What if you could take a photo of a beach and view every grain of sand?
That’s what NASA says the Hubble Space Telescope has done, on a galactic scale.
NASA has released a composite image, the sharpest they’ve ever taken, of a section of the Andromeda Galaxy, 2.5 million light-years away. One hundred million stars, some of them in thousands of star clusters, are featured.
It’s the first time astronomers have been able to see individual stars inside a galaxy of this sort over an area this big.
The type of work involved in an image of this sort would drive photographers crazy. The image is a composite of 7,398 exposures taken over 411 individual locations and shows a 61,000-light-year-long stretch of the galaxy in its natural visible-light color.