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In the standard **Big Bang** model, the universe expands according to the Hubble law, a simple relation expressed as v=H_{o}d, where v is the velocity of a galaxy at a distance d, and H_{o} is the Hubble constant. The Hubble constant characterizes both the scale and age of the universe. A measurement of the Hubble constant, together with the ages of the oldest objects in the universe, and the average density of the universe, are all separately required to describe the universe's evolution. Measuring an accurate value of H_{o} was one of the motivating reasons for building the Hubble Space Telescope (HST).

The measurement of most distances in astronomy cannot be done directly because the size scales are simply too big. In general, the basis for estimating distances in astronomy is the inverse square radiation law, which states that...

This section contains 575 words(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page) |