Space Image of the Day Gallery (June 2017)

Image of the Day Archives

NASA, ESA and Orsola De Marco (Macquarie University)

For older Image of the Day pictures, please visit the Image of the Day archives. Pictured: NGC 2467.

Crescent Moon & Venus

ESO/Y. Beletsky

Thursday, June 1, 2017: A big, bright Venus dominates the sky beside a tiny sliver of a crescent moon in this photo by European Southern Observatory photographer Yuri Beletsky. The stunning celestial pair rose within just a few degrees of each other in the early morning sky on Monday, May 22. — Hanneke Weitering

Falcon 9 on Pad 39A

Glenn Benson/NASA

Friday, June 2, 2017: SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket and first refurbished Dragon spacecraft stand ready for launch on NASA's historic Launch Complex 39A at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The two were set to blast off toward the International Space Station yesterday, but the flight was delayed due to lightning strikes in the area. Their next launch window opens on Saturday (June 3) at 5:07 p.m. EDT (2107 GMT). — Hanneke Weitering

SpaceX Sticks Another Landing


Monday, June 5, 2017: After launching its 11th cargo resupply mission toward the International Space Station on Saturday (June 3), SpaceX brought a Falcon 9 rocket booster back for another incredible upright landing at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. — Hanneke Weitering

Drifting Down to Earth

Stephane Corvaja/ESA

Tuesday, June 6, 2017: A Russian Soyuz spacecraft parachutes down to Earth, bringing European Space Agency astronaut Thomas Pesquet and Russian cosmonaut Oleg Novitskiy back from a 196-day stay aboard the International Space Station. The two touched down in Kazakhstan on Friday (June 2) at 10:10 a.m. EDT (1410 GMT or 8:10 p.m. local Kazakh time). — Hanneke Weitering

Venus & the Milky Way

Oscar Vasquez

Wednesday, June 7, 2017: A skywatcher gazes at the Milky Way with Venus shining brightly on the horizon in this photo taken at Gallagher Canyon near Lexington, Nebraska on Nov. 30, 2016. Amateur astrophotographer Oscar Vasquez told that this was "the first picture I have ever taken where you can actually appreciate the night sky." — Hanneke Weitering

Pence Welcomes New Astronauts

Bill Ingalls/NASA

Thursday, June 8, 2017: U.S. Vice President Mike Pence gave a warm welcome to NASA's newest astronaut class at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston yesterday after the space agency announced their latest recruits. — Hanneke Weitering

A Once-Watery Martian Crater


Friday, June 9, 2017: This ancient Martian crater may have once been filled with water. The European Space Agency's Mars Express orbiter created this composite image of the scene, which is located in the Margaritifer Terra region of the planet's southern hemisphere. So-called "chaotic terrain" seen in and around the 44-mile-wide (70 km) crater suggests that there could have been a lake or large amounts of subsurface water in the region around 4 billion years ago. — Hanneke Weitering

Stellar Symbiosis

NASA/CXC/SAO/R. Montez et al./Adam Block/Mt. Lemmon SkyCenter/U. Arizona

Monday, June 12, 2017: R Aquarii looks like one star, but it actually consists of two so-called "symbiotic stars" — one small, dense white dwarf and a larger, cooler red giant. The white dwarf star is less massive than its red giant companion, but it's also more compact, which gives it a strong gravitational force. It pulls away the outer layers of the red giant, accumulating enough material to trigger thermonuclear fusion of hydrogen. This produces occasional nova explosions on its surface. — Hanneke Weitering

Saturn & Mimas

NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute

Tuesday, June 13, 2017: Far out in the background of this image from NASA's Cassini spacecraft is Saturn's "Death Star" moon, Mimas. The little moon measures only 246 miles (396 kilometers across) across and has a large basin spanning roughly one-third its diameter. Cassini captured this photo while orbiting over Saturn's northern hemisphere on March 27. — Hanneke Weitering

Space Station Flyover

Gowrishankar L.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017: The International Space Station streaks across the New Jersey sky in this image by astrophotographer Gowrishankar L. It flew over an observatory at Jenny Jump State Forest for about five minutes on June 3, taking just enough time for the stars to leave small trails in the photo as they circle around the North Star. — Hanneke Weitering

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