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The Universe (917)
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The Cassini spacecraft takes a break from the Saturn system to check out the Seven Sisters.
The Cassini spacecraft takes a break from the Saturn system to check out the Seven Sisters.

Scoping the Sisters

This image from NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer shows the galaxy NGC 1291, located about 33 million light-years away in the constellation Eridanus. NGC 1291 is notable for its unusual inner bar and outer ring structure.
This image from NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer shows the galaxy NGC 1291, located about 33 million light-years away in the constellation Eridanus. NGC 1291 is notable for its unusual inner bar and outer ring structure.

NGC 1291

NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope and the National Optical Astronomy Observatory compare infrared and visible views of the famous Orion nebula and its surrounding cloud, an industrious star-making region located near the hunter constellation's sword.
NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope and the National Optical Astronomy Observatory compare infrared and visible views of the famous Orion nebula and its surrounding cloud, an industrious star-making region located near the hunter constellation's sword.

The Infrared Hunter

This false-color image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows a distant galaxy (yellow) that houses a quasar, a super-massive black hole circled by a ring, or torus, of gas and dust.
This false-color image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows a distant galaxy (yellow) that houses a quasar, a super-massive black hole circled by a ring, or torus, of gas and dust.

Gorilla Black Hole in the Mist

Here we see two different views of the spiral galaxy, Messier 81. On the left is an image taken in blue light, while on the right is a specially-processed version of an image taken with NASA's Spitzer's infrared array camera at 4.5 microns.
Here we see two different views of the spiral galaxy, Messier 81. On the left is an image taken in blue light, while on the right is a specially-processed version of an image taken with NASA's Spitzer's infrared array camera at 4.5 microns.

"Missing Link" Found

Tones represents sound waves that traveled through the early universe, and were later 'heard' by ESA's Planck space telescope. The primordial sound waves have been translated into frequencies we can hear.
Tones represents sound waves that traveled through the early universe, and were later 'heard' by ESA's Planck space telescope. The primordial sound waves have been translated into frequencies we can hear.

Sounds of the Ancient Universe

ESA's Planck has imaged the most distant light we can observe, called the cosmic microwave background, with unprecedented precision.
ESA's Planck has imaged the most distant light we can observe, called the cosmic microwave background, with unprecedented precision.

Through the Universe's Looking Glass

Results from NASA's NEOWISE survey find that more potentially hazardous asteroids, or PHAs, are closely aligned with the plane of our solar system than previous models suggested.
Results from NASA's NEOWISE survey find that more potentially hazardous asteroids, or PHAs, are closely aligned with the plane of our solar system than previous models suggested.

The Hustle and Bustle of our Solar System

These images, taken with NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer and the Pan-STARRS1 telescope in Hawaii, show a brightening inside a galaxy caused by a flare from its nucleus. The arrow in each image points to the galaxy.
These images, taken with NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer and the Pan-STARRS1 telescope in Hawaii, show a brightening inside a galaxy caused by a flare from its nucleus. The arrow in each image points to the galaxy.

Black Hole Swallows a Star

This diagram illustrates why NASA's NuSTAR can see radioactivity in the remains of exploded stars for the first time. The observatory detects high-energy X-ray photons that are released by a radioactive substance called titanium-44.
This diagram illustrates why NASA's NuSTAR can see radioactivity in the remains of exploded stars for the first time. The observatory detects high-energy X-ray photons that are released by a radioactive substance called titanium-44.

The Creation of Titanium in Stars

This artist concept illustrates how a massive collision of objects perhaps as large as the planet Pluto smashed together to create the dust ring around the nearby star Vega.
This artist concept illustrates how a massive collision of objects perhaps as large as the planet Pluto smashed together to create the dust ring around the nearby star Vega.

Massive Smash-up at Vega (Artist Concept)

This artist's conception compares the KOI-961 planetary system to Jupiter and the largest four of its many moons. The KOI-961 planetary system hosts the three smallest planets known to orbit a star beyond our sun.
This artist's conception compares the KOI-961 planetary system to Jupiter and the largest four of its many moons. The KOI-961 planetary system hosts the three smallest planets known to orbit a star beyond our sun.

'Honey I Shrunk the Planetary System' (Artist Concept)

This graph illustrates the Cepheid period-luminosity relationship, used to calculate the size, age and expansion rate of the universe. The data shown are from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope which has made the most precise measurements yet.
This graph illustrates the Cepheid period-luminosity relationship, used to calculate the size, age and expansion rate of the universe. The data shown are from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope which has made the most precise measurements yet.

Cepheids as Cosmology Tools

This all-sky image shows the spatial distribution over the whole sky of the galactic haze at 30 and 44 GHz, extracted from the Planck observations.
This all-sky image shows the spatial distribution over the whole sky of the galactic haze at 30 and 44 GHz, extracted from the Planck observations.

The Mysterious Galactic Haze seen by Planck

This series of images from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows a dark mass of gas and dust, called a core, where new stars and planets will likely spring up. This particular core lies deep within a larger dark cloud called L183.
This series of images from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows a dark mass of gas and dust, called a core, where new stars and planets will likely spring up. This particular core lies deep within a larger dark cloud called L183.

An Unexpected Scattering of Light

The galaxies pictured here have so much dust surrounding them that the brilliant light from their quasars cannot be seen in these images from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope.
The galaxies pictured here have so much dust surrounding them that the brilliant light from their quasars cannot be seen in these images from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope.

The Homes of Quasars

A hypothetical planet is depicted in this artist's concept moving through the habitable zone and then further out into a long, cold winter.
A hypothetical planet is depicted in this artist's concept moving through the habitable zone and then further out into a long, cold winter.

Eccentric Habitable Zones (Artist's Concept)

This image zooms in on the region around the first 'hot DOG' (red object in magenta circle), discovered by NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, or WISE. Hot DOGs are hot dust-obscured galaxies.
This image zooms in on the region around the first 'hot DOG' (red object in magenta circle), discovered by NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, or WISE. Hot DOGs are hot dust-obscured galaxies.

Extremely Bright and Extremely Rare

Two large elliptical galaxies, NGC 4889 and NGC 4874 are shown in this image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.
Two large elliptical galaxies, NGC 4889 and NGC 4874 are shown in this image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.

Dwarfs in Coma Cluster

This image shows the first-ever map of the surface of an exoplanet, or a planet beyond our solar system. Showing temperature variations across the cloudy tops of a gas giant called HD 189733b, the infrared data is taken by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.
This image shows the first-ever map of the surface of an exoplanet, or a planet beyond our solar system. Showing temperature variations across the cloudy tops of a gas giant called HD 189733b, the infrared data is taken by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.

First Map of Alien World (animation)

This artist's animation shows a typical young galaxy, teeming with hot, newborn stars and exploding supernovas. The supernovas are seen as white flashes of light.
This artist's animation shows a typical young galaxy, teeming with hot, newborn stars and exploding supernovas. The supernovas are seen as white flashes of light.

Fires of Galactic Youth (Artist Animation)

This artist's concept illustrates how planetary systems arise out of massive collisions between rocky bodies. NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope show that these catastrophes continue to occur around stars even after they have developed full-sized planets.
This artist's concept illustrates how planetary systems arise out of massive collisions between rocky bodies. NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope show that these catastrophes continue to occur around stars even after they have developed full-sized planets.

The Rocky World of Young Planetary Systems (Artist Concept)

In the image from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, angelic figures take on the form of the galactic group called Stephan's Quintet.
In the image from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, angelic figures take on the form of the galactic group called Stephan's Quintet.

Stephan's Quintet

Astronomers have found unexpected rings and arcs of ultraviolet light around a selection of galaxies, four of which are shown here as viewed by NASA's and the European Space Agency's Hubble Space Telescope.
Astronomers have found unexpected rings and arcs of ultraviolet light around a selection of galaxies, four of which are shown here as viewed by NASA's and the European Space Agency's Hubble Space Telescope.

Ultraviolet Ring Around the Galaxies

This image from NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, shows four galaxies in the Virgo cluster: Messier 59, Messier 60, NGC 4647, and NGC 4638. It also shows the tracks of three asteroids, which appear in this image as trails of green dots.
This image from NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, shows four galaxies in the Virgo cluster: Messier 59, Messier 60, NGC 4647, and NGC 4638. It also shows the tracks of three asteroids, which appear in this image as trails of green dots.

Asteroids in Virgo

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