In a delightful piece of news, NASA has recently released a set of incredible new images. They added them to the catalog of the deep-sky images which they named after Charles Messier, who was a French astronomer and who lived between 1730 and 1817.
Who Is Charles Messier?
Straying a little from the topic of the new images released by NASA, it’s worth our time to stop and learn more about Messier. His main interest was identifying new comets. However, considering the time he lived in, we need to acknowledge the fact that his work was limited by the small telescopes that were available then. Often times, he stumbled upon some faint and blurry objects that resembled comets. However, these did not move like comets, so he could not give them this classification.
His solution to this frustration was to start writing down the mysterious objects. Thus, he created a journal that helped him set aside the comets he was looking for. All in all, he wrote down 110 objects, visible only from the Northern Hemisphere.
Back to the Pictures
Now we know that the objects he classified there are nebulae, galaxies found far away, and star clusters found far away from the Milky Way. Accidentally or not, these include some of the most impressive and unforgettable sights in the northern sky. Who could not be touched by the splendor of the Pillars of Creation, Whirlpool Galaxy, or Crab Nebula?
You can admire all of them on the official website. NASA published recently 12 new images with such sights from the outer space. Needless to say, many people were impressed by the beauty in them. This was possible thanks to the Hubble Space Telescope, which was launched in 1990. With its help, astronomers managed to have images of 93 of 110 items that Messier had previously written down.