A cosmic search for a missing arm… This image shows a dwarf galaxy, located about 30 million light-years away in the constellation of Canes Venatici (The Hunting Dogs). Taken by the Hubble Space Telescope (@NASAHubble ), the picture reveals the single major spiral arm of the galaxy, which gives it an asymmetric appearance.
But why is there only one such spiral arm, when spiral galaxies normally have at least two? Observations in the ultraviolet provided the first hint: in ultraviolet light the disk of the galaxy appears four times larger than on the image depicted here. An indication that there are a large number of very young and hot stars forming in the outer regions of the galaxy – only visible in the ultraviolet.
At first, astronomers assumed that this high star formation rate was being triggered by the interaction with another, nearby dwarf galaxy. They speculated this galactic neighbor may be the culprit, causing it to lose all but one spiral arm. In 2004 astronomers found proof for this claim. The gas in the outermost regions of the neighboring dwarf galaxy has been strongly affected by the galaxy in this image.
Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA
Can you identify this river? This image, taken by NASA astronaut Mark Vande Hei shows the beauty of planet Earth from his unique vantage point on the International Space Station (@iss ). He posted this to social media saying, “Can you identify this river? The views up here never get old, especially sun glinting off the water!”. Currently, there are six humans living and working on the orbiting laboratory where they conduct important science and research that will not only benefit life here on Earth, but will help us send humans deeper into the solar system than ever before.
One of eight massive rotating storms that appear as white ovals, christened the "String of Pearls," was recently captured on Oct. 24 in this stunning Juno spacecraft image of Jupiter. It shows the southern hemisphere of the gas giant planet. Since 1986, these colossal white ovals have varied in number from six to nine.
Since arriving at Jupiter on July 4, 2016, Juno has been on a mission of exploration where it soars low over the planet's cloud tops -- as close as about 2,100 miles (3,400 km). During these flybys, Juno is probing beneath the cloud cover of Jupiter and studying its auroras to learn more about the planet's origins, structure, atmosphere and magnetosphere.
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS/Gerald Eichstädt/ Seán Doran
What's up in the night skies this #November ? On Nov. 13 and 14, early risers all around the world will have a chance to see #Venus and #Jupiter together before dawn. At their closest on Monday morning, they will be about half the diameter of the full moon from each other.
This month, both Jupiter and Venus rise above the eastern horizon about an hour before the sun rises. You should be able to see the two planets about 5 degrees above the horizon a half hour later (5 degrees can be measured by holding three fingers of your outstretched hand to the horizon). Venus will be to the lower right of Jupiter on Monday, when they will be less than one finger length apart, and farther below Jupiter on the Tuesday.
Look with your binoculars, but take care not to aim on the horizon at the rising sun because you will damage your eyes. On Thursday, the moon will be visible above Jupiter in the dawn sky. A conjunction occurs when the apparent motion of one or both of two planets brings them into apparent proximity. In reality, since conjunctions are only from our perspective here on Earth, the objects are never really close to each other physically. You can make a conjunction by holding up your thumb near the moon in the sky: They look close together, but are really far apart.
LIFT OFF! The Orbital ATK Antares rocket, with the Cygnus spacecraft onboard, launches from Pad-0A at 7:19 a.m. EST on Sunday, Nov. 12, 2017 from our Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. The spacecraft is on its way to the International Space Station (@ISS ), set to rendezvous in two days.
This eighth cargo resupply mission by Orbital ATK (@Orbital_ATK ) to the International Space Station will deliver approximately 7,400 pounds of science and research, crew supplies and vehicle hardware to the orbiting laboratory and its crew.
Photo Credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls
'Twas the night before launch... Tomorrow morning at 7:37 a.m. EST, Orbital ATK (@OrbitalATK ) will launch its Cygnus spacecraft into orbit to the International Space Station (@ISS ) from our Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia.
This launch will deliver approximately 7,400 pounds of science and research, crew supplies and vehicle hardware to the orbital laboratory and its crew. Live NASA TV coverage and commentary will begin at 7 a.m. EST on our website at www.nasa.gov/live.
The launch window is open for about five minutes, while the journey from launch to orbit takes about nine minutes. Cygnus is then scheduled to rendezvous with the International Space Station on Nov. 13.
Photo Credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls
Throwback Thursday: On November 9, 1967, the uncrewed Apollo 4 test flight made a great ellipse around Earth as a test of the translunar motors and of the high speed entry required of a crewed flight returning from the Moon. A 70mm camera was programmed to look out a window toward Earth, and take a series of photographs from "high apogee." Seen looking west are coastal Brazil, the Atlantic Ocean, West Africa and Antarctica. This photograph was made as the Apollo 4 spacecraft orbited Earth at an altitude of 9,544 miles.
The Saturn/Apollo 4 mission was the first all-up test of the three stage Saturn V rocket. It carried the Apollo Command and Service Module into Earth orbit. The mission was designed to test all aspects of the Saturn V launch vehicle and return pictures of Earth. The mission was deemed successful and ushered in a golden era of space travel.
Photo Credit: NASA
Saturn’s icy moon Enceladus has geyser-like jets of water vapor that spew into space. Heat from friction could be their power-source, says a recent study that provided new insights into the warm interior of Saturn's geologically active moon.
Pictured here are the dramatic plumes, both large and small, that spray water ice out from many locations along the famed "tiger stripes" near the south pole of Enceladus. The tiger stripes are fissures that spray icy particles, water vapor and organic compounds. Individual jets of different sizes can be seen in this mosaic created from two high-resolution images that were captured by our Cassini spacecraft, when it flew past Enceladus and through the jets on Nov. 21, 2009.
While the Cassini spacecraft is gone, an enormous collection of data about Saturn – the giant planet, its magnetosphere, rings and moons – will continue to yield new discoveries for decades to come.
Credit: NASA/JPL/Space Science Institute
Jupiter’s intense northern and southern auroras present a pulsating polar puzzle to scientists, according to a new study using data from our Chandra X-ray and ESA's XMM-Newton observatories. Using these observations, a team of researchers produced maps of Jupiter's X-ray emissions and identified an X-ray hot spot at each pole that had very different characteristics. Swipe to see both poles of Jupiter.
The X-ray emission at Jupiter's south pole consistently pulsed every 11 minutes, but the X-rays seen from the north pole were erratic, increasing and decreasing in brightness — seemingly independent of the emission from the south pole. Each hot spot can cover an area equal to about half the surface of the Earth.
This makes Jupiter particularly puzzling. X-ray auroras have never been detected from our Solar System's other gas giants, including Saturn. Jupiter is also unlike Earth, where the auroras on our planet's north and south poles generally mirror each other because the magnetic fields are similar.
Credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/UCL/W.Dunn et al, Optical: South Pole: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS/Gerald Eichstädt /Seán Doran North Pole: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS