Friday, March 27, 2015: A photograph shows the Soyuz TMA-16M spacecraft as seen through metal beams after the vehicle rolled out by train to the launch…Read More »
pad at the Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan, on March 25, 2015. The rocket will carry NASA astronaut Scott Kelly with Russian cosmonauts Mikhail Kornienko and Gennady Padalka of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) to the International Space Station on the scheduled launch date of March 28, 2015. Kelly and Kornienko will return to Earth in March 2016 after a full one-year stay in space. [Watch the launch live.]
Thursday, March 26, 2015: Cassini spacecraft caught Saturn's moons (R to L) Pandora, Prometheus, and Pan floating among the planet’s rings. Some moons…Read More »
can shape nearby rings with gravity, keeping the rings’ edges from spreading, "shepherding" them, so to speak. Pan shapes and controls the locations of the inner and outer edges of the Encke gap. However, researchers have yet to determine what effect Prometheus and Pandora have on the F ring's configuration. Cassini spacecraft obtained the image in visible light on Jan. 2, 2015. Image released March 23, 2015.
Wednesday, March 25, 2015: Astrophotographer Daniel Mackintosh sent in a photo of the March 20, 2015, solar eclipse taken over Aberdeen Beach, Scotland.…Read More »
He writes in an email message to Space.com: "I had such a great time down at Aberdeen Beach watching the eclipse and the excitement was only amplified when I luckily caught this snap of a plane passing by the eclipse." The Grampian Eye ferris wheel appears at left. [See more photos of the eclipse.]
Monday, March 23, 2015: The Milky Way shines above the dome of the Danish 1.54-meter telescope that has operated at La Silla Observatory in Chile since 1979.
— Tom Chao
6 of 21
Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Carnegie Institution of Washington
Friday, March 20, 2015: The north polar region of Mercury appears in colors corresponding to the maximum biannual surface temperature, ranging from >400…Read More »
K (red) to 50 K (purple). Being the closest planet to the sun, Mercury can attain high temperatures in its sunlit areas, shown by the red color of the majority of the image. However, some craters near Mercury's poles possess regions permanently shadowed, and the maximum temperatures in these areas can dip down very low.
Thursday, March 19, 2015: Astrophotographer Mia Stålnacke sent in a photo of an auroral display over of Kiruna, Sweden, taken on March 17, 2015. She writes…Read More »
in an email message to Space.com: "Last night was, as you know, spectacular! … I've been shooting the aurora for years now but last night topped everything else! For the first time ever I managed to catch the blue aurora!" Ionized nitrogen molecules in the atmosphere emit the blue color when regaining an electron after ionization.
Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA; Acknowledgement: Alessandra Aloisi (STScI) and Nick Rose
Wednesday, March 18, 2015: This NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image shows blue compact dwarf galaxy PGC 51017, also known as SBSG 1415+437. Astronomers…Read More »
had thought that SBS 1415+437 represented a very young galaxy undergoing its first burst of star formation, but more recent studies have suggested that the galaxy has passed that stage, containing stars over 1.3 billion years old. In fact, it seems like our nearby region of the universe may not contain any galaxies currently undergoing their first burst of star formation.
Tuesday, March 17, 2015: The four Auxiliary Telescopes of the Very Large Telescope Array stand against an star-filled night sky on Cerro Paranal in Chile,…Read More »
at ESO’s Paranal Observatory. The Auxiliary Telescopes each measure 6 feet (1.8 meters) in diameter. Above the site, the Small and Large Magellanic Clouds hang prominently, visible only in the southern sky. These two irregular dwarf galaxies make up part of the Local Group, being companion galaxies to our own galaxy, the Milky Way. John Colosimo took the photo and submitted it to the Your ESO Pictures Flickr group. Image released March 16, 2015.
Monday, March 16, 2015: Astrophotographer Connor Hicks submitted a photo of star trails over the
The Royal Victoria Hospital, or Netley Hospital, in Portsmouth on the southern coast of England. The hospital, which began construction in 1856 with a cornerstone laying by Queen Victoria, once boasted the longest building in the world (at the time). Today only the chapel, seen here, remains. Image taken Feb. 2, 2015.
Friday, March 13, 2015: An Atlas V rocket carrying NASA’s Magnetospheric Multiscale (MMS) spacecraft launches from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station…Read More »
in Florida, on March 12, 2015. NASA’s MMS mission, which consists of four identical spacecraft flying in formation, will study how magnetic fields around Earth connect and disconnect. [Read full story.]
Thursday, March 12, 2015: Astrophotographer Adam Woodworth captured a star-filled night sky over a lighthouse in Maine. He writes in an email message to…Read More »
Space.com: "I'd been hoping to get a Milky Way shot at Portland Head Light for a couple of years now, but I never got out there early enough in the year to capture the Galactic Center before it was too far south for this location. I didn't have a pano[rama] in mind for this originally but as I was planning the shoot I thought I'd give it a try. I haven't tried Milky Way panoramas much, and this is is my first successful one.
"You'll notice that the photo goes from dark on the right to bright on the left. The shots that make up this panorama were taken at the start of astronomical twilight, which means that the sun was approaching the horizon (but still about 90 minutes away from sunrise) and close enough that its scattered light brightens the horizon. The glow starts around the area where the sun will rise, which is why the middle-left side of the image is brighter, and then on the far left it goes into light pollution from the Portland area and gets very bright. But also, the shots took about 15 minutes, so within that time the earlier shots (I started from the right) would be darker than the later shots as the sun was getting closer to the horizon." Image submitted March 2, 2015.
Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Carnegie Institution of Washington
Wednesday, March 11, 2015: This view of Mercury shows two craters. The one on the left possesses a sharp rim for about one-quarter of its circumference…Read More »
(at the right side). The other three quarters are marked by a broad terrace, created by slumping and inward movement of material, the cause of which is unknown. Possible factors involved in the slumping include the strength of the target material, the angle of the impact, topography, buried topography or structures, and local or regional tectonics. Image acquired on Jan. 19, 2014 and released March 9, 2015.
Tuesday, March 10, 2015: UGC 8201 is classed as a dwarf irregular galaxy due to its small size and chaotic structure. It lies roughly 15 million light-years…Read More »
away in the constellation of Draco (the Dragon). UGC 8201 recently finished a lengthy period of star formation, having significant impact on the whole galaxy. This activity went on for several hundred million years, producing a high number of newborn bright stars. These stars make up the dominating light source within the galaxy. This process also altered the distribution and amount of dust and gas between the galaxy’s stars. Remaining to be answered is the question of how relatively isolated, low-mass systems such as dwarf galaxies sustain star formation for extended periods of time. Image released March 9, 2015.
Monday, March 9, 2015: Astrophotographer Ruslan Merzlyakov sent in a image showing a vortex of star trails created using Photoshop. He writes in an email…Read More »
message to Space.com: “I made a ‘selfie’ (yes, I am standing right there) in Stenbjerg, Thy National Park, Denmark.” That location lies on the coast in Northwest Jutland, Denmark. Image submitted March 5, 2015.
Friday, March 6, 2015: On Feb. 24, 2015, the sun flung out a coronal mass ejection with part of a solar filament over a 3-hour period. Some of the filament’s…Read More »
strands fell back into the sun, while a substantial part hung in space as a bright cloud of particles, as observed by the SOHO spacecraft in a wavelength of extreme ultraviolet light. The outburst occurred on the edge of the sun and was not expected to have any effect on Earth.
Thursday, March 5, 2015: Astrophotographer Joshua Blash sent in a photo of the Milky Way over Rye Beach, New Hampshire, taken Feb. 28, 2015, which he titled,…Read More »
"Shores of the Cosmic Ocean." He writes in an email message to Space.com: "With the Milky Way just starting to become visible again, I figured I would try to catch a glimpse while we were in-between snow storms, here in New Hampshire. In -6 degree weather, I headed over to a snowy Rye Beach and shot this around 4:30 am last Saturday, but I only had about an hour before the blue hour started."
Credit: ESA/Hubble, NASA, Karl Stapelfeldt (GSFC), B. Stecklum and A. Choudhary (Thüringer Landessternwarte Tautenburg, Germany)
Wednesday, March 4, 2015: A helical reflection nebula surrounds young star V1331 Cyg, which lies in the dark cloud LDN 981 (Lynds 981). Usually, dust from…Read More »
the circumstellar disc and the envelope surrounding it obscures our view of a young star. In the case of V1331 Cyg, our position allows us to look almost directly at one of the star's poles. We are looking into a jet expelled by the star that clears the dust, producing this unobstructed view. Image released March 2, 2015.
Tuesday, March 3, 2015: Spiral galaxy NGC 6300 lies in a starry patch of sky in the southern constellation of Ara (The Altar). It is classed as a Seyfert…Read More »
II galaxy, which possess unusually luminous centers emitting very energetic radiation. Astronomers think NGC 6300 contains a huge black hole in its center some 300,000 times more massive than the sun. This black hole emits high energy X-rays as feeds on the material it is pulling into it. Image released March 2, 2015.
Monday, March 2, 2015: Galaxy NGC 4424, located in the constellation of Virgo, does not appear to the naked eye. This NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image…Read More »
shows it edge on, but the galaxy does, in fact, possess a spiral shape. Another, smaller galaxy known as LEDA 213994 floats at the left, while the bright object closer to NGC 4424 is an anonymous star in the Milky Way. Image released Feb. 23, 2015.