Two luminous eyes and a mouth stretched in a smile — such a telescope was found in distant space.
An unusual combination of cosmic structures found in the galaxy cluster SDSS J0952 + 3434. The “Smile of the Universe” image was captured using the WFC3 camera of the Hubble telescope.
There is nothing unusual in this combination. First, the galaxies that form the “face” are quite far from each other; the fact that they are so visible from Earth is just an accident. Secondly, the mouth-shaped galaxy also has its explanation. The light from it on its way to Earth passed by some massive object, as a result of which it was distorted. This phenomenon is called the “gravitational lensing effect”.
The Hubble telescope made this photo as part of a mission to study star formation in distant galaxies. The WFC3 camera, due to its high resolution and sensitivity in the infrared and ultraviolet ranges, is excellent for this job. It provides an unprecedentedly clear picture of the star-forming regions.