[caption id="attachment_10662" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Credit: NASA, ESA, T. Roth, and STScI"][/caption] Sunday night saw the opening of From the Distant Past, a new exhibit at the Maryland Science Center that translates data from the Hubble Space Telescope into an intense green laser show. The light is projected onto the steel facade of the science center, plainly visible for Inner Harbor passersby to see. German artist Tim Otto Roth first debuted the work in Venice in 2010; this is its first appearance in the United States. When Hubble images distant objects, it separates light into its component parts using an instrument known as a spectrometer. The resulting data, called spectra, reveal details about objects such as temperature, atmospheric composition, and motion relative to Earth. This helps scientists with otherwise impossible tasks, like "seeing" a black hole at the center of a galaxy. Roth, in partnership with the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, converted the spectra plots into what look like lines on a heart monitor, projected to fill the entire span of the science center's harbor-facing wall. The exhibit will move to New York City's Hayden Planetarium in November. The show can be viewed each night between 7 and 11 p.m. through Oct. 18. Roth gives a guest talk at MICA's BBOX Sept. 29 at 7:30 p.m. and hosts a demonstration day at the Maryland Science Center Sept. 30.

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