Eat It, "Star Wars": NASA Discovers A Galaxy Far, Far, Far Away

NASA's Hubble and Spitzer space telescopes have discovered the most distant galaxy in the universe. Named MACS0647-JD, it's been traveling through the void for 13.3 billion years and compared to our own Milky Way it's tiny, at 600 light years wide versus the 150,000 light years-wide galaxy we live in. And, just to put those 13.3 billion years in perspective, the furthest man-made object from earth is the Voyager 1 probe, which has been whizzing through space for 35 years but is a mere 17 light hours away as it gets ready to leave our solar system.

The sighting would not have been possible had NASA not used the magnification powers of a massive galaxy cluster, whose gravity increased the light from the galaxy so much that it was able to be spotted. Rest assured, however, that MACS0647-JD won't be the most distant galaxy to be discovered. For farther ones, we'll have to wait for more powerful telescopes. And, of course, the next round of Star Wars movies.

[Image from NASA]

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3 Comments

  • troyds

    or perhaps, it's not even there anymore...sucked up by the black hole at its center!

  • IdeaForecasting

    correction, it WAS '600 light years wide'  '13.3 billion years' ago! 

  • Blake Vonier

    if the galaxy is only 600 light yrs across can you imagine how big it is now ??!! remember: this is how big it was 13.3 billion years AGO....not now...