04/24/2013 02:23 EDT | Updated 04/24/2013 02:31 EDT

Happy Birthday Hubble Space Telescope: Satellite Celebrates 23rd Anniversary


Happy 23rd birthday Hubble Space Telescope.

On April 24, 1990, NASA launched the pioneering satellite that would deliver some of the best images of the cosmos to date.

Free from the distorting effects of Earth's atmosphere, Hubble was able to see objects clearer and further away.

Over the last two decades, Hubble has been instrumental in helping pinpoint the age of the universe to between 13 and 14 billion years old. Hubblesite, an online resource on the telescope, also points out that more than 10,000 scientific articles have been published using data and observations from Hubble. It has also been key to discovering planets outside our solar system.

The $2.5-billion (US) satellite did require some significant repairs, including a mission in 1993 on which astronauts fixed an imperfection in the telescope's lens. NASA's is currently building Hubble's successor the Webb Space Telescope.

Most recently, Hubble shot a stunning photo of the ISON comet and gave us a detailed look at the iconic Horsehead Nebula.

The Hubble Space Telescope was named after U.S. astronomer Edwin Hubble, who first posited that the universe was expanding.

Check out some of the best photos from Hubble Space Telescope

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