Best Space Photos of the Week - May 20, 2012

How to Safely Photograph the Sun (A Photo Guide)

Imelda Joson and Edwin Aguirre

Eclipse or not, always use a proper filter when observing or photographing the sun. Regular sunglasses and photographic polarizing or neutral-density (ND) filters are not safe for use on the sun. [Full Photo Gallery]

Antarctica from Above: Watch the Birth of an Iceberg

Jefferson Beck/NASA

A gigantic plain of ice clinging to the edge of Antarctica is splitting in two. The Pine Island Glacier ice shelf is giving birth to a giant iceberg, and NASA scientists happened to be on hand to catch some stunning, up-close views of the action. [Full Story]

Mock Mars Rover Takes Desert Test Drive


NASA took a mock-up of its next Mars rover out to Death Valley's dunes, to test out the robot's sand-driving performance. [Full Story]

Omega Centauri Shines Over Dark Forest in Skywatcher Photo

Tunc Tezel / TWAN

Omega Centauri, the brightest and largest known globular cluster in the Milky Way, shines brightly over a dark forest in this skywatching photo. [Full Story]


A movie poster for "Battleship", based on the classic board game. [Full Photo Gallery]

Weird Galaxy Glows Bright in Amazing Telescope Photo


The strange galaxy Centaurus A is pictured in a new image from the European Southern Observatory. The image was produced by the MPG/ESO 2.2-meter telescope at the La Silla Observatory in Chile. [Full Story]

Breathtaking View of Earth Taken by Russian Satellite


Think of it as an amped up version of the iconic "Blue Marble" image. A new photo of Earth from space highlights the striking beauty and intensely rich colors of our home planet. [Full Story]

Rocket from Russia

S.P. Korolev RSC "Energia"

A Soyuz TMA-04M spacecraft lifted off from Baikonur launch site at 07:01:23 AM Moscow Time on May 15, 2012. The spacecraft brings three spaceflyers to complete the six-person crew of Expedition 31. The crew of Soyuz TMA-04M consists of Russian cosmonauts Gennady Padalka (commander) and Sergei Revin (flight engineer) and US astronaut Joseph Acaba (flight engineer). [More Images]

Will It Go Round in Circles

Don Pettit (via Twitter as @astro_Pettit)

Astronaut Don Pettit, on board the International Space Station as a member of Expedition 30/31 tweeted this photo from space. He described it as: “Pac-man in Brazil as seen from ISS” Looks more like pie charts to us. [More Images]

Ancient Asteroid Impact on the Moon

Dan Durda/FIAAA

This artist's impression illustrates how the early moon (and Earth) were reshaped by an intense period of bombardment. Asteroids appear to be the dominant impactors. [ Get More Images]

Star Trails Seen from the ISS in Swirls

Don Pettit

Expedition 31 Flight Engineer Don Pettit took photos of star trails, terrestrial lights, airglow and auroras while aboard the International Space Station. Image taken May 17, 2012. [ Get More Images]

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