Animation showing how Hubble spotted four images of the same supernova

This animation shows how the huge galaxy cluster MACS J1149+2223 — whose light took over 5 billion years to reach us — bends the light from a supernova lying behind the cluster so that Hubble captures four images of the supernova.

The huge mass of the cluster and one of the galaxies within it is bending the light from a supernova behind them and creating four separate images of the supernova. The light has been magnified and distorted due to gravitational lensing and as a result the images are arranged around the elliptical galaxy in a formation known as an Einstein cross.


About the Video

Release date:5 March 2015, 20:00
Related releases:heic1505
Duration:36 s
Frame rate:30 fps

About the Object

Name:MACS J1149+2223
Type:Early Universe : Star : Evolutionary Stage : Supernova
Early Universe : Galaxy : Grouping : Cluster



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