Hubble eXtreme Deep Field

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Hubble eXtreme Deep Field (2012) view of space in the constellation Fornax. Except for a few stars (which are bright and easily recognizable because only they have diffraction spikes), every speck of light is an entire galaxy – some of these are as old as 13.2 billion years[1] – the observable universe is estimated to contain 200 billion galaxies.

The Hubble eXtreme Deep Field (XDF) is an image of a small part of space in the center of the Hubble Ultra-Deep Field (HUDF) within the constellation Fornax, showing the deepest optical view in space.[1][2] While the HUDF is 2.4 arcminutes to an edge,[3] the XDF is 2.3 arcminutes by 2 arcminutes,[4] or approximately 80% the area of the HUDF.

Video (02:42) about how the Hubble eXtreme Deep Field image was made.

Released on September 25, 2012, the XDF image compiled 10 years of previous images and shows galaxies from 13.2 billion years ago. The exposure time was two million seconds, or approximately 23 days. The faintest galaxies are one ten-billionth the brightness of what the human eye can see. Many of the smaller galaxies are very young galaxies that eventually became major galaxies, like the Milky Way and other galaxies in our galactic neighborhood.[2]

The Hubble eXtreme Deep Field adds another 5,500 galaxies to those discovered in the Hubble Ultra-Deep Field.[5]


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