Stars & Galaxies
How do planets, stars, galaxies and cosmic structure come into being? Astronomers have been studying stars for thousands of years, it is only in the past 30 or so years that they have been able to employ instruments that detect light across the entire electromagnetic spectrum—from radio waves to gamma rays—to peer into the dusty clouds where stars are born in our own Galaxy.
Hubble's discoveries over the years have helped astronomers understand everything from how stars form in our own galaxy to the composition of the atmospheres of planets outside our solar system.
If we are to comprehend how the Universe makes stars – and planets that orbit them today – we must continue these studies with ever more powerful telescopes.
Two of the most exciting challenges to astrophysics in the next decades are to understand the physical processes that lead to star and planet formation and to characterize the properties of extra-solar planets. ...Telescopes
Andromeda Galaxy: The nearest big spiral galaxy to the Milky Way is the Andromeda galaxy. Appearing as a smudge of light to the naked eye in the constellation Andromeda, this galaxy is about twice as big as the Milky Way but very similar in many ways. While most galaxies are rushing away as the universe expands, Andromeda is the only big spiral galaxy galaxy moving towards the Milky Way. . ... Multimedia