Tonight's Sky
Sun
Sun
Moon
Moon
Mercury
Mercury
Venus
Venus
Mars
Mars
Jupiter
Jupiter
Saturn
Saturn

Tonight's Sky — Change location

OR

Searching...

Tonight's Sky — Select location

Tonight's Sky — Enter coordinates

° '
° '

If we know the path that both the Milky Way and our solar system have been on, could Hubble not look back on that path and see both at some point in the past?

Jim Brady, Winchester, Massachusetts

RELATED TOPICS: HUBBLE TELESCOPE
Astronomers' Milky Way model
We say that a telescope looks back in time when it looks into space, but that is not exactly true. Light takes some amount of time to travel from one object to another; it is not instantaneous. Light covers 186,282 miles (299,792 kilometers) each second.

Astronomy magazine subscribers can read the full answer for free. Just make sure you're registered with the website.

Already a subscriber? Register now!

Registration is FREE and takes only a few seconds to complete. If you are already registered on Astronomy.com, please log in below.
ADVERTISEMENT

FREE EMAIL NEWSLETTER

Receive news, sky-event information, observing tips, and more from Astronomy's weekly email newsletter.

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
asy_gravitational_eguide

Click here to receive a FREE e-Guide exclusively from Astronomy magazine.

Find us on Facebook