In an image posted to NASA’s website, two yellow orbs could be seen above an arc of light, painting a smiley face in the middle of a sea of stars.
The arc of light, according to NASA, is a galaxy whose shape has been distorted and stretched as a result of passing a massive gravity source.
“The lower, arc-shaped galaxy has the characteristic shape of a galaxy that has been gravitationally lensed – its light has passed near a massive object en route to us, causing it to become distorted and stretched out of shape,” said NASA.
The smiling face is located in the galaxy cluster SDSS J0952+3434, and was shot with the Hubble Space Telescope’s Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3).
The powerful telescope captured this image in an effort to understand how new stars spring to life throughout the cosmos.
WFC3 is able to view distant galaxies at an unprecedented resolution — high enough to locate and study regions of star formation within them.
Hubble Space Telescope returned to normal operations on Oct. 26 after successfully recovering a backup gyroscope that had replaced a failed one three weeks earlier.
Originally required to last 15 years, Hubble has now been at the forefront of scientific discovery for more than 28 years. The team expects the telescope will continue to yield amazing discoveries well into the next decade.