Looking Upward From A Balloon

The Antennae Galaxies are a pair of large galaxies colliding about 60 million light-years away. This picuare of them  is one of the first research images from the Super Pressure Balloon Imaging Telescope (SuperBIT) launched on a scientific super pressure balloon April 16, 2023 (local time New Zealand). This image was taken while the balloon floated in a near-space environment 33 km (108,000 ft) above Earth’s surface. The SuperBIT telescope operates in the visible-to-near-ultraviolet light spectrum, which is within the Hubble Space Telescope’s capabilities, but SuperBIT has a wider field of view. Its main purpose is to map dark matter around galaxy clusters by measuring the way these massive objects warp the space around them.

Image Credit: NASA / Durham University

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