After NASA and ESA opened the Hubble Space Telescope archives for amateur astronomers, one of them managed to find a stunning "photo bomb" of an asteroid in front of the mesmerizing Crab Nebula.
The US and European space agencies launched the Citizen Science Hubble Asteroid Hunter project in June, but were not prepared for the overwhelming enthusiasm of more than 1,900 volunteers who managed to achieve 300,000 classifications of nearly 11,000 images in just 1.5 Completing months Even the most optimistic expectations of the project.
In particular, an astronomy enthusiast, Melina Thévenot from Germany, discovered a fascinating picture when searching through the archives. Thévenot used various versions of a 2005 Crab Nebula image and combined blue, green, and red filter views. He found that the track of the asteroid 2001
The Crab Nebula, also known as Messier 1 or M1, is the expanding remnant of a supernova explosion first observed by astronomers in 1054. The fast-spinning neutron star remaining after the explosion is also visible in the center of the image (it is the leftmost star in the binary pair). ,
Now that the project is complete, professional astronomers can begin to draw the asteroids' orbits and future trajectories with greater accuracy than ever before. This research, in turn, will affect our planetary defense models and may someday help prevent potential impacts.
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