A fabulous image captured by NASA and ESA’s Hubble Space Telescope depicts a segment of the sky in the Sagittarius constellation. The telescope used its Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) to gift us with the stunning picture.
The section is depicted in accurate detail with reddish and bright blue stars that are spread all over the frame, while on the background, many other distant stars and galaxies are shining.
The Hubble Space Telescope uses mirrors to catch the light and create images, like all the other contemporary telescopes. Its secondary mirror is backed up by struts, also called telescope spiders, organized in a cross array, and they diffract the entering light. Diffraction is the small bending of light as it goes by the edge of an object.
As said in the press release on Hubble Space Telescope’s official website, the image depicts a region of the constellation Sagittarius, but next to it there is a cluster known as Terzan 5 which appears to be the remains of a smaller galaxy the Milky Way consumed.
Hubble Space Telescope Captures Incredible Image of Sagittarius Constellation
Terzan 5 has an aggregation of peculiar stars in it which are called ‘millisecond pulsars.’ A pulsar is a neutron star, the incredibly thick heart of a colossal star that exploded as supernovae. Neutron stars are the second denser celestial things after black holes.
These stars have some uncommon proprieties such as an incredibly strong magnetic field. They also rotate rapidly, sometimes in a second or less. What makes the magnetic field, so insanely strong is the locked energy within the spin. The energy goes along the magnetic field axis, incredibly concentrated into a couple of rays, one for both magnetic poles. If those rays go over the Earth, a glitch of emission can be seen with every spin, and the star appears to pulse, thence the name.
Some pulsars cycle common objects such as the Sun. If they are sufficiently close, elements from the object can be absorbed into the neutron star by its incredible gravity. This ends up making the neutron star rotate even faster. Some of them transform into pulsars that can spin hundreds of times per second. The fastest one discovered rotates at a ratio of 716 times per second. This is approximately once per millisecond, hence the name ‘millisecond pulsars.’
Other findings can be deducted from this observation as well, such as the amount of cosmic dust between the Earth and Terzan 5, what types of objects shelters and more.