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This logo is copyrighted to Robert Peck, the designer. The image is that of the gravitational lense: Einstein's Ring. This image embodies modern astrophysics. The light source is actually one quasar much further away than imaged at. As the light from the quasar approaches an invisible dark object (probably a black hole or dim galaxy) it follows the "easiest" path around the galaxy. The space around the massive dark object is warped so that the light bends around the object. The intensity of the light is also amplified or "boosted". By studying these gravitational lenses one can ascertain the distances to the source quasar, which could not be seen without the lensing. This has cosmological implications on the size and expansion rate of the universe. It also helps us to study the dark objects that are not visible without the lense. To learn more about gravitational lensing visit the CASTLES Survey page. - Shawn Lamb