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Best Space Photos of the Week - May 5, 2014

ESO L. Calçada/N. Risinger

This artist’s view shows the planet orbiting the young star Beta Pictoris. This exoplanet is the first to have its rotation rate measured. Its eight-hour day corresponds to an equatorial rotation speed of 100,000 kilometers/hour — much faster than any planet in the Solar System. [See more photos here.]

Solar Eclipse Photos by Australian Stargazers

Michael Wright

The first solar eclipse of 2014 occurred on April 29, 2014 and was visible from most of Australia as a partial solar eclipse, though at its peak the event was a "ring of fire" annular eclipse over an uninhabited stretch of Antarctica. [See more photos here.]

Europe's Vega Rocket Launches Earth-watching Satellite for Kazakhstan

Arianespace

A lightweight Vega launcher raced into space from French Guiana on Tuesday night (April 29), boosting a European-built satellite into a 466-mile-high polar orbit with a high-resolution telescope to survey cities, natural resources, and disasters for Kazakh government authorities. [Read the full story]

Boeing Unveils Cabin Design for Commercial Spaceliner

Boeing

Boeing has seen the future of private human spaceflight, and it is blue. Sky blue, that is. The aerospace giant has unveiled its new concept for the cabin of a future commercial spaceliner. [Read the full story]

NASA Spacecraft Snaps Amazing Photo of Uranus from Saturn's Orbit

NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

The Cassini spacecraft, in orbit around Saturn, has snapped an amazing photo of Uranus shining millions of miles away from the ringed wonder. [Read the full story]

European Satellite Sees Solar Eclipse from Space

ESA

The European Space Agency's Proba-2 spacecraft captured video of the partial solar eclipse Tuesday (April 29), which was visible on Earth primarily from Australia and Indonesia. [Read the full story]

Watch a Giant Solar 'Tornado' Whirl Off the Sun

NASA/SDO

A NASA spacecraft has captured spectacular video of an enormous plasma "tornado" spinning off the sun. [Read the full story]

SpaceX Video Captures Grainy View of Amazing Reusable Rocket Landing Test

SpaceX via Elon Musk

The private spaceflight company SpaceX captured its unprecedented reusable rocket test on video, but representatives with the company need your help to clean up the grainy footage. [Read the full story]

3D Printing: 10 Ways It Could Transform Space Travel

ESA

The European Space Agency is investigates how the 3D printers and 3D printing technology could transform everything we think about space missions. Here's a look at 10 ways 3D printing could change space travel, courtesy of ESA scientists. [See more photos here.]

NASA Unveils Futuristic Z-2 Spacesuit: Mars-Tough Duds that Glow

NASA

NASA unveiled the new design for its advanced Z-2 spacesuit prototype on Wednesday (April 30) based on a public online vote. The spacesuit is a testbed for technologies that help support astronauts on missions to Mars and beyond. [Read the full story]

NASA's Inflatable Flying Saucer for Mars Landings

NASA/JPL

NASA workers at the agency's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, wearing clean room "bunny suits," prepare the LDSD test article for shipment later this month to Hawaii. LDSD will help land bigger space payloads on Mars or return them back to Earth. [See more photos here.]

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