Image of the Day: March 2011

Walk in Silence


Tuesday, March 1, 2011: Halfway through the ISS airlock, Discovery shuttle astronaut Al Drew looks at the panorama for a second. This photo was taken by Italian astronaut Paolo Nespoli on the International Space Station on Feb. 28, 2011, during the first of two spacewalks for Discovery's STS-133 mission.

--Tom Chao

The Other One

ESA/Hubble & NASA

Wednesday, March 2, 2011: This NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image shows an outer part of the Orion Nebula's little brother, Messier 43, sometimes referred to as De Mairan's Nebula after its discoverer. Only a dark lane of dust separates it from the Orion Nebula (Messier 42).

--Tom Chao

We're Going to Have a Ball Tonight ... Down at the Globe


Thursday, March 3, 2011: This NASA/NOAA GOES-13 satellite image shows the Earth on March 2, 2010 at 8:45 UTC.

--Tom Chao

Horse in the Sky

Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope/Coelum

Friday, March 4, 2011: The Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope produced this stunning image of the well-known Horsehead Nebula. It is part of an enormous cloud of molecular gas and dust obscuring background light from nearby emission nebula IC 434, producing the silhouette.

--Tom Chao

Before the Blue Horizon


Monday, March 7, 2011: A thin line of Earth's atmosphere peeks out of the blackness of space, in this photo taken by the STS-133 crew. The image catches the docked Russian Soyuz spacecraft along the right side, while a portion of the International Space Station's Quest airlock and solar array panels sit at the upper right of the photo.

--Tom Chao

Lunar Transit Authority


Tuesday, March 8, 2011: NASA's SDO satellite photographed the moon passing in front of the sun, March 2-4, 2011.

--Tom Chao

The Young Ones


Wednesday, March 9, 2011: ESO's La Silla Observatory in Chile captured this image of many galaxies, as part of the COMBO-17 project (Classifying Objects by Medium-Band Observations in 17 Filters). Some of the most distant flecks of light visible in this photo represent galaxies whose light has been traveling towards us for about nine or ten billion years, revealing what the universe was like when it was much younger.

--Tom Chao

Home at Last

NASA/Jack Pfaller

Thursday, March 10, 2011: Space shuttle Discovery's 39th and final flight concluded on March 9, 2011. Here, the "towback" vehicle pulls the spacecraft into Orbiter Processing Facility-2 at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida for a well-deserved rest. NASA will now prepare Discovery for future public display.

--Tom Chao

Home Improvement

STS-133 Shuttle Crew, NASA

Friday, March 11, 2011: Space shuttle Discovery's crew took this image of the International Space Station (ISS) after departing to return to Earth on March 9, 2011. During their STS-133 mission, Discovery's crew added components including the Leonardo Multi Purpose Logistics Module, again changing the appearance of the ISS. Construction of the ISS began in 1998.

--Tom Chao

Before and After the Tsunami

German Aerospace Center (DLR)/Rapid Eye

Monday, March 14, 2011: These side-by-side images show the effects of the tsunami on Japan's coastline. Compare the image on the left, taken on September 5, 2010, to the image on the right, taken on March 12, 2011, one day after an 8.9-magnitude earthquake occurred in the Pacific Ocean, and resulting tsunami struck the Japanese island of Honshu.

--Tom Chao

Sendai, Japan in 2003


Tuesday, March 15, 2011: This night view from space shows city lights of Sendai, Japan, in 2003, before the destructive earthquake and tsunami of March 11, 2011. One of the Expedition 6 crew members onboard the International Space Station took this picture, 220 miles above the Earth.

--Tom Chao

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