A Hubble Sky Full Of Stars

Image Credit: ESA/Hubble and NASA

Image Credit: ESA/Hubble and NASA

August 6, 2016 – Located approximately 22,000 light-years away in the constellation of Musca (The Fly), this tightly packed collection of stars — known as a globular cluster — goes by the name of NGC 4833. This NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image shows the dazzling stellar group in all its glory.

NGC 4833 is one of the over 150 globular clusters known to reside within the Milky Way. These objects are thought to contain some of the oldest stars in our galaxy. Studying these ancient cosmic clusters can help astronomers to unravel how a galaxy formed and evolved, and give an idea of the galaxy’s age.

Globular clusters are responsible for some of the most striking sights in the cosmos, with hundreds of thousands of stars congregating in the same region of space. Hubble has observed many of these clusters during its time in orbit around our planet, each as breathtaking as the last.

The Hubble Space Telescope is a project of international cooperation between NASA and the European Space Agency. NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, manages the telescope. The Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) in Baltimore, Maryland, conducts Hubble science operations. STScI is operated for NASA by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy in Washington, D.C.

Lockheed Martin Space Systems in Sunnyvale, California, was responsible for building Hubble’s cylindrical casing and the Support Systems Module, and for integrating the telescope. Seven of Hubble’s science instruments were built by Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. in Boulder, Colorado. The Cosmic Origins Spectrograph instrument was designed by the University of Colorado Boulder.