There’s a Distant Galaxy Which Was Seen 12 Times in a Rare Image from NASA. Is It All an Optical Illusion?

This quite amazing view was captured with the help of NASA and ESA Hubble Space Telescope, and it is actually helping scientists a lot in understanding the universe. The galaxy, which appears multiple times in the image, has been nicknamed the Sunburst Arc, and it is placed almost 11 billion light-years away from us.

This Sunburst Arc galaxy is really just one simple, the regular universe, however, duplicated of it made their appearance multiple times in the image caught by scientists, because of an effect that’s called strong gravitational lensing. When talking about a gravitational lens, we refer to matter, that had the direction of light passing nearby it, which was distorted because of the gravity bending the space in the gravitational field. We know it sounds confusing, but it’s actually an illusion of light, which can make a single object appear multiple times.

The Sunburst Arc was lensed multiple times in this image with the light and mass from the giant cluster of galaxies that we can see behind. The galaxy cluster is so large that it can bend, and it can magnify the light from the distant Sunburst Arc galaxy.

This gravitational leasing has resulted in 4 bright light arcs, which are seen in the image. One arc is seen in the lower left, and the other three are seen in the top right. The galaxy appears multiple times in every arc. Hubble used a cosmic magnifying lens in order to study such an object. It actually allowed scientists to study farther away areas of the universe and to get amazing details.

The researchers that observed the Sunburst Arc think it was made in an era which started 150 million years after the Big Bang.

 

 

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