back to article Hubble 'scope snaps 600-LIGHT-YEAR-wide pic of star-spawning nebula

The Hubble Space Telescope has had a peek behind the clouds of frenzied star-birthing supercluster the Tarantula Nebula, the nearest observable laboratory of the kind of star-making that was common in the early Universe. The Hubble mosaic, spanning a width of 600 light-years, of a star factory of more the 800,000 stars being …

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  1. David Haworth 1
    Headmaster

    grammar chequer?

    s/peak/peek/

    1. ISYS
      Headmaster

      Re: grammar chequer?

      Spelling surely?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: grammar chequer?

      s/chequer/checker/

  2. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

    Stunning photo

    How can anyone look at a picture like that, and not want to find some way, some day, to get out there and take a closer look ourselves? I know Einstein's physics says no, but...

    1. Pen-y-gors

      Re: Stunning photo

      Nah, up close it wouldn't look nearly so good.

      1. TheOtherHobbes

        Re: Stunning photo

        True - ish. Up close it's as bright as the full moon.

        So not quite as spectacular to the naked (alien) eye. But still pretty damn spectacular.

        And from that location in the Magellanic Clouds, you'd also see a spiral view of the Milky Way.

        How cool would that be?

        1. Adam 1

          Re: Stunning photo

          > How cool would that be?

          Quite. No more than a few Kelvin.

      2. Evil Auditor Silver badge

        Re: Stunning photo

        Pen-y-gors, that's what I thought, too. For example, seeing a spiral galaxy from far away is amazing. Sitting within, well, it's also quite impressive but mostly void. Still, I wonder how such a nebula looks close up if at all.

    2. TitterYeNot

      Re: Stunning photo

      "I know Einstein's physics says no, but..."

      I don't think Einstein's theories ever said no, just that you would need an extremely powerful propulsion system and an awful lot of energy to make the journey within a human lifetime, plus the technology to allow a ship and crew to survive several hundred G's of acceleration / deceleration, potentially for a number decades (so we're not going there any time soon.)

      And just as importantly, you'd need a crew who could cope with the knowledge that, due to time dilation, by the time they got there everyone they'd ever known back on earth would have been dead for at least 170,000 years.

      But you're right, stunning photo, and wow, what a journey of discovery that would be...

      1. frustin

        Re: Stunning photo

        "...by the time they got there everyone they'd ever known back on earth would have been dead for at least 170,000 years."

        plus everyone would have forgotten that you'd even gone at all. Monkeys would rule earth by then anyway.

        1. earl grey
          Unhappy

          Too late

          The monkeys already rule earth.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Too late

            Monkeys? We're apes....

      2. Isn't it obvious?

        Re: Stunning photo

        Hundreds of G? I don't think so. A simple 1G acceleration will get them there in their lifetimes. (Note that in the Earth's reference frame they're already going nearly c in just a year, and from then on it's just a matter of increasing the time dilation factor.)

      3. Sander van der Wal

        Re: Stunning photo

        That would be a bonus, no?

        But by the time people can do this, they would probably be able to keep people alive for much longer time spans. One way of doing that is by flying around the Local Group at reasonable speed and agreeing on meeting up at certain points in time.

    3. Gene Cash Silver badge

      Re: Stunning photo

      "All I see are the lights of a billion places I'll never go"

      (from http://www.schlockmercenary.com/blog/stargazing-merch-and-challenge-coin-update)

      1. Tom 7

        Re: Stunning photo

        If you go to APOD @ nasa you can find a link to a trip to the moon!

    4. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: Stunning photo

      > to get out there and take a closer look ourselves?

      Not if there are Tarantulas

    5. Measurer

      Re: Stunning photo

      I can't believe no one's done it already, so...

      'MY GOD, ITS FULL OF STARS!'

  3. Michael H.F. Wilkinson

    It is really the scale that makes the Tarantula unique

    An absolutely awesome image from Hubble again. The Tarantula Nebula (seen quite easily with binoculars from the southern hemisphere) is spectacular in its scale, but several other star-forming regions in our galaxy are of course much closer (the Orion Nebula, for example).

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Tarantula Nebula, the magnificent

    And STILL some people believe that the earth was 'created' 6000 years ago.

    That sure is some powerful cognitive dissonance.

    1. Evil Auditor Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: Tarantula Nebula, the magnificent

      What is your problem, infidel? Surely, those nebulas et al were created +/- 6000 years ago just like fossils and all was: to appear very old! Thereby proving that earth and things like that were created by a very, very intelligent creator.

      Yeah, mine's the one with "Stupidity for Dummies" in its pocket.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Re: Tarantula Nebula, the magnificent

        The world was created 44 years agon on 1 Jan 1970 - just check your computer's time() function

    2. smartypants

      Re: Tarantula Nebula, the magnificent

      Bless. Someone downvoted that comment, presumably because they don't think there really can be people who think that the earth was created 6000 years ago.

      But it's true!

      Sometimes, truth is stranger than fiction.

      http://www.answersingenesis.org/

  5. Annihilator
    Paris Hilton

    Timescales

    "These pockets will likely eventually merge into larger clusters, helping researchers to answer questions like whether supermassive stars always form in clusters or whether they can be born in isolation"

    Would have thought that it will take millenia before there's any sort of clustering or merging? This'll help researchers in about half a million years, no?

    1. Pascal Monett Silver badge
      Coat

      It's called planning ahead.

      Or job security.

      Ok, I got my coat.

    2. JDReg529

      Re: Timescales

      Had the exact same thought when I read that.

  6. Ian 55

    Where's the link to the bigger version of the spaaace pic?

    Lazy...

    1. Adam 1

      Re: Where's the link to the bigger version of the spaaace pic?

      And how many light weeks per pixel is it?

  7. Ian Michael Gumby
    Alien

    Is it just me..

    Or does the picture look like a big giant flying spaghetti monster?

  8. Pete the not so great

    Now thats what I call a ...

    a power cloud!

  9. I am replete.

    "....These pockets will likely eventually merge into larger clusters, helping researchers to answer questions...."

    Erm, yes, I suppose so.

    But at that time will there be anyone around here to observe it?

    Will there be anything here at all?

  10. promytius

    my yearly electric bill

    would just about cover the cost of one pixel for one second. Who Pays for all that stuff to shine so bright and pretty? Is it regulated, government controlled/sponsored? Can I get a copy?

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