Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

2018 March 5

The Hubble Ultra-Deep Field in Light and Sound
Image Credit: NASA, ESA, Hubble; Sonification: G. Salvesen (UCSB); Data: M. Rafelski et al.

Explanation: Have you heard about the Hubble Ultra-Deep Field? Either way, you've likely not heard about it like this -- please run your pointer over the featured image and listen! The Hubble Ultra-Deep Field (HUDF) was created in 2003-2004 with the Hubble Space Telescope staring for a long time toward near-empty space so that distant, faint galaxies would become visible. One of the most famous images in astronomy, the HUDF is featured here in a vibrant way -- with sonified distances. Pointing to a galaxy will play a note that indicates its approximate redshift. Because redshifts shift light toward the red end of the spectrum of light, they are depicted here by a shift of tone toward the low end of the spectrum of sound. The further the galaxy, the greater its cosmological redshift (even if it appears blue), and the lower the tone that will be played. The average galaxy in the HUDF is about 10.6 billion light years away and sounds like an F#. What's the most distant galaxy you can find? This Astronomy Picture of the Day (APOD) is based on an entry of new site called Astronomy Sound of the Month (AstroSoM).

Note: The sounds will only play on some browsers.
Tomorrow's picture: rainbow airglow

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Authors & editors: Robert Nemiroff (MTU) & Jerry Bonnell (UMCP)
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