The Making of Pillars of Creation

3D visualisation video shows the making of Pillars of Creation, one of the most iconic images in our universe. No, of course it wasn’t a simple photo. Via Gizmodo:

Three pillars of gas and dust sit among stars like towers of billowing smoke. It would take several years for light to cross from the top to the bottom of these dusty columns. This striking image taken by the Hubble Space Telescope remains, to this day, one of the most well-known astronomical images ever taken.

But if you were to peer at the Pillars of Creation, part of the Eagle Nebula, through your own telescope, you wouldn’t see the same thing. The images you typically see of outer space are colorized and processed in order to bring out the detail and highlight the most relevant parts for scientific study. The popularity of the Pillars of Creation may have forever changed how astronomers present images of space to the public.

“Because of the public desire to see pictures like this, an awful lot of people started rendering their press releases using these kinds of images,” Paul Scowen, Arizona State University astronomer and one of the image’s creators, told Gizmodo. “It had an impact on the way the data of Hubble was seen and digested by the public as a general result.”

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