Scores of baby stars shrouded by dust are revealed in this infrared image of the star-forming region NGC 2174, as seen by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope. Found in the constellation Orion, NGC 2174 is located around 6,400 light-years away.
This sky map shows the location of the star HD 219134 (circle), host to the nearest confirmed rocky planet found to date outside of our solar system. The star lies just off the 'W' shape of the constellation Cassiopeia.
Little Black Spot on the Star Today (Artist's Concept)
This artist's conception shows the silhouette of a rocky planet, dubbed HD 219134b, as it passes in front of its star. At 21 light-years away, the planet is the closest outside of our solar system that can be seen crossing, or transiting, its star.
This artist's concept shows a hypothetical 'rejuvenated' planet,a gas giant that has reclaimed its youthful infrared glow. NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope found tentative evidence for one such planet around a dead star, or white dwarf, called PG 0010+280.
NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope observed a proposed helium planet, GJ 436b.This diagram illustrates how hypothetical helium atmospheres might form. These would be on planets about the mass of Neptune, or smaller.
Planets having atmospheres rich in helium may be common in our galaxy, according to a new theory based on data from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope. This artist's concept depicts a proposed helium-atmosphere planet called GJ 436b.
Map of Exoplanets Found in Our Galaxy (Artist's Concept)
This artist's map of the Milky Way shows the location of one of the farthest known exoplanets, lying 13,000 light-years away. Most of the thousands of exoplanets discovered to date are closer to our solar system, as indicated by the pink/orange areas.
First Stars or Stray Stars? A Cosmic Infrared Mystery
Our sky is filled with a diffuse background glow, known as the cosmic infrared background. Much of the light is from galaxies we know about, but previous Spitzer measurements have shown an extra component of unknown origin.
This image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows where the action is taking place in galaxy NGC 1291. The outer ring, colored red, is filled with new stars that are igniting and heating up dust that glows with infrared light.
A plot of the transmission spectrum for exoplanet HAT-P-11b, with data from NASA's Kepler, Hubble and Spitzer observatories combined. The results show a robust detection of water absorption in the Hubble data.
Seeing Starlight Through a Planet's Rim (Artist's Concept)
A Neptune-size planet with a clear atmosphere is shown crossing in front of its star in this artist's depiction. Such crossings, or transits, are observed by telescopes like NASA's Hubble and Spitzer to glean information about planets' atmospheres.
Millions of galaxies populate the patch of sky known as the COSMOS field, short for Cosmic Evolution Survey, a portion of which is shown here. Even the smallest dots in this image are galaxies, some up to 12 billion light-years away.