This drawing illustrates the Hubble Space Telescope's (HST's), Faint Object Spectrograph (FOS). The HST's two spectrographs, the Goddard High-Resolution Spectrograph and the FOS, can detect a broader range of wavelengths than is possible from the Earth because there is no atmosphere to absorb certain wavelengths. Scientists can determine the chemical composition, temperature, pressure, and turbulence of the stellar atmosphere producing the light, all from spectral data. The FOC can detect detail in very faint objects, such as those at great distances, and light ranging from ultraviolet to red spectral bands. Both spectrographs operate in essentially the same way. The incoming light passes through a small entrance aperture, then passes through filters and diffraction gratings, that work like prisms. The filter or grating used determines what range of wavelength will be examined and in what detail. Then the spectrograph detectors record the strength of each wavelength band and sends it back to Earth. The purpose of the HST, the most complex and sensitive optical telescope ever made, is to study the cosmos from a low-Earth orbit. By placing the telescope in space, astronomers are able to collect data that is free of the Earth's atmosphere. The HST views galaxies, stars, planets, comets, possibly other solar systems, and even unusual phenomena such as quasars, with 10 times the clarity of ground-based telescopes. The HST was deployed from the Space Shuttle Discovery (STS-31 mission) into Earth orbit in April 1990. The Marshall Space Flight Center had responsibility for design, development, and construction of the HST. The Perkin-Elmer Corporation, in Danbury, Cornecticut, developed the optical system and guidance sensors.