Hubble Space Telescope Facts
NASA named the world’s first space-based optical telescope after American astronomer Edwin P. Hubble (1889 — 1953). Dr. Hubble confirmed an “expanding” universe, which provided the foundation for the big-bang theory.
- Launch: April 24, 1990, from space shuttle Discovery (STS-31)
- Deployment: April 25, 1990
- First Image: May 20, 1990: Star cluster NGC 3532
- Servicing Mission 1 (STS-61): December 1993
- Servicing Mission 2 (STS-82): February 1997
- Servicing Mission 3A (STS-103): December 1999
- Servicing Mission 3B (STS-109): February 2002
- Servicing Mission 4 (STS-125): May 2009
- Length: 43.5 feet (13.2 m)
- Weight: At Launch: about 24,000 pounds (10,886 kg)
- Post SM4: about 27,000 pounds (12,247 kg)
- Maximum Diameter: 14 feet (4.2 m)
- Low Earth Orbit: Altitude of 340 miles (295 nautical miles, or 547 km), inclined 28.5 degrees to the equator
- Time to Complete One Orbit: about 95 minutes
- Speed: about 17,000 mph (27,300 kph)
- Sensitivity to Light: Ultraviolet through Infrared (115–2500 nanometers)
- Primary Mirror Diameter: 94.5 inches (2.4 m)
- Primary Mirror Weight: 1,825 pounds (828 kg)
- Secondary Mirror Diameter: 12 inches (0.3 m)
- Secondary Mirror Weight: 27.4 pounds (12.3 kg)
- In order to take images of distant, faint objects, Hubble must be extremely steady and accurate. The telescope is able to lock onto a target without deviating more than 7/1000th of an arcsecond, or about the width of a human hair seen at a distance of 1 mile.
- Hubble transmits about 150 gigabits of raw science data every week.
- Energy Source: The Sun
- Mechanism: Two 25-foot solar panels
- Power Generation (in Sunlight): about 5,500 watts
- Power Usage (Average): about 2,100 watts
- Batteries: 6 nickel-hydrogen (NiH)
- Storage Capacity: Equal to about 22 average car batteries.
Below some of the amazing images sent by the Hubble telescope