Space & Astronomy
About space exploration, astronomy and the universe
The 51st entry in Charles Messier's famous catalog: a large galaxy with a well defined spiral structure (NGC 5194). Over 60,000 light-years across, M51's spiral arms and dust lanes clearly sweep in front of its companion galaxy, NGC 5195 ... The pair are about 31 million light-years distant. | Photo: NASA, Hubble Heritage Team, (STScI/AURA), ESA, S. Beckwith (STScI). Additional Processing: Robert Gendler | License: www.dvidshub.net/...
Photograph courtesy NASA/Lunar Orbiter 1 This photo reveals the first view of Earth from the moon, taken by Lunar Orbiter 1 on August 23, 1966. Shot from a distance of about 236,000 miles (380,000 kilometers), this image shows half of Earth, from Istanbul to Cape Town and areas east, shrouded in night.
Cassini drifted into Saturn's shadow for about 12 hours in 2006 and looked back toward the eclipsed Sun. Far in the distance, at the left, just above the bright main rings, is the almost ignorable pale blue dot of Earth. Picture: JPL/Nasa
The Sombrero Galaxy (also known as M104 or NGC 4594) is an unbarred spiral galaxy in the constellation Virgo located 28 million light years from Earth. It has a bright nucleus, an unusually large central bulge, and a prominent dust lane in its inclined disk. The dark dust lane and the bulge give this galaxy the appearance of a sombrero.
Mars rover Curiosity has cut a wheel scuff mark into a wind-formed ripple at the Rocknest site. Photograph: NASA/AFP/Getty Images
Moody, Glowing Saturn Auroras -- This false-color composite image, constructed from data obtained by NASA's Cassini spacecraft, shows the glow of auroras streaking out about 1,000 km (600 miles) from the cloud tops of Saturn's south polar region. It is among the first images released from a study that identifies images showing auroral emissions out of the entire catalogue of images taken by Cassini's visual and infrared mapping spectrometer.