This site is intended as a virtual exhibition for images of space that professional astronomers have used in understanding the heavens.

The astronomical images viewed here are mostly taken in the 1990's using more than ten different ground and space-based telescopes such as the Hubble Space telescope, the Very Large Array of radio telescopes and the Anglo-Australian optical telescope. The arrangement of astronomical images begins with nearby objects in the solar system and the Milky Way Galaxy followed by deep space objects lying beyond our Galaxy. Just as one can view a tree versus the forest, this exhibit presents details of nearby objects while displaying a holistic view of distant phenomena. The distance to each object is given in terms of light travel time. For example, it takes light approximately one second to reach us from the Moon, eight minutes from the Sun and four light years from the nearest known star.

The scientific theme in this project is to compare the visible and invisible images observed with the optical and radio telescopes, respectively. The visible and invisible universe are partners providing information complementary to each other. The scientific interest has also been in the aesthetic properties as well as new details revealed through a black and white format. An additional point of interest in this gallery is the variety of symmetric shapes observed throughout the universe. The pictures represent the true structure of the astronomical objects with the exception of the photograph of one galaxy cluster. The shape of this cluster suffers from the distortion of light by the strong gravitational field of the galaxies in the cluster.

Farhad Zadeh