NASA's Hubble Space Telescope reached a major milestone on Jan. 1, 2022: one billion seconds (31.7 years). The famous observatory was launched on April 24, 1990, aboard the space shuttle Discovery, and deployed into orbit the next day, beginning its mission to explore the vast universe. The Hubble Space Telescope, a joint mission of NASA and the European Space Agency, has made more than 1.5 million observations. Thousands of scientific papers have been based on its discoveries, which include helping determine the universe's age (13.8 billion years, or three times the age of Earth) and the rate of its expansion; discovering Pluto’s fifth moon; finding supermassive black holes at the center of most galaxies; and helping astronomers map dark matter in the universe.

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