NASA Discovers “Hand of God” Via TelescopeBy: Chad Sweely - January 10, 2014
Space — the final frontier. In space, there are lots of phenomena and many things that not even the best-educated scientists can even answer nor identify; however, space does bring us a lot of interesting images from the various telescopes that we humans have placed up there. An image that has been recently captured by one of NASA’s telescopes has definitely received a lot of attention these past few days — an image depicting the “Hand of God.”
According to Yahoo News, the image (captured by NASA’s Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR) of a hand-like appearance was created by an exploding star that ejected a large amount of material in a cloud formation. Yahoo elaborates on the “Hand of God” in a more scientific explanation provided below.
“The new image depicts a pulsar wind nebula, produced by the dense remnant of a star that exploded in a supernova. What’s left behind is a pulsar, called PSR B1509-58 (B1509 for short), which spins around 7 times per second blowing a wind of particles into material ejected during the star’s death throes.”
The various scientists who are currently studying the pulsar wind nebula are unsure if the ejected material forms the shape of a hand, or if the interaction with the particles of the pulsar are just making it appear that way to the eye. Hongjun An, of McGill University in Montreal, stated “We don’t know if the hand shape is an optical illusion. With NuSTAR, the hand looks more like a fist, which is giving us some clues.”
The “Hand of God” image is an example of pareidolia, which LiveScience.com describes as “the psychological phenomenon that causes some people to see or hear a vague or random image or sound as something significant.” Another form of pareidolia is when a person sees various images and objects in the shapes of clouds.
Various twitter users have reacted to the “Hand of God” image captured by NASA, and I have provided some of their reactions to this phenomenon below.
Image via YouTube (0:06)