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A chronology of the Hubble Space Telescope Illustrates the mission's history from conception through its 25 years of ground-breaking observations and discoveries.
Significant Image
Hubble reveals a "backwards" spiral galaxy
Hubble reveals a "backwards" spiral galaxy
Release date: February 7, 2002

Most spiral galaxies have arms of gas and stars that trail behind as they turn. But this galaxy, called NGC 4622, appears to have two "leading" outer arms...

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HubbleSite press release
Historical Context
Mars Odyssey space probe begins mapping the Red Planet
Mars Odyssey space probe begins mapping the Red Planet
February 19, 2002

2001 Mars Odyssey is part of NASA's Mars Exploration Program, a long-term effort of robotic exploration of the Red Planet. The mission will globally map the...

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NASA Mission: Mars Odyssey
Mission Event
Servicing Mission 3B (STS-109)
Servicing Mission 3B (STS-109)
March 1-12, 2002

Astronauts install a powerful new instrument on Hubble, the Advanced Camera for Surveys, and a cryocooler designed to extend the life of Hubble’s infrared...

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NASA Space Shuttle Columbia Mission STS-109: Hubble Servicing Mission 3B
Science Discovery
Kuiper belt object larger than Pluto is discovered
Kuiper belt object larger than Pluto is discovered
Release date: April 17, 2002

Hubble finds a body in the Kuiper belt that is larger than Pluto, triggering a debate over Pluto’s planetary status.

OBJECT: 1998 WW31

CREDIT: NASA and...

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HubbleSite press release
Milestone Release
Hubble's new camera delivers breathtaking views of the universe
Hubble's new camera delivers breathtaking views of the universe
Release date: April 30, 2002

Hubble's newly installed Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) can cover twice the area in less time than its "workhorse" camera, the Wide Field and Planetary...

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HubbleSite press release
Significant Image
The Tadpole Galaxy: Distorted victim of cosmic collision
The Tadpole Galaxy: Distorted victim of cosmic collision
Release date: April 30, 2002

This spiral galaxy is unlike the textbook images of stately galaxies. Its distorted shape was caused by a small interloper, a very blue, compact galaxy...

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HubbleSite press release
Historical Context
NASA announces contract for Next Generation Space Telescope
NASA announces contract for Next Generation Space Telescope
September 11, 2002

Based on two “Phase A” studies, NASA selects the design of TRW/Ball Aerospace to build the Next Generation Space Telescope (NGST). In “Phase B” the detailed...

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HubbleSite press release
Science Discovery
Hubble makes a precise measure of an extrasolar world's true mass
Hubble makes a precise measure of an extrasolar world's true mass
Release date: December 3, 2002

An international team of astronomers used the Hubble Space Telescope to help make a precise measurement of the mass of a planet outside our solar system. The...

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HubbleSite press release
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