WASHINGTON (AP) — The refurbished Hubble Space Telescope has spotted the oldest galaxies yet, scientists reported Tuesday.
A newly installed wide field camera on Hubble this summer captured several thousand never-before-seen galaxies, which were formed 600 million years after the Big Bang. Scientists believe that massive explosion led to the creation of the universe.
The galaxies are about 13 billion light years away. Each light year is about 6 trillion miles.
The image was taken in a region of space that Hubble scanned in 2004. Since the new camera has a near-infared channel, it allows the orbiting telescope to peer deeper into the universe and spot distant galaxies.
The camera was installed in May by NASA spacewalking astronauts as part of a mission to upgrade and repair the aging telescope.
Hubble is a collaboration between NASA and the European Space Agency.