MACS 1149 (2015)

Update 2015 March 05: There is a cool story about a supernova Einstein cross in this image here: sci.esa.int/jump.cfm?oid=55529

I caught the first epoch release of this data today via a MAST tweet. This is all the WFC3 near-infrared data for MACS1149. Believe it or not, it is a color image with wideband filters ranging from 1050nm to 1600nm, but it’s not very colorful at this point. Later this summer, Hubble will turn once again to the cluster and image it in wavelengths ranging from 435nm to 814nm, which will result in a much more colorful image. Admittedly the image doesn’t take much processing work by me to do (it’s a beautiful High-Level Science Product / HLSP) but I love Frontier Fields so I can’t help digging into the data.

If you look very closely, you will notice that there are some colorful areas. This amateur (who may be wrong) understands greener spots to likely represent areas of starburst while redder ones may be exceptionally distant or dusty objects. This cluster is located ~5 billion light-years (z = 0.4) away but this field contains both objects much closer and much more distant. Gravitationally lensed galaxies can be seen throughout much of the image as thin streaks which appear to arc around the rounder, massive foreground galaxies.

This cluster was imaged for the Frontier Fields campaign.

Data can be retrieved from the following page:

Red: hlsp_frontier_hst_wfc3-30mas-bkgdcor_macs1149_f160w_v1.0-epoch1_drz
Orange: hlsp_frontier_hst_wfc3-30mas-bkgdcor_macs1149_f140w_v1.0-epoch1_drz
Green: hlsp_frontier_hst_wfc3-30mas-bkgdcor_macs1149_f125w_v1.0-epoch1_drz
Blue: hlsp_frontier_hst_wfc3-30mas-bkgdcor_macs1149_f105w_v1.0-epoch1_drz

North is NOT up. It is 10.2° counter-clockwise from up.

Copyright information:
Hubble data is public domain, but I put a lot of work into combining it into beautiful color images. The minimal credit line should read: NASA / ESA / J. Schmidt

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.