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Space Image of the Day Gallery (January 2017)

Martin Luther King Jr. & Supermoon

NASA/Aubrey Gemignani

Monday, January 16, 2017: As the United States honors the legacy of civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr., NASA joined in with this flashback to the supermoon of November 2016 with the memorial of King in Washington, D.C. NASA photographer Aubrey Gemignani captured this image as the largest full moon since 1948 set over the monument to King. -- Tariq Malik

A Black Hole Inside Galaxy NGC-1448

Carnegie-Irvine Galaxy Survey/NASA/JPL-Caltech

Tuesday, January 17, 2017: This spiral galaxy contains a supermassive black hole that is hidden by cosmic dust and gas. This image combines data from the Carnegie-Irvine Galaxy Survey and the NuSTAR X-ray telescope. Astronomers discovered the black hole when they detected X-rays coming from the galaxy's core. — Hanneke Weitering

SpaceX Soars Once More

SpaceX

Wednesday, January 18, 2017: SpaceX returned to flight this weekend with a picture-perfect rocket launch and upright landing on a ship at sea. The rocket delivered 10 satellites into Earth's orbit. Read the full story here. — Hanneke Weitering

Italy From Space

ESA/NASA

Thursday, January 19, 2017: French Astronaut Thomas Pesquet snapped this gorgeous photo of Italy by night from the International Space Station. A docked Soyuz spacecraft is seen in the foreground. — Hanneke Weitering

The Sun in 2016

ESA/Royal Observatory of Belgium

Friday, January 20, 2017: This is what the sun looked like every day in 2016 through the eyes of the European Space Agency's Proba-2 satellite. The satellite's SWAP camera can detect extreme ultraviolet wavelengths, which allows it to observe the hot, turbulent atmosphere of the sun's corona. On its way to the minimum of its 11-year solar cycle, the number of sunspots and solar flares are diminishing. — Hanneke Weitering

A Tiny Galactic Nucleus

ESA/Hubble & NASA, Acknowledgement: Judy Schmidt

Monday, January 23, 2017: Most spiral galaxies like the Milky Way have a supermassive black hole at the center. But this spiral galaxy, named RX J1140.1+0307, is centered on a black hole with one of the lowest masses ever found in a galactic core. The Hubble Space Telescope captured this image of RX J1140.1+0307, which lies in the Virgo constellation. — Hanneke Weitering

Hello, Daphnis!

NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

Tuesday, January 24, 2017: Saturn's "wavemaker" moon Daphnis plays peek-a-boo with NASA's Cassini spacecraft, showing itself through a space between Saturn's rings called the Keeler Gap, where it orbits the giant planet. The little moon's gravity creates a ripple in Saturn's seemingly smooth ring plane. Cassini took this image on Jan. 16, and it's the closest view of Daphnis to date. — Hanneke Weitering

The Orion Nebula

Marc Juneau

Wednesday, January 25, 2017: Astrophotographer Marc Juneau took this picture of the Orion nebula from his backyard in San Pedro de Alcántara on the southern coast of Spain last spring. The Orion nebula lies more than 1,300 light-years away in the constellation Orion, just south of Orion's belt. It's bright enough to see with the naked eye, and looks like a star in the middle of Orion's sword. — Hanneke Weitering

Clouds of Andromeda

Rogelio Bernal Andreo, DeepSkyColors.com

Thursday, January 26, 2017: Award-winning astrophotographer Rogelio Bernal Andreo captured this incredible view of the Andromeda galaxy, or M31, along with some clouds of cosmic dust in the Milky Way galaxy. Andreo said that this is "the first known image of M31 that also shows at high resolution, depth and full color several of the cloud formations from our own Milky Way that happen to be in this very same field of view - but much closer to us than M31," which lies about 2.5 million light-years from Earth. — Hanneke Weitering

Remembering Apollo 1

NASA

Friday, January 27, 2017: Today marks the 50th anniversary of NASA's first major disaster, the Apollo 1 fire that killed astronauts Gus Grissom, Roger Chaffee and Ed White during a pre-flight test of the Apollo command module. In this photo, taken Jan. 19, 1967 (about a week before the accident), the crew trains for their planned spaceflight inside the Apollo Mission Simulator. — Hanneke Weitering

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