About a century ago, astronomers were certain that our own Milky Way is the only galaxy from the entire Universe. It took for an American astronomer named Edwin Hubble to change all that in the ’20s – he discovered that our galaxy is one of the billions of other galaxies present out there. Also, in that time, he made another huge discovery that now lies at the foundation of the Big Bang Theory itself: that the Universe is constantly expanding, and therefore it’s not static as even Einstein believed.
But after a century, in 2020, we have much more powerful tools to examine the “big stuff” out there. One of these tools has the name of Edwin Hubble himself, and now it brings to us another exciting insight of a far-away galaxy:
NGC 2008 is its name, and delighting our eyes is its game. It is located 426 million light-years away in the constellation of Pictor, so you have an insanely amount of space to travel if you somehow develop a faster speed than the speed of light.
Discovered two centuries ago
NGC 2008 was discovered almost two centuries ago, in December 1838 by the English astronomer John Herschel. However, nobody thought in that time that they are dealing with another galaxy. Although we may be fascinated by its beautiful spiral shape, Hubble astronomers are explaining to us that such galaxies are omnipresent in the Universe. They are further stating something that it’s already obvious for the most of us:
These grand, spiraling collections of billions of stars are among the most wondrous sights that have been captured by telescopes such as Hubble, and are firmly embedded in astronomical iconography.
While the Hubble telescope has an impressive amount of pictures taken at galaxies and stars, we are hoping that in the future we will also be able to find out what is dwelling on the exoplanets from those galaxies. Maybe even highly intelligent aliens?