No announcement yet.

Pictures from the Hubble Space Telescope

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Pictures from the Hubble Space Telescope

    There was a story in my local paper today( picked up from the LA Times) reporting that all of those beautiful technicolor images of the universe are actually black and white photos colorized and "reconstructed" for public consumption. I never remember coming across that information before.

    I guess that I'm a product of too many Star Wars type movies but I honestly never questioned the integrity of the photographs which I really loved. If I thought about it, it would have been obvious that they would not have looked like that( the problem with their being color for one thing).

    Apparently the Hubble sends its snapshots back to earth in grainy black and white and the artists take it from there. No mention of the digital imaging program they use by the way to produce the enhanced photos.

    Oh well, who can you trust anymore.


  • #2
    It's my understanding that most Hubble photos are "false color" not for the purpose of making pretty pictures, but for very good scientific reasons. The different colors often represent wavelengths that are beyond our visible range (x-ray, ultraviolet, etc...) and the false coloring helps scientists to identify various elements present in stars, nebulas, etc... In fact, most astronomy is done at wavelengths beyond our visible range....that's where all the interesting stuff is! So, any visual representation of that data is going to be inherently innaccurate from what our eyes would see.


    • #3
      You forgot the doppler effect
      Depending upon how fast a star is moving away, the frequency of the em waves change(reduce). So what is "the real frequency" even if they were to emit only visible light?


      • #4
        Don't get me wrong, I think that the artistry and presentation of the images are truly stunning and I will still keep my poster of it up. I am just disappointed with myself that I thought that was how outer space really looked. It was very naive of me but it's been many years since I've had physics and I didn't think it through.

        When I pick up a magazine cover I know that there was manipulation going on and I accept it but when I see a news photograph in a reputable newspaper I expect that it has not been digitally altered. I suppose that same expectation extended to the pictures from the Hubble.

        How about those images from Mars anyone?


        Related Topics


        • BigAl
          Tent on Malolotja revisited
          by BigAl
          I recently asked my students, as part of an Internet awareness assignment, "What is the significance of the 'Tent on Malolotja'?". As this image was discussed in an earlier thread, I thought I'd share what the students found.

          What I was actually after was:
          • what had been done?
          • you
          04-08-2002, 05:42 AM
        • Ed_L
          The pictures from Iraq
          by Ed_L
          It's hard to find words to describe how the American people feel about the alarming pictures coming out of Iraq today. I'm absolutely positive that almost 100% of U. S.citizens are saddened by the actions of a few of us. It won't mean much, but I'd like to apologize to the citizens of the world for...
          04-30-2004, 10:31 PM
        • Doug Nelson
          by Doug Nelson
          I find myself in a reflective mood this morning (you have been warned).

          As I try to do as often as possible, I was out on the web to explore what creative folk are putting in their galleries (using "gallery" in the loosest sense of the word, since it's not limited to just photos...
          03-05-2007, 09:52 AM
        • TwinbNJ
          NCPPA Strips Photog’s POY Awards
          by TwinbNJ
          I have signed up for several news groups for the events section of this site --- but this head line caught my eye when I went through the E-mails tonight. I read the article with mixed feelings. We are in a very competative age for media "who has the best picture" and with the tools that...
          08-26-2003, 09:53 PM
        • jeaniesa
          Hey Arura! (about travel in Viet Nam)
          by jeaniesa
          Hi Arura,

          I thought I'd move the discussion of VN travel over here so that we don't clutter up the Critiques thread with off-topic discussion. Anything goes over here in Salon though!

          Wow - 5 weeks to see VN! That sounds about right. I brought my mother with me in...
          06-14-2002, 01:28 PM