The Hubble Space Telescope ~ dnd

300px-Sts109-708-038a Nineteen years ago last month, the Hubble Space Telescope went operational.  Now STS-125 (Atlantis) is performing the final maintenance mission on the Hubble.  Was it worth it?

Most of what most us know about the Hubble are the spectacular images of 140px-Eagle_nebula_pillars galaxies far, far away.  But there’s a lot more to the Hubble than meets the eye.  The Hubble Space Telescope (HST) was named for the famed American astronomer Edwin Hubble, who was first to discover that the universe is expanding.  HST has accurately determined the rate of the expansion of the universe.  HST has advanced work on black holes.  HST documented the collision of the Shoemaker-Levy 9 comet with Jupiter.  The scientific list goes on and on and on.250px-Jupiter_showing_SL9_impact_sites

The HST hasn’t cured cancer or created peace in the Middle East.  The HST won’t provide advances in health care or fix the economy.  But aside from all the remarkable scientific discoveries, direct and indirect from the HST program, perhaps one of the biggest benefits is the ability to inspire future generations to get involved in science and engineering.

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17 Comments

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17 responses to “The Hubble Space Telescope ~ dnd

  1. dog's eye view

    Spectacular shuttle launch yesterday. Hope the Hubble repair mission goes flawlessly.

    We do need more scientists and engineers and just plain enthralled and curious people in our society. If the Hubble helps add to that contingent, it is well worth it.

  2. You can get the latest hubble info at:

    http://hubblesite.org/

  3. BevnTempe

    My husband has been following the daily Twitter before the launch. Yesterday, he was glued to the laptop, even walking around the house with it, following the progress and live videos from NASA. He’s a big fan of Hubble.

  4. trout boy aka Horsedooty

    I used to make a joke of having to make a service call to Hubble when I was a tech rep. I would tell my boss I had a call to make in outer space rather than deal with some problem or travel he wanted me to attend to right then.

  5. dog's eye view

    Hi Bev; good morning.

    It’s exciting to follow the shuttle and NASA channel stuff. One stopped taking it for granted after the Challenger and then Columbia tragedies.

    Was in California once during a shuttle landing at Edwards. Loved being awakened by the first sonic boom during re-entry and listening for the second.

    An experience that is also not long for this world.

    R&D and imagination are so crucial for our development.

    Don’t think you will ever find an astronaut without renewed appreciation for our beautiful Mother Earth.

    There’s a question: any renowned astronauts/space career personnel involved in combatting global warming?

    (Yeah, they have big carbon footprints. With the launches and jet travel and training. But they can conserve and preserve and advocate too. They are used to thinking on fragile environments for human habitation.)

  6. eprof2

    Nice post, dnd. Your last sentence is spot on: Kids, young and old, need the Hubble for inspiration and lives immersed in science.

    Yes, the D-Backs went down on a 13 run count last night! Now we are all alone in the basement.

  7. trout boy aka Horsedooty

    so how did the Rocks and the D-backs fall so far so fast? Didn’t they actually play and win the World Series not to long ago?

  8. “ability to inspire future generations to get involved in science and engineering.”

    Exactly the same reason we need manned space flight too!

  9. dnd

    Doots,
    Rockies were swept in the 2007 World Series by the Red Sox. We could use some hitting.

  10. MSNBC Anchors Erupt Over Miss California Press Conference: “Can I Vomit Right Now?” (VIDEO)

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/05/12/msnbc-anchors-erupt-over_n_202214.html

  11. Rahm Emanuel And Nancy Pelosi’s Photographic Chemistry (SLIDESHOW)

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/05/12/rahm-emanuel-and-nancy-pe_n_202035.html

    This is funny.

  12. dnd

    Emanuel and Pelosi need to get a room…

  13. I told you it was funny dnd!

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