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hubble (Photo: Courtesy of NASA)

ROCHESTER RESCUE: NASA released an image showing a cluster of about 3,000 stars in a “stellar breeding ground” roughly 20,000 light-years from Earth this spring to mark the 25th anniversary of the Hubble Space Telescope’s launch. While the Hubble has been sending such iconic images for a quarter century, the telescope was initially in danger of becoming a billion-dollar failure when scientists in 1990, just weeks after the launch, discovered that one of its mirrors was flawed. Enter Duncan Moore, the Rudolf and Hilda Kingslake Professor of Optical Engineering, who chaired a national panel to figure out how to give the mirror the right prescription to correct what was, in effect, the telescope’s nearsightedness. Professor Jim Fienup, the Robert E. Hopkins Professor of Optics who was then at the University of Michigan, also served as an advisor to the national panel.