Edelman Planetarium Celebrates Hubble Space Telescope's 15th BirthdayApril 12, 2005
The Edelman Planetarium at Rowan University will celebrate the NASA Hubble Space Telescope?s 15th birthday on Monday, April 25, at 1 p.m. by unveiling new mural-sized Hubble images of the well-known spiral galaxy M51 and an eerie-looking tower of gas in the Eagle Nebula. The images will remain on permanent display outside the planetarium in the lobby of Science Hall. Rowan is one of only two places in the Delaware Valley scheduled to unveil the images from NASA?s Space Telescope Science Institute.
The 4-foot-by-6-foot image of M51 reveals striking details of how clusters of stars are born in the galaxy?s long, curving spiral arms. The 3-foot-by-6-foot photograph of the Eagle Nebula shows a gaseous landscape sculpted by ultraviolet light from a group of massive, hot, young stars. These views are among the largest and sharpest images ever taken by the Hubble telescope.
The Earth-orbiting observatory was deployed in space on April 25, 1990. Hubble orbits above Earth?s murky atmosphere, which distorts light from celestial objects. During its 15 years of viewing the universe, the Hubble telescope has taken more than 700,000 snapshots of celestial objects such as galaxies, dying stars and giant gas clouds, the birthplace of stars. The telescope gave the world a front-row seat to watch chunks of a comet slam into the giant planet Jupiter. Hubble also photographed galaxies that existed billions of years ago, when the universe was a youngster.
After the 1 p.m. official unveiling, Edelman Planetarium Director Keith Johnson will conduct a show called ?Hubble?s Greatest Hits,? which will detail some of the most stunning images the Hubble has obtained during the last 15 years and discuss their scientific importance.
The Edelman Planetarium is located in Science Hall on the north side of Rt. 322 on Rowan?s campus. Parking is available off Rt. 322 and off Bowe Blvd.
The April 25 show is free of charge. For more information, call Johnson at (856) 256-4389. For news about the planetarium and its programs call (856) 256-5460.
Additional information about the Hubble Space Telescope is available at http://hubblesite.org/.