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Rising from a sea of dust and gas like a giant seahorse, the Horsehead nebula is one of the most photographed objects in the sky. NASA's Hubble Space Telescope took a close-up look at this heavenly icon, revealing the cloud's intricate structure.
Rising from a sea of dust and gas like a giant seahorse, the Horsehead nebula is one of the most photographed objects in the sky. NASA's Hubble Space Telescope took a close-up look at this heavenly icon, revealing the cloud's intricate structure.

Horsehead Nebula

One of Planck's first images is shown as a strip superimposed over a two dimensional projection of the whole sky as seen in visible light.
One of Planck's first images is shown as a strip superimposed over a two dimensional projection of the whole sky as seen in visible light.

Planck's First Glimpse at the Universe

Two young binary stars may be the source of mysterious clock-like bursts of light from an object called LRLL 54361 that lies inside the star-forming region IC 348, located 950 light-years away.
Two young binary stars may be the source of mysterious clock-like bursts of light from an object called LRLL 54361 that lies inside the star-forming region IC 348, located 950 light-years away.

Artist's Impression of Pulsating Object LRLL 54361

NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer highlights the Small Magellanic Cloud, a small galaxy about 200,000 light-years away. Located in the constellation Tucana, the Small Magellanic Cloud looks like a wispy cloud encircling the south celestial pole.
NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer highlights the Small Magellanic Cloud, a small galaxy about 200,000 light-years away. Located in the constellation Tucana, the Small Magellanic Cloud looks like a wispy cloud encircling the south celestial pole.

WISE's View of a Wispy Cloud

This illustration depicts a brown dwarf. NASA's Spitzer and Swift missions observed a microlensing event as the star passed between Earth and a much more distant star in our galaxy.
This illustration depicts a brown dwarf. NASA's Spitzer and Swift missions observed a microlensing event as the star passed between Earth and a much more distant star in our galaxy.

Brown Dwarf Microlensing (Illustration)

The Sculptor galaxy, or NGC 253, is seen in a rainbow of infrared colors in this mosaic by NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer. The Sculptor galaxy can be seen by observers in the southern hemisphere with a pair of good binoculars.
The Sculptor galaxy, or NGC 253, is seen in a rainbow of infrared colors in this mosaic by NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer. The Sculptor galaxy can be seen by observers in the southern hemisphere with a pair of good binoculars.

The Many Infrared 'Personalities' of the Sculptor Galaxy

NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer has uncovered the coldest brown dwarf known so far (green dot in very center of this infrared image). WISE 1828+2650 is located in the constellation Lyra. The blue dots are a mix of stars and galaxies.
NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer has uncovered the coldest brown dwarf known so far (green dot in very center of this infrared image). WISE 1828+2650 is located in the constellation Lyra. The blue dots are a mix of stars and galaxies.

Reigning Title-Holder for Coldest Brown Dwarf

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

This artist's concept shows what the TRAPPIST-1 planetary system may look like from a vantage point near planet TRAPPIST-1f (at right).
This artist's concept shows what the TRAPPIST-1 planetary system may look like from a vantage point near planet TRAPPIST-1f (at right).

TRAPPIST-1 System - Artist Concept

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 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

Three of the TRAPPIST-1 planets dwell in their star's so-called 'habitable zone,' shown in green. This is the band around the star where temperatures are just right, not too hot, not too cold, for liquid water to pool on the surface of an Earth-like world
Three of the TRAPPIST-1 planets dwell in their star's so-called 'habitable zone,' shown in green. This is the band around the star where temperatures are just right, not too hot, not too cold, for liquid water to pool on the surface of an Earth-like world

The TRAPPIST-1 Habitable Zone

This large mosaic image from NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, features the wreckage of an exploded star, as well as other stars nearing the end of their lives.
This large mosaic image from NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, features the wreckage of an exploded star, as well as other stars nearing the end of their lives.

Beyond the Veil

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 plot of data from two space telescopes, NASA's NuSTAR and ESA's XMM-Newton determines for the first time the shape of ultra-fast winds from supermassive black holes, or quasars.
This plot of data from two space telescopes, NASA's NuSTAR and ESA's XMM-Newton determines for the first time the shape of ultra-fast winds from supermassive black holes, or quasars.

The Answer is Blowing in the Black Hole Wind

This illustration shows a red dwarf star orbited by a hypothetical exoplanet. By mining data from NASA's GALEX spacecraft, a team of astronomers identified dozens of flares at a range of durations and strengths.
This illustration shows a red dwarf star orbited by a hypothetical exoplanet. By mining data from NASA's GALEX spacecraft, a team of astronomers identified dozens of flares at a range of durations and strengths.

Flaring Red Dwarf Star (Illustration)

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

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