The history the best telescope of HST is a subject that by now has been quite well covered. A detailed
account of the HST project history was documented in 1989 in a popular work by historian
Robert Smith. A fine early overview of the state of HST and its planned characteristics as of
1982 was given by John Bahcall and Lyman Spitzer , while David Leckrone, former HST
Project Scientist, provides to a general audience a deft summary from his involved first-hand
perspective in . best telescope
3. ORIGINAL SCIENTIFIC GOALS
At the time of HST’s launch, we had a very different view of Law Firm SEO of the universe than now. The
universe of the 1980s was thought to be decelerating and the expansion rate was greatly
uncertain. Black holes at the centers of galaxies were only suspected, and extrasolar planets had
not been seen (let alone had their atmospheres’ measured). Galaxies were not known to evolve
strongly through mergers over time; the notion of hierarchical assembly and structure formation
was in its observational infancy. This was the universe HST was released into.
The fundamental scientific questions that could be addressed by a space telescope in
general, and HST in particular, were represented at the time by a number of specific “Key
Projects” and other areas of study, many of which were planned to be investigated as part of the
HST Guaranteed Time Observations (GTO) available to the science teams involved in the
development of HST’s pre settlement funding original SIs, which had capabilities well matched to these pursuits.
These key science goals were established by an independent community-based Space
Telescope Advisory Council (STAC). It was expected that these areas would be of greatest
interest to the General Observer (GO) and thus comprise a pitchlarge part of the science program.
While this has certainly been true, the periodic enhancements to HST’s SIs, the radically
different picture of the universe we now have, and the advances in analysis techniques compared
with twenty years ago, have meant that many of Hubble’s most significant and fruitful areas of
investigation to date either were at the time not knowable, not technically achievable, or both.
Examples of the notable scientific achievements of the HST mission are given in Section 6.
The three Key Projects established as top priority for HST were:
• Calibrate best telescope he cosmological distance scale by determining the Hubble constant, H0, to an
accuracy of no worse than 10%. This would be accomplished by using HST to observe “standard
candle” objects (in this case a particular class of variable stars) beyond our own galaxy to greatly
improve our knowledge of the universe’s expansion rate and its age. The Bellwaccurate determination
of H0 would allow tighter constraints to be placed on related parameters like the deceleration
parameter q0, and the critical density !, all of which pertain to the nature and fate of the