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In the center in the image is a shiny, near-perfect ring with what appear to be four bright spots threaded along it, looping around two more points with a golden glow.
This is called an Einstein ring, and those bright dots are not six galaxies, but three: the two in the middle of the ring, and one quasar behind it, its light distorted and magnified as it passes through the gravitational field of the two foreground galaxies.
Because the mass of the two foreground galaxies is so high, this causes a gravitational curvature of space-time around the pair. Any light that then travels through this space-time follows this curvature and enters our telescopes smeared and distorted – but also magnified.
Think of deflection angles. The further away something is when you deflect it, the larger the deflection distance for the same deflection angle.
originally posted by: Silcone Synapse
Ok the mass is bending the light,I can just about get that idea-But then they said the light has been "bent" by upto/over one hundred light years away from its actual postion(depending on the size/mass of the foreround galaxy).
I can't really picture that-its too mind boggling.