Four supernova images in an Einstein cross
This image shows four different images of the same supernova whose light has been distorted and magnified by the huge galaxy cluster MACS J1149+2223 in front of it.
The huge mass of the cluster and one of the galaxies within it is bending the light from a supernova behind them and creating four separate images of the supernova. The light has been magnified and distorted due to gravitational lensing and as a result the images are arranged around the elliptical galaxy in a formation known as an Einstein cross.
Credit: NASA, ESA, S. Rodney (John Hopkins University, USA) and the FrontierSN team; T. Treu (University of California Los Angeles, USA), P. Kelly (University of California Berkeley, USA) and the GLASS team; J. Lotz (STScI) and the Frontier Fields team; M. Postman (STScI) and the CLASH team; and Z. Levay (STScI)