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The Universe (753)
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This artist's animation illustrates the universe's early years, from its explosive formation to its dark ages to its first stars and mini-galaxies. Scientists using NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope found patches of infrared light splattered across the sky.
This artist's animation illustrates the universe's early years, from its explosive formation to its dark ages to its first stars and mini-galaxies. Scientists using NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope found patches of infrared light splattered across the sky.

Stars Spring up Out of the Darkness (Artist Concept)

This image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope (left panel) shows the 'bow shock' of a dying star named R Hydrae, or R Hya, in the constellation Hydra.
This image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope (left panel) shows the 'bow shock' of a dying star named R Hydrae, or R Hya, in the constellation Hydra.

Red Giant Plunging Through Space

The Trifid Nebula is a giant star-forming cloud of gas and dust located 5,400 light-years away in the constellation Sagittarius, seen here by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.
The Trifid Nebula is a giant star-forming cloud of gas and dust located 5,400 light-years away in the constellation Sagittarius, seen here by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.

Stellar 'Incubators' Seen Cooking up Stars

This Spitzer Space Telescope composite shows the supernova remnant Cassiopeia A (white ball) and surrounding clouds of dust (gray, orange and blue). It consists of two processed images taken one year apart.
This Spitzer Space Telescope composite shows the supernova remnant Cassiopeia A (white ball) and surrounding clouds of dust (gray, orange and blue). It consists of two processed images taken one year apart.

Dead Star Rumbles

This composite image NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer  shows Z Camelopardalis, or Z Cam, a double-star system featuring a collapsed, dead star, called a white dwarf, and a companion star, as well as a ghostly shell around the system.
This composite image NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer  shows Z Camelopardalis, or Z Cam, a double-star system featuring a collapsed, dead star, called a white dwarf, and a companion star, as well as a ghostly shell around the system.

Scene of Multiple Explosions

NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows two opposing bubbles being formed in opposite directions by the powerful outflows from massive groups of forming stars. The baby stars can be seen as specks of yellow where the two bubbles overlap.
NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows two opposing bubbles being formed in opposite directions by the powerful outflows from massive groups of forming stars. The baby stars can be seen as specks of yellow where the two bubbles overlap.

Black Widow Nebula Hiding in the Dust

This image from  NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, shows the wispy filamentary structure of Henize 206, is a four-color composite mosaic created by combining data from an infrared array camera (IRAC).
This image from  NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, shows the wispy filamentary structure of Henize 206, is a four-color composite mosaic created by combining data from an infrared array camera (IRAC).

Star Formation in Henize 206

A cluster brimming with millions of stars glistens like an iridescent opal in this image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope. Called Omega Centauri, the sparkling orb of stars is like a miniature galaxy.
A cluster brimming with millions of stars glistens like an iridescent opal in this image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope. Called Omega Centauri, the sparkling orb of stars is like a miniature galaxy.

Omega Centauri Looks Radiant in Infrared

Filamentary structures in our Milky Way galaxy are apparent at large scales, as shown in this ESA image from Planck image, on the right, and small scales as seen the Herschel image on the left.
Filamentary structures in our Milky Way galaxy are apparent at large scales, as shown in this ESA image from Planck image, on the right, and small scales as seen the Herschel image on the left.

Milky Way Dust at Different Scales

This infrared image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows three baby stars in the bustling center of our Milky Way galaxy. The three stars are the first to be discovered in the region.
This infrared image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows three baby stars in the bustling center of our Milky Way galaxy. The three stars are the first to be discovered in the region.

Baby Stars Finally Found in Jumbled Galactic Center

This composite image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows the remnant of a star that exploded, called Cassiopeia A (center) and its surrounding 'light echoes' -- dances of light through dusty clouds, created when stars blast apart.
This composite image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows the remnant of a star that exploded, called Cassiopeia A (center) and its surrounding 'light echoes' -- dances of light through dusty clouds, created when stars blast apart.

Dance of the Light Echoes

Infant stars are glowing gloriously in this image of the Serpens star-forming region, captured by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.
The reddish-pink dots are baby stars deeply embedded in the cosmic cloud of gas and dust that collapsed to create it.
Infant stars are glowing gloriously in this image of the Serpens star-forming region, captured by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.
The reddish-pink dots are baby stars deeply embedded in the cosmic cloud of gas and dust that collapsed to create it.

Seeing Stars in Serpens

This image illustrates that buckyballs -- discovered in space by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope -- closely resemble old fashioned, black-and-white soccer balls, only on much smaller scales.
This image illustrates that buckyballs -- discovered in space by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope -- closely resemble old fashioned, black-and-white soccer balls, only on much smaller scales.

Mini Soccer Balls in Space

A big galaxy is stealing gas right off the 'back' of its smaller companion in this new image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope. The stolen gas is hot, but it might eventually cool down to make new stars and planets.
A big galaxy is stealing gas right off the 'back' of its smaller companion in this new image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope. The stolen gas is hot, but it might eventually cool down to make new stars and planets.

Wanted: Galactic Thief Who Steals Gas

In this artist's conception, a possible newfound planet spins through a clearing in a nearby star's dusty, planet-forming disc. This clearing was detected around the star CoKu Tau 4 by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.
In this artist's conception, a possible newfound planet spins through a clearing in a nearby star's dusty, planet-forming disc. This clearing was detected around the star CoKu Tau 4 by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.

Out of the Dust, A Planet is Born (Artist Concept)

More than 800,000 frames from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope were stitched together to create this infrared portrait of dust and stars radiating in the inner Milky Way.
More than 800,000 frames from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope were stitched together to create this infrared portrait of dust and stars radiating in the inner Milky Way.

Spitzer Finds Clarity in the Inner Milky Way

This artist's concept, based on spectral observations from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope and Spitzer Space Telescope, shows a cloudy Jupiter-like planet that orbits very close to its fiery hot star.
This artist's concept, based on spectral observations from NASA's Hubble Space Telescope and Spitzer Space Telescope, shows a cloudy Jupiter-like planet that orbits very close to its fiery hot star.

Exotic Atmospheres (Artist Concept)

The potential planet-forming disk (or 'protoplanetary disk') of a sun-like star is being violently ripped away by the powerful winds of a nearby hot O-type star in this image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.
The potential planet-forming disk (or 'protoplanetary disk') of a sun-like star is being violently ripped away by the powerful winds of a nearby hot O-type star in this image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.

A Star's Close Encounter

Blobs are intensely glowing clouds of hot hydrogen gas that envelop faraway galaxies. NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope was able to see the dusty galaxies tucked inside one well-known blob located 11 billion light-years away.
Blobs are intensely glowing clouds of hot hydrogen gas that envelop faraway galaxies. NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope was able to see the dusty galaxies tucked inside one well-known blob located 11 billion light-years away.

Mysterious Blob Galaxies Revealed

This ultraviolet color blowup of the Groth Deep Image was taken by NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer on June 22 and June 23, 2003. Many hundreds of galaxies are detected in this portion of the image.
This ultraviolet color blowup of the Groth Deep Image was taken by NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer on June 22 and June 23, 2003. Many hundreds of galaxies are detected in this portion of the image.

Groth Deep Image

This artist's diagram based on observations from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope compares the Epsilon Eridani system to our own solar system. The two systems are structure
This artist's diagram based on observations from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope compares the Epsilon Eridani system to our own solar system. The two systems are structure

Young Solar System in the Making (Artist Concept)

More than 444,580 frames from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope were stitched together to create this portrait of the raging star-formation occurring in the inner Milky Way.
More than 444,580 frames from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope were stitched together to create this portrait of the raging star-formation occurring in the inner Milky Way.

Inner Milky Way Raging with Star Formation

Stars in the upper portion of the constellation Orion the Hunter, including the bright shoulder star Betelgeuse and Orion's three-star belt, appear in this image taken from the surface of Mars by the panoramic camera on NASA's rover Spirit.
Stars in the upper portion of the constellation Orion the Hunter, including the bright shoulder star Betelgeuse and Orion's three-star belt, appear in this image taken from the surface of Mars by the panoramic camera on NASA's rover Spirit.

Stars in Orion as Seen from Mars

This image zooms into a small portion of NASA's Kepler's full field of view -- an expansive, 100-square-degree patch of sky in our Milky Way galaxy. At the center of the field is a star with a known 'hot Jupiter' planet, named 'TrES-2.'
This image zooms into a small portion of NASA's Kepler's full field of view -- an expansive, 100-square-degree patch of sky in our Milky Way galaxy. At the center of the field is a star with a known 'hot Jupiter' planet, named 'TrES-2.'

Host to 'Hot Jupiter'

This star chart illustrates the large patch of sky that NASA's Kepler mission will stare at for the duration of its three-and-a-half-year lifetime.
This star chart illustrates the large patch of sky that NASA's Kepler mission will stare at for the duration of its three-and-a-half-year lifetime.

Where Kepler Sees

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