The James Webb Telescope: First Image

One portion of our universe 13.7 billion years ago (Credits: NASA, ESA, CSA, and STScI)

Those disks you see are galaxies, each with 100-400 billion stars. The arcs of light are distended galaxies, the result of gravitational lensing caused by the bending of space/time and light by both visible and dark matter (explained by general relativity). Most of these stars (except the smallest) have likely burnt out or went supernova eons ago. Stars are born with the compression of hydrogen which gravity compresses until the point of fusion. From there on, heavier elements are created. The larger the star, the heavier the elements it can produce–up to iron. The heavier elements cast from supernovas are what led to the matter that pervades the universe. Our planet and our bodies are all descendants of giant stars.


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