There are more known stars in the Universe than grains of sand on all the beaches on Earth. As for galaxies, meaning the structures where stars gather, they are trillions in the observable Universe. Assuming that the real size of the physical reality we live in far exceeds the boundaries of what scientists call the ‘observable Universe,’ it means that there are even far more galaxies out there than we can probably even write.
The good old Hubble telescope that’s operated by both NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA) once again proves to be very active, despite so many people falsely assuming that the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) will completely take its place. But we’re glad to see that it wasn’t the case and that Hubble is always ready for some action!
Welcome, Arp 248!
Arp 248 is the name of a newfound galactic triplet located 200 million light-years away from Earth, all the way in the Virgo constellation. In the new image of the majestic celestial structure spotted by Hubble, we can see two large spiral galaxies sharing galactic material with one another, while another galaxy is in the same frame:
It’s #HubbleFriday time! ⏰
The two large spiral galaxies in this image are part of the galactic triplet known as Arp 248, which resides about 200 million light-years away in the constellation Virgo.
— Hubble (@NASAHubble) November 4, 2022
The name of the constellation comes from the Latin word ‘maiden.’ Virgo is positioned between Leo to the west part of the sky and Libra to the east. We’re also talking about the second-largest constellation in the sky after Hydra. The Virgo constellation is also home to stars such as Epsilon Virginis, Spica A, Eta Virginis, Delta Virginis, Ross 128, and more.
The Hubble telescope is about the same size as a large school bus, and it weighs 24,500 pounds. The telescope uses energy from the Sun thanks to its solar panels that measure 25 feet.
Hubble is supposed to be capable of seeing up to 13.4 billion light-years away into the depths of the Universe.