NASA's Hubble examines outstanding star cluster 160,000 light years from Earth

NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has captured a young star cluster that's 30 light years in diameter and about 160,000 light years from Earth.

NASA's Hubble examines outstanding star cluster 160,000 light years from Earth
Published   |   Updated Mon, Jan 23 2023 12:06 PM CST
1 minute & 11 seconds read time

NASA's Hubble Space Telescope is more than 30 years old but is still producing jaw-dropping images of the cosmos.

NASA's Hubble examines outstanding star cluster 160,000 light years from Earth 02

NASA has taken to its website to showcase an image of star cluster NGC 2002, located 160,00 light years from Earth, within the Large Magellanic Cloud, which is a satellite galaxy of our Milky Way. The space agency explains that NGC 2002 is approximately 30 light-years in diameter and is relatively young at just 18 million years old.

NGC 2002 contains about 1,100 stars, and according to NASA, the star cluster is an "open star cluster", which means that it has "low star density" and features an irregular shape as a result of the overall low gravitational attraction from the stars within the region. The opposite of an open star cluster is a globular cluster, which is when all of the stars are clumped tightly together, making it sometimes impossible for astronomers to observe individual stars.

That problem doesn't come up with open clusters, and as NASA points out, there are five red supergiant stars at the center of NGC 2002.

"Researchers used Hubble's high resolution and sensitivity at discerning individual stars to study NGC 2002. NGC 2002 contains about 1,100 stars. The more massive stars in the cluster tend to sink inwards towards the center, while the lighter stars move away from the center as the cluster evolves. Visible in the center of the cluster are five red supergiants, which are physically massive but cooler stars that are fusing helium after exhausting their hydrogen fuel," writes NASA.

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Jak joined the TweakTown team in 2017 and has since reviewed 100s of new tech products and kept us informed daily on the latest science and space news. Jak's love for science, space, and technology, and, more specifically, PC gaming, began at 10 years old. It was the day his dad showed him how to play Age of Empires on an old Compaq PC. Ever since that day, Jak fell in love with games and the progression of the technology industry in all its forms. Instead of typical FPS, Jak holds a very special spot in his heart for RTS games.

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