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A star's spectacular death in the constellation Taurus was observed on Earth as the supernova of 1054 A.D. This composite image uses data from three of NASA's Great Observatories. The Chandra X-ray, Hubble Space, and Spitzer Space Telescope.
A star's spectacular death in the constellation Taurus was observed on Earth as the supernova of 1054 A.D. This composite image uses data from three of NASA's Great Observatories. The Chandra X-ray, Hubble Space, and Spitzer Space Telescope.

Dead Star Creates Celestial Havoc

This still from an artist's animation flies through the Kepler-20 star system, where NASA's Kepler mission discovered the first Earth-size planets around a star beyond our own. The system is jam-packed with five planets.
This still from an artist's animation flies through the Kepler-20 star system, where NASA's Kepler mission discovered the first Earth-size planets around a star beyond our own. The system is jam-packed with five planets.

An Unusual Planetary System (Artist's Concept)

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

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

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

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 photograph from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows the young star cluster NGC 2362. By studying it, astronomers found that gas giant planet formation happens very rapidly and efficiently, within less than 5 million years.
This photograph from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows the young star cluster NGC 2362. By studying it, astronomers found that gas giant planet formation happens very rapidly and efficiently, within less than 5 million years.

Baby Jupiters Must Gain Weight Fast

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

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)

When astronomers first looked at images of a supernova remnant called Cassiopeia A, captured by NASA's NuSTAR. The mystery of Cassiopeia A (Cas A), a massive star that exploded in a supernova more than 11,000 years ago continues to confound scientists.
When astronomers first looked at images of a supernova remnant called Cassiopeia A, captured by NASA's NuSTAR. The mystery of Cassiopeia A (Cas A), a massive star that exploded in a supernova more than 11,000 years ago continues to confound scientists.

The Case of Missing Iron in Cassiopeia A

This graphic illuminates the process by which astronomers using NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope have, for the first time, detected the light from a super Earth planet.
This graphic illuminates the process by which astronomers using NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope have, for the first time, detected the light from a super Earth planet.

Measuring Brightness of Super Earth 55 Cancri e

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 illustration shows a cool star, called W1906+40, marked by a raging storm near one of its poles. The storm is thought to be similar to the Great Red Spot on Jupiter. Scientists discovered it using NASA's Kepler and Spitzer space telescopes.
This illustration shows a cool star, called W1906+40, marked by a raging storm near one of its poles. The storm is thought to be similar to the Great Red Spot on Jupiter. Scientists discovered it using NASA's Kepler and Spitzer space telescopes.

Cool Star Marked by Long-Lived Storm (Artist's Concept)

The magnetic field of our Milky Way galaxy as seen by ESA's Planck satellite. This image was compiled from the first all-sky observations of polarized light emitted by interstellar dust in the Milky Way.
The magnetic field of our Milky Way galaxy as seen by ESA's Planck satellite. This image was compiled from the first all-sky observations of polarized light emitted by interstellar dust in the Milky Way.

Magnetic Map of Milky Way

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

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

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