How Colored Hubble Telescope Images Are Made

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Some of the most stunning photographs ever taken are literally out of this world.

The photo above of Spiral Galaxy NGC 3982 is just one among many amazing photos taken by the infamous Hubble Telescope. As we marvel at this hypnotizing telescopic image, most of us might not even consider thinking about the complex process that goes behind producing these photographs.

Creating the final image above takes laborious hours of post-processing with software that will humble any photographer. According to the HubbleSite, the initial images are black and white, and color is actually applied in post using data from Hubble’s filter-covered sensors.

Perhaps its better to actually see the post-process in action via a time-lapse video, which compresses the entire procedure in a few minutes: