The aging Hubble Space Telescope looks back to the depth of time billions of years before our Sun was even born.
At the limits of Hubble's visual abilities lies a cluster of spiral disk-shaped galaxies collectively called SPT0615. NASA published a picture of these ancient structures, one of which was born over 13 billion years ago, relatively soon after the Big Bang created the universe. The light has left these distant galaxies long ago, but Hubble can spy on this ancient luminosity.
"The light from distant objects reaches us so far away that it takes an incredibly long time to reach us, which means that it carries information about the past – information about the timing of the emission," she wrote NASA.
Looking at these galaxy clusters is an eerie look at events that took place long ago. But it's something astronomers at the Space Agency do every day.
"Just as ancient paintings can tell us about the period of history in which they were painted, ancient galaxies can tell us about the era of the universe in which they existed," NASA wrote.