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This artist's concept shows the searing-hot gas planet WASP-12b (orange orb) and its star. NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope discovered that the planet has more carbon than oxygen, making it the first carbon-rich planet ever observed.
This artist's concept shows the searing-hot gas planet WASP-12b (orange orb) and its star. NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope discovered that the planet has more carbon than oxygen, making it the first carbon-rich planet ever observed.

Hot, Carbon-Rich Planet (Artist Concept)

NASA's Great Observatories continue Galileo's legacy with stunning images and breakthrough science from the Hubble Space Telescope, the Spitzer Space Telescope, and the Chandra X-ray Observatory.
NASA's Great Observatories continue Galileo's legacy with stunning images and breakthrough science from the Hubble Space Telescope, the Spitzer Space Telescope, and the Chandra X-ray Observatory.

NASA's Great Observatories Celebrate the International Year of Astronomy

This painterly portrait of a star-forming cloud, called NGC 346, is a combination of multiwavelength light from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, the European Southern Observatory's New Technology Telescope, and the European Space Agency.
This painterly portrait of a star-forming cloud, called NGC 346, is a combination of multiwavelength light from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, the European Southern Observatory's New Technology Telescope, and the European Space Agency.

Stellar Work of Art

These postage-stamp images taken by NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer are helping to solve a mystery -- why do the littlest of galaxies produce the biggest of star explosions, or supernovae?
These postage-stamp images taken by NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer are helping to solve a mystery -- why do the littlest of galaxies produce the biggest of star explosions, or supernovae?

Little Galaxies Pack a Big Punch

This image taken with the Palomar Observatory's Hale Telescope, shows the light from three planets orbiting a star 120 light-years away. The planets' star, called HR8799, is located at the spot marked with an 'X.'
This image taken with the Palomar Observatory's Hale Telescope, shows the light from three planets orbiting a star 120 light-years away. The planets' star, called HR8799, is located at the spot marked with an 'X.'

Portrait of Distant Planets

This image is an all-sky infrared map consisting of data taken by previous missions: the Infrared Astronomical Satellite; NASA's Cosmic Background Explorer; and the Two-Micron All-Sky Survey.
This image is an all-sky infrared map consisting of data taken by previous missions: the Infrared Astronomical Satellite; NASA's Cosmic Background Explorer; and the Two-Micron All-Sky Survey.

WISE Eyes the Whole Sky

NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer is celebrates its fourth year in space with some of M81's 'hottest' stars. In this ultraviolet image, the magnificent M81 spiral galaxy is shown at the center.
NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer is celebrates its fourth year in space with some of M81's 'hottest' stars. In this ultraviolet image, the magnificent M81 spiral galaxy is shown at the center.

Galaxy Mission Completes Four Star-Studded Years in Space

This image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows the nasty effects of living near a group of massive stars: radiation and winds from the massive stars (white spot in center) are blasting planet-making material away from stars like our sun.
This image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows the nasty effects of living near a group of massive stars: radiation and winds from the massive stars (white spot in center) are blasting planet-making material away from stars like our sun.

Devastated Stellar Neighborhood

Located 1,000 light years from Earth in the constellation Perseus, a reflection nebula called NGC 1333 epitomizes the beautiful chaos of a dense group of stars being born. This image is from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.
Located 1,000 light years from Earth in the constellation Perseus, a reflection nebula called NGC 1333 epitomizes the beautiful chaos of a dense group of stars being born. This image is from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.

Chaotic Star Birth

NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has imaged an unusual edge-on galaxy, revealing remarkable details of its warped dusty disc and showing how colliding galaxies trigger the birth of new stars.
NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has imaged an unusual edge-on galaxy, revealing remarkable details of its warped dusty disc and showing how colliding galaxies trigger the birth of new stars.

Edge-on Galaxy

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.
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.

Helium-Shrouded Planets (Artist's Concept)

This frame from an animation based on NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope data  illustrates an unexpected warm spot on the surface of a gaseous exoplanet. The bright orange patches are the hottest part of the planet.
This frame from an animation based on NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope data  illustrates an unexpected warm spot on the surface of a gaseous exoplanet. The bright orange patches are the hottest part of the planet.

Weird Warm Spot on Exoplanet

The entire sky as mapped by NASA's WISE at infrared wavelengths is shown here, with an artist's concept of the WISE satellite superimposed.
The entire sky as mapped by NASA's WISE at infrared wavelengths is shown here, with an artist's concept of the WISE satellite superimposed.

A WISE 'Eye' on the Whole Sky

Observations from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope provide strong evidence that the slender, bulgeless galaxies can, like their chubbier counterparts, harbor supermassive black holes at their cores in this artist concept.
Observations from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope provide strong evidence that the slender, bulgeless galaxies can, like their chubbier counterparts, harbor supermassive black holes at their cores in this artist concept.

Galaxies of all Shapes Host Black Holes (Artist Concept)

Kepler-7b (right), which is 1.5 times the radius of Jupiter (left), is the first exoplanet to have its clouds mapped. The cloud map was produced using data from NASA's Kepler and Spitzer space telescopes.
Kepler-7b (right), which is 1.5 times the radius of Jupiter (left), is the first exoplanet to have its clouds mapped. The cloud map was produced using data from NASA's Kepler and Spitzer space telescopes.

Partially Cloudy Skies on Kepler-7b (Artist Concept)

This ESA Herschel image shows IRC+10216, also known as CW Leonis, a star rich in carbon where astronomers were surprised to find water. This color-coded image shows the star, surrounded by a clumpy envelope of dust.
This ESA Herschel image shows IRC+10216, also known as CW Leonis, a star rich in carbon where astronomers were surprised to find water. This color-coded image shows the star, surrounded by a clumpy envelope of dust.

Water Around a Carbon Star

This diagram shows findings of results of observations made primarily by NASA's Spitzer Telescopes and the Very Large Array radio telescope and illuminates new details about a celestial 'sandbar' connecting two massive islands of galaxies.
This diagram shows findings of results of observations made primarily by NASA's Spitzer Telescopes and the Very Large Array radio telescope and illuminates new details about a celestial 'sandbar' connecting two massive islands of galaxies.

Bent Galactic Jets

An infrared photo of the Small Magellanic Cloud taken by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope is shown in this artist's illustration; an example of a planetary nebula, and a magnified depiction of buckyballs.
An infrared photo of the Small Magellanic Cloud taken by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope is shown in this artist's illustration; an example of a planetary nebula, and a magnified depiction of buckyballs.

Extragalactic Space Balls (Artist Concept)

ESA's Planck mission has imaged the oldest light in our universe. The top map shows Planck's all-sky map of the cosmic microwave background, whereas the bottom map shows the largest-scale features of the map.
ESA's Planck mission has imaged the oldest light in our universe. The top map shows Planck's all-sky map of the cosmic microwave background, whereas the bottom map shows the largest-scale features of the map.

Peculiar Features in Patterns of Ancient Light

This artist's concept shows hundreds of brown dwarfs (deep red), expected to be added to the population of known stars in our solar neighborhood. Our sun and other known stars appear white, yellow or red.
This artist's concept shows hundreds of brown dwarfs (deep red), expected to be added to the population of known stars in our solar neighborhood. Our sun and other known stars appear white, yellow or red.

Coolest Orbs on the Block (Artist's Concept)

The new AllWISE catalog will bring distant galaxies that were once invisible out of hiding, as illustrated in this image. At right, a portion of the sky available before the AllWISE project; at left, the same part of the sky in a new AllWISE image.
The new AllWISE catalog will bring distant galaxies that were once invisible out of hiding, as illustrated in this image. At right, a portion of the sky available before the AllWISE project; at left, the same part of the sky in a new AllWISE image.

AllWISE Brings Galaxies Out of Hiding

This graph of data from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows how astronomers located a hot spot on a distant gas planet named upsilon Andromedae b. Termed an exoplanet, it orbits a star beyond our sun, and whips around very closely to its star.
This graph of data from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows how astronomers located a hot spot on a distant gas planet named upsilon Andromedae b. Termed an exoplanet, it orbits a star beyond our sun, and whips around very closely to its star.

How to Find a Planetary Hot Spot

Evidence from NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer and Galaxy Evolution Explorer missions provide support for the 'inside-out' theory of galaxy evolution, which holds that star formation starts at the core of the galaxy and spreads outward.
Evidence from NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer and Galaxy Evolution Explorer missions provide support for the 'inside-out' theory of galaxy evolution, which holds that star formation starts at the core of the galaxy and spreads outward.

Galaxies Grow from Inside Out

This artist's concept depicts a supermassive black hole at the center of a galaxy. NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer found evidence that black holes (once they grow to a critical size) stifle the formation of new stars in elliptical galaxies.
This artist's concept depicts a supermassive black hole at the center of a galaxy. NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer found evidence that black holes (once they grow to a critical size) stifle the formation of new stars in elliptical galaxies.

An Unwelcome Place for New Stars (artist concept)

This infographic explains how NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope can be used in tandem with a telescope on the ground to measure the distances to planets discovered using the 'microlensing' technique.
This infographic explains how NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope can be used in tandem with a telescope on the ground to measure the distances to planets discovered using the 'microlensing' technique.

Infographic: Finding Planets With Microlensing

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