The famous Hubble Space Telescope has been snapping photos of distant stars, nebulae, supernovae, and planets for thirty years.
Orbiting above earth, the Hubble captures brilliant images because it doesn't peer through earth's atmosphere and its clouds, pollution, artificial light, and other distortions.
Every day (but not twice on Sundays) you can find new Hubble photos on the Astronomy Picture of the Day website.
Named for Edwin Hubble, a groundbreaking astronomer born in Missouri in 1890, the Hubble Telescope has captured over 1.5 billion images since its launch in 1990. Over 19,000 peer-reviewed papers have been published based on its discoveries and observations.
The Hubble can see in both visible and infrared wavelengths, allowing it to capture colorful images that normal telescopes could never reveal.
To get a sample of Hubble's amazing photos, check out this collection of 30 spectacular images taken over the last 30 years of Hubble's operation.
NASA recently went through the APOD archive and selected one picture for each day of the year.
Before you roll your eyes and say, "Someone has too much time on his hands" ... well, okay, someone has too much time.
Thanks to that person at NASA, you can now find the image of the cosmos that corresponds to your birthday, anniversary, or other special occasions.
You can let loved ones know which wispy cosmic gas formation represents their special day. Never say science isn't cool!
Just visit the NASA webpage, "What Did Hubble See on Your Birthday?"
Then enter your birthday and see what pops up.
For me, it was an image of the southern end of our universe, filled with dozens of galaxies. You can see it at the top of this article.
Feel free to share your birthday Hubble photos in the comments.