On January 1, 2022, NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope officially passed the one-billion second mark.
Hubble was deployed from the Space Shuttle Discovery’s cargo bay on April 25, 1990, making it one-billion seconds (over 31 years) since Hubble began operating. For more than three decades, Hubble has provided us with groundbreaking scientific discoveries and iconic images of space.
Hubble’s first one-billion seconds included five astronaut servicing missions to replace and repair components of the telescope, and more than 1.5 million scientific observations and counting! We can only imagine what discoveries the next one-billion seconds will bring as new telescopes like the recently launched James Webb Space Telescope and the future Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope build upon Hubble’s discoveries and work together with Hubble to expand our understanding of the universe.
The Hubble Space Telescope has transformed our understanding of the universe, its view from orbit unleashing a flood of cosmic discoveries that have changed astronomy forever. From its discovery of dark energy to its quest to determine the age of the universe, Hubble has helped answer some of the most compelling astronomical questions of our time and revealed even stranger phenomena, opening our eyes to the grandeur and mystery of space.