Clearest view yet of massive star cluster

A new image processing technique has yielded the clearest view yet of an extraordinary star cluster located about 169,000 light years from Earth. The new technique, called photometric reconstruction, was applied to a photograph of the star cluster Rl36 that was obtained with the Planetary Camera onboard the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. It reveals that there are at least 47 stars located within an area 1.6 light years across in Rl36. (One light year is approximately 5.8 trillion miles long.) In contrast, the Sun is about 4 light years from the nearest known star, Proxima Centauri.

"Our reconstructed photo of R136 shows what the raw Hubble photos will look like after the 1993 repair mission to fix the telescope's spherical aberration," says Goddard astronomer, Dr. Sally Heap.


NASA/ESA/Goddard Space Flight Center

About the Image

NASA press release
NASA caption
Release date:1 April 1992, 07:00
Size:2024 x 1670 px

About the Object

Name:30 Doradus, R136
Type:Local Universe : Star : Grouping : Cluster
Distance:170000 light years
Category:Star Clusters

Image Formats

Large JPEG
618.0 KB
Screensize JPEG
161.2 KB

Colours & filters

Ultraviolet Hubble Space Telescope
547 nm Hubble Space Telescope

Also see our

Accelerated by CDN77