NASA's Space Telescope Captures Amazing Shot Of Einstein Ring 12B Light Years Away

albert einstein
NASA's James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) continues to deliver amazing images from deep space. One of the latest is a colorized image of what is known as an Einstein Ring.

JWST began sending full resolution images from deep space back in early July. Since then, it has dazzled with images of a Cartwheel Galaxy, auroras of Jupiter, and more. Now, a post on Reddit is showcasing what is known as an Einstein Ring captured by Webb. The image, seen below, was detected by Webb's NIRCam detector and then colorized by Spaceguy44.

einstein ring
Image Credit: STScI/Spaceguy44

An Einstein Ring is when one galaxy is hiding behind another. The foreground galaxy acts as a huge gravitational lens, pulling the light from the background galaxy around it. The bright orb in the center of the image is the galaxy closer to the telescope.

The galaxy that makes up the outer ring captured in the image on Reddit, is known as SPT-S J041839-47518. The nearly perfect ring happens when the background galaxy, the foreground galaxy, and the observation device line up perfectly. Spaceguy44 notes that if not for "the light-bending properties of gravity," the background galaxy would remain unseen, leaving the foreground galaxy appearing alone as a blob in space.

Einstein rings explained by NASA from earlier Hubble sighting

The Einstein Ring captured by JWST is about 12 billion light-years from Earth. In order to colorize the far away galaxy, Spaceguy44 says a set of filters were utilized, which was also published in the original Reddit post. The filters used were: Red = F1000W; Green = F770W; Blue = F560W. The photos were aligned and colorized using astropy, with further processing performed using GIMP.

As JWST continues to capture more images, there will surely be many more astounding and awe-inspiring portraits of the galaxy to surface. Be sure to stay tuned to HotHardware, as we will continue to follow and report on all the amazing things Webb uncovers.