Resolving Power of Hubble Space Telescope

The pictures described below show the core region of spiral galaxy M100, the brightest galaxy in the Virgo cluster of galaxies, some tens of millions of light-years from Earth.

The file, GROUND.JPG, contains an image made by a large ground-based telescope under the best possible atmospheric conditions.

The file, HUBBLE.JPG, contains the same image made by the Hubble Space Telescope in orbit around the earth above the atmosphere. This picture was taken December 31, 1993, shortly following the December 1993 telescope-servicing space-shuttle mission where corrective optics were installed to refocus light coming from the telescope's flawed primary mirror and restored telescope performance to the original specifications.