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This image, called the Hubble eXtreme Deep Field (XDF), combines Hubble observations taken over the past decade of a small patch of sky in the constellation of Fornax. With a total of over two million seconds of exposure time, it is the deepest image of the Universe ever made, combining data from previous images including the Hubble Ultra Deep Field (taken in 2002 and 2003) and Hubble Ultra Deep Field Infrared (2009). The image covers an area less than a tenth of the width of the full Moon, making it just a 30 millionth of the whole sky. Yet even in this tiny fraction of the sky, the long exposure reveals about 5500 galaxies, some of them so distant that we see them when the Universe was less than 5% of its current age. The Hubble eXtreme Deep Field image contains several of the most distant objects ever identified. Credit: NASA

Watch Live Webcast: What Does Hubble’s Deepest Image of the Universe Reveal?

Article Updated: 23 Dec , 2015


Astronomers using the Hubble Space Telescope recently released the deepest image of the sky ever obtained which reveals the faintest and most distant galaxies ever seen. The Hubble eXtreme Deep Field (XDF) is like a time machine, allowing us to see at how some galaxies looked just 450 million years after the Universe’s birth in the Big Bang.

Want to know more? The Kavli Foundation is hosting a live Q&A webcast on October 4 from 18:00- 18:30 UTC (11-11:30 am PDT) to provide the public a chance to ask questions of leading scientists about the image and the science behind it. Pascal Oesch, a Hubble Fellow at the University of California at Santa Cruz, and Michele Trenti, a researcher at the Kavli Institute for Cosmology, Cambridge at the University of Cambridge in the U.K., will discuss the image and answer questions about how the image was created and what it reveals about the early Universe. Watch the webcast below or at this link. Viewers may submit questions to the two Hubble researchers via Twitter using #KavliAstro or email to [email protected].

Lead image caption: The Hubble eXtreme Deep Field (XDF). Credit: NASA, ESA, G. Illingworth, D. Magee, and P. Oesch (University of California, Santa Cruz), R. Bouwens (Leiden University), and the HUDF09 Team

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David Corby
October 4, 2012 4:12 AM

When I first saw the Hubble Deep field photo it made me change my entire career path. I thought to myself that I HAVE to be an astronomer.

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