stars and planets more clearty with less distortion. Hubble is also clear of much of Earth's gravity which bends images. Hubble can see 50 times further into space than the most powerful, optical, ground-based telescope. It has 10 times better resolution and covers an area of space 350 times bigger than can be observed from Earth. This means Hubble can look beyond our solar system, find out how stars and galaxies form and locate planets orbiting other stars.
Amazing Facts about Space :
Before people ventured into spoce, scientists sent animals, so they could observe how the animals coped with being in spoce. The dog, Laika, was the first mammal from Earth to orbit the planet. Laika died from stress and overheating during her 1957 space mission in the Russian spacecraft Sputnik 2.
As telescopes have become more powerful, they have allowed us to observe planets, galaxies and nebulae in greater detail. In 1990 the Hubble telescope was sent into orbit
Galileo discovered four moons orbiting Jupiter in January 1610.
The Indian Astronomical Observatory which sits 4517 metres above sea level, in Hanle,
India, is the world's highest observatory telescope.
Amateur astronomers use refracting telescopes The earliest telescopes were all refracting
telescopes including the famous and very simple telescope used by Galileo Galilei in the early 1600s.
The Keck telescopes, the world's largest optical telescopes, are located on the dormant Mauna Kea volcano on the island of Hawaii.
Hubble is the size of a large school bus. It fits inside the cargo bay of a space shuttle.
The Hubble Space Telescope spotted young brown dwarfs for the first time in the Orion Nebula. Brown dwarfs are so-called failed stars because they are too small to be ordinary stars — they cannot sustain nuclear fusion in their cores the way our Sun does.
Hubble is serviced and newer technology is installed by astronouts on space walks. This
means that Hubble can benefit from the same advances as ground-based telescopes.
The Hubble Space Telescope completes one full orbit of Earth every 97 minutes.
A three-stage rocket, Saturn V, was used to take astronauts to the Moon in the Apollo
spacecraft. Stage 1 burnt its fuel over 2 minutes and 30 seconds - then separated from the rest of the rocket ond fell back to Earth. Stage 2 then fired and lifted the astronauts into space. It too fell away. Finally, Stage 3 fired for 2 minutes and 30 seconds and sent Apollo into orbit around Earth. Stage 3 fired again for over five minutes to send Apollo
towards the Moon. It then fell away from the spacecraft. All spacecraft and satellites are taken into space by rockets.
The largest and most powerful rocket ever built was the Saturn V rocket.