HST to HST10X: A second revolution in space science

Holland C. Ford, J. R.P. Angel, C. J. Burrows, J. A. Morse, J. T. Trauger, D. A. Dufford

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


The Hubble Space Telescope is arguably one of the most important and successful scientific endeavors undertaken in the twentieth century. Hubble, a modest-sized 2.4-m telescope, outperforms much larger terrestrial telescopes because it is diffraction limited, and because the sky seen from orbit is darker than the terrestrial night sky. If we increase the diameter of Hubble to 8.4-m, a diameter comparable to Keck and the VLT, the increase in capability will be comparable to that which, was first achieved by Hubble's launch and subsequent repair. HST10X will allow a fast track solution of outstanding problems in astronomy. Perhaps foremost among these is the detection of earth-like planets orbiting nearby stars. HST10X can detect earth-like planets around stars at distances up to 10 parsecs. Furthermore, HST10X will enable spectroscopic examination of earth-like planets to search for atmospheric oxygen, a certain sign of life. A one-orbit F814W HST10X exposure will be deeper than the HDF and have 14 times more spatial information per galaxy. HST10X will allow us to measure the spectra and spectra energy distributions of high redshift galaxies that cannot be reached with the Keck and VLT telescopes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)595-604
Number of pages10
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 2000
EventUV, Optical, and IR Space Telescopes and Instruments - Munich, Ger
Duration: Mar 29 2000Mar 31 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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