MARK GARLICK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MARK GARLICK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
A conceptual illustration of the visible Universe. At the centre is the Solar System. As we move farther away, we encounter first stars, then galaxies. The farther into space we look, the deeper back in time we see, because of the finite speed of light. The furthest we can see is the point at which the universe became transparent - when the density of matter permitted photons to travel through the universe without absorption. This is depicted at the edge of the circle.
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