‘Hubble Madness’ Picks a Winning Image, and Deep Space Never Looked So Good

Carina Nebula Photograph by ESA/M. Livio/NASA

With all due respect to University of Connecticut basketball fans, the outcome of this competition is a bit more impressive. A Facebook contest dubbed “Hubble Madness” that pitted 32 images taken by the space telescope has produced a winner: the Mystic Mountain. That area in the Carina Nebula is a pillar of gas, dust, and stars that measures more than three light-years tall, roughly 7,500 light-years from earth.

NASA released the image in 2010 to celebrate the Hubble’s 20th anniversary, describing it as “reminiscent of a craggy fantasy mountaintop surrounded by wispy clouds.” Voting for the images occurred online over two weeks. The other cosmic players can be seen here.

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