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@nasa

Explore the universe and discover our home planet with the official NASA Instagram account

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1d ago
@nasa
Although beautiful, this image from the Hubble Space Telescope (@NASAHubble) does not do justice to this galaxy’s true appeal: it is actually a spectacular spiral galaxy! From Earth, the galaxy’s vast disk of gas, dust and stars is seen nearly edge-on, flat like a pancake. 
Located about a hundred million light-years away in the constellation Cetus (the Sea Monster), this spiral galaxy is not the only one seen here. A handful of other galaxies can be seen lurking in the background, scattered around the narrow strip the main galaxy. Many are oriented face-on or at tilted angles, showing off their glamorous spiral arms and bright cores. Such orientations provide a wealth of detail about the arms and their nuclei, but fully understanding a galaxy’s three-dimensional structure also requires an edge-on view. This gives astronomers an overall idea of how stars are distributed throughout the galaxy and allows them to measure the “height” of the disk and the bright star-studded core.

Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA
#nasa #space #hubble #spothubble #galaxy #universe #solarsystem #bright #stars #lightyears #science #pictureoftheday #spiral #flat #galaxies #picoftheday
Although beautiful, this image from the Hubble Space Telescope (@NASAHubble) does not do justice to this galaxy’s true appeal: it is actually a spectacular spiral galaxy! From Earth, the galaxy’s vast disk of gas, dust and stars is seen nearly edge-on, flat like a pancake. Located about a hundred million light-years away in the constellation Cetus (the Sea Monster), this spiral galaxy is not the only one seen here. A handful of other galaxies can be seen lurking in the background, scattered around the narrow strip the main galaxy. Many are oriented face-on or at tilted angles, showing off their glamorous spiral arms and bright cores. Such orientations provide a wealth of detail about the arms and their nuclei, but fully understanding a galaxy’s three-dimensional structure also requires an edge-on view. This gives astronomers an overall idea of how stars are distributed throughout the galaxy and allows them to measure the “height” of the disk and the bright star-studded core. Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA #nasa#space#hubble#spothubble#galaxy#universe#solarsystem#bright#stars#lightyears#science#pictureoftheday#spiral#flat#galaxies#picoftheday
531450 likes 2169 comments
2d ago
@nasa
Special Delivery! After launching early Monday morning, Orbital ATK's (@Orbital_ATK) Cygnus cargo craft arrived at the International Space Station (@ISS) this morning. The spacecraft was successfully captured using the station’s robotic arm, seen here in a photo shared by Astronaut Ricky Arnold (@Astro_Ricky). Following capture, robotic ground controllers positioned and installed Cygnus to the orbiting laboratory’s Earth-facing port of the Unity module. The spacecraft delivers supplies and scientific investigations including those that will study microbiology, physics, materials science, plant biology, liquid separation and more.

Cygnus will spend about seven weeks attached to the space station before departing in July. After it leaves the station, the uncrewed spacecraft will deploy several CubeSats before its fiery re-entry into Earth’s atmosphere as it disposes of several tons of trash.

Image credit: NASA/@Astro_Ricky
#nasa #orbitalatk #earth #international #space #station #cargo #cygnus #nasa #spacestation #internationalspacestation #research #cargocraft #science #technology #picofthday #antares #supplies #delivery
Special Delivery! After launching early Monday morning, Orbital ATK's (@Orbital_ATK) Cygnus cargo craft arrived at the International Space Station (@ISS) this morning. The spacecraft was successfully captured using the station’s robotic arm, seen here in a photo shared by Astronaut Ricky Arnold (@Astro_Ricky). Following capture, robotic ground controllers positioned and installed Cygnus to the orbiting laboratory’s Earth-facing port of the Unity module. The spacecraft delivers supplies and scientific investigations including those that will study microbiology, physics, materials science, plant biology, liquid separation and more. Cygnus will spend about seven weeks attached to the space station before departing in July. After it leaves the station, the uncrewed spacecraft will deploy several CubeSats before its fiery re-entry into Earth’s atmosphere as it disposes of several tons of trash. Image credit: NASA/@Astro_Ricky#nasa#orbitalatk#earth#international#space#station#cargo#cygnus#nasa#spacestation#internationalspacestation#research#cargocraft#science#technology#picofthday#antares#supplies#delivery
256090 likes 748 comments
3d ago
@nasa
A new day, a new, extraordinary perspective. Here's a unique view of Jupiter and its iconic red spot, courtesy of our Juno spacecraft’s 12th close flyby of the gas giant planet on April 1. This view from the south is unique to Juno and demonstrates how different our view is when we step off the Earth and experience the true nature of our three-dimensional universe.

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. 
Image Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS/Gerald Eichstäd/Seán Doran
#nasa #space #juno #jupiter #gasgiant #planet #clouds #swirling #pattern #solarsystem #science #spacecraft #pictureoftheday #astronomy #storm #greatredspot #red #redspot
A new day, a new, extraordinary perspective. Here's a unique view of Jupiter and its iconic red spot, courtesy of our Juno spacecraft’s 12th close flyby of the gas giant planet on April 1. This view from the south is unique to Juno and demonstrates how different our view is when we step off the Earth and experience the true nature of our three-dimensional universe. 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. Image Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS/Gerald Eichstäd/Seán Doran #nasa#space#juno#jupiter#gasgiant#planet#clouds#swirling#pattern#solarsystem#science#spacecraft#pictureoftheday#astronomy#storm#greatredspot#red#redspot
459562 likes 2329 comments
4d ago
@nasa
A duo of twin satellites have launched on a big Earth mission! Our GRACE Follow-On mission launched onboard a SpaceX (@SpaceX) Falcon 9 rocket today, May 22 at 3:47 p.m. EDT, from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. GRACE-FO will study changes in Earth’s 💎ice sheets, 💦groundwater storage, 💥quake-shifted land, and 🌊ocean currents. GRACE-FO shared its ride to orbit with five Iridium NEXT communications satellites as part of a commercial rideshare agreement with the German Research Centre for Geosciences.

Changes in how mass is distributed within and between Earth’s atmosphere, oceans, groundwater and ice sheets are fundamental indicators of the large-scale dynamics of the planet. For more than 15 years, our Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) mission monitored mass changes every month with far-reaching impact on our understanding of the Earth system and how it is evolving. GRACE Follow-On continues the legacy of GRACE, tracking Earth’s water movement and surface mass changes across the planet. Monitoring changes in ice sheets and glaciers, near-surface and underground water storage, the amount of water in large lakes and rivers, as well as changes in sea level and ocean currents provides an integrated global view of how Earth’s water cycle and energy balance are evolving—measurements that have important applications for everyday life.

Swipe to see a timelapse image of launch and other launch images.

Photo Credits: NASA/Bill Ingalls
#space #rocket #rocketlaunch #launch #liftoff #vandenberg #vafb #gracefollowon #earth #science #earthscience #nasa #jpl #nasajpl #gracefo
A duo of twin satellites have launched on a big Earth mission! Our GRACE Follow-On mission launched onboard a SpaceX (@SpaceX) Falcon 9 rocket today, May 22 at 3:47 p.m. EDT, from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. GRACE-FO will study changes in Earth’s 💎ice sheets, 💦groundwater storage, 💥quake-shifted land, and 🌊ocean currents. GRACE-FO shared its ride to orbit with five Iridium NEXT communications satellites as part of a commercial rideshare agreement with the German Research Centre for Geosciences. Changes in how mass is distributed within and between Earth’s atmosphere, oceans, groundwater and ice sheets are fundamental indicators of the large-scale dynamics of the planet. For more than 15 years, our Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) mission monitored mass changes every month with far-reaching impact on our understanding of the Earth system and how it is evolving. GRACE Follow-On continues the legacy of GRACE, tracking Earth’s water movement and surface mass changes across the planet. Monitoring changes in ice sheets and glaciers, near-surface and underground water storage, the amount of water in large lakes and rivers, as well as changes in sea level and ocean currents provides an integrated global view of how Earth’s water cycle and energy balance are evolving—measurements that have important applications for everyday life. Swipe to see a timelapse image of launch and other launch images. Photo Credits: NASA/Bill Ingalls #space#rocket#rocketlaunch#launch#liftoff#vandenberg#vafb#gracefollowon#earth#science#earthscience#nasa#jpl#nasajpl#gracefo
776756 likes 2848 comments
5d ago
@nasa
LIFTOFF! Orbital ATK’s Antares rocket carrying the Cygnus cargo spacecraft lifted off at 4:44 a.m. EDT from our Wallops Flight Facility (@NASAWallops) in Virginia. It is on its way to the International Space Station (@ISS). Cygnus is carrying about 7,400 pounds of supplies and payloads, including critical materials to directly support dozens of the more than 250 science and research investigations for the orbital laboratory and its crew. 
Photo Credit: NASA/Aubrey Gemignani
#nasa #cygnus #antares #orbitalatk #launch #rocketlaunch #science #space #rocket #rocketscience #fire #picoftheday #pictureoftheday #wallops #nasawallops #liftoff
LIFTOFF! Orbital ATK’s Antares rocket carrying the Cygnus cargo spacecraft lifted off at 4:44 a.m. EDT from our Wallops Flight Facility (@NASAWallops) in Virginia. It is on its way to the International Space Station (@ISS). Cygnus is carrying about 7,400 pounds of supplies and payloads, including critical materials to directly support dozens of the more than 250 science and research investigations for the orbital laboratory and its crew. Photo Credit: NASA/Aubrey Gemignani #nasa#cygnus#antares#orbitalatk#launch#rocketlaunch#science#space#rocket#rocketscience#fire#picoftheday#pictureoftheday#wallops#nasawallops#liftoff
256966 likes 654 comments
6d ago
@nasa
‘Twas the night before launch and Orbital ATK’s #Antares rocket with the #Cygnus spacecraft perched on top, sits ready on the launch pad for tomorrow’s 4:39 a.m. EDT liftoff. Packed with around 7,400 pounds of science experiments, food and supplies, this marks Orbital ATK’s ninth contracted cargo delivery flight to the International Space Station (@iss). Orbiting 250 miles above Earth, the space station has had a continuous human presence since the year 2000, and is currently home to six astronauts. While onboard, crew members conduct important scientific research that will not only pave the way for humans to travel deeper into the solar system than ever before, but also has benefits to life here on Earth. 
Credit: NASA/Aubrey Gemignani

#nasa #space #spacestation #launch #cargo #supplies #science #liftoff #rocket #earth #humans #astronaut #resupply #launchpad #wallops #nasawallops #wallopsisland #pictureoftheday
‘Twas the night before launch and Orbital ATK’s #Antares rocket with the #Cygnus spacecraft perched on top, sits ready on the launch pad for tomorrow’s 4:39 a.m. EDT liftoff. Packed with around 7,400 pounds of science experiments, food and supplies, this marks Orbital ATK’s ninth contracted cargo delivery flight to the International Space Station (@iss). Orbiting 250 miles above Earth, the space station has had a continuous human presence since the year 2000, and is currently home to six astronauts. While onboard, crew members conduct important scientific research that will not only pave the way for humans to travel deeper into the solar system than ever before, but also has benefits to life here on Earth. Credit: NASA/Aubrey Gemignani #nasa#space#spacestation#launch#cargo#supplies#science#liftoff#rocket#earth#humans#astronaut#resupply#launchpad#wallops#nasawallops#wallopsisland#pictureoftheday
260681 likes 625 comments
7d ago
@nasa
Behold: see galaxies like never before! Astronomers have used the unparalleled sharpness & spectral range of the Hubble Space Telescope (@NASAHubble) to create the most comprehensive, high-resolution ultraviolet-light look at nearby star-forming galaxies. 
The researchers combined new Hubble observations with archival Hubble images for 50 star-forming spiral and dwarf galaxies in the local universe, offering a large and extensive resource for understanding the complexities of star formation and galaxy evolution. The project, called the Legacy ExtraGalactic UV Survey (LEGUS), has amassed star catalogs for each of the LEGUS galaxies and cluster catalogs for 30 of the galaxies, as well as images of the galaxies themselves. The data provide detailed information on young, massive stars and star clusters, and how their environment affects their development.

Seen here is a look at one of the galaxies included in the LEGUS survey. It is a spiral galaxy located in the Canes Venatici constellation about 20 million light-years away from Earth. 
Image credit: NASA, ESA, and the LEGUS team
#nasa #space #hubble #spothubble #telescope #galaxy #lightyears #beautiful #pictureoftheday #science #astronomy #pretty #legus
Behold: see galaxies like never before! Astronomers have used the unparalleled sharpness & spectral range of the Hubble Space Telescope (@NASAHubble) to create the most comprehensive, high-resolution ultraviolet-light look at nearby star-forming galaxies. The researchers combined new Hubble observations with archival Hubble images for 50 star-forming spiral and dwarf galaxies in the local universe, offering a large and extensive resource for understanding the complexities of star formation and galaxy evolution. The project, called the Legacy ExtraGalactic UV Survey (LEGUS), has amassed star catalogs for each of the LEGUS galaxies and cluster catalogs for 30 of the galaxies, as well as images of the galaxies themselves. The data provide detailed information on young, massive stars and star clusters, and how their environment affects their development. Seen here is a look at one of the galaxies included in the LEGUS survey. It is a spiral galaxy located in the Canes Venatici constellation about 20 million light-years away from Earth. Image credit: NASA, ESA, and the LEGUS team #nasa#space#hubble#spothubble#telescope#galaxy#lightyears#beautiful#pictureoftheday#science#astronomy#pretty#legus
708459 likes 2442 comments
8d ago
@nasa
Play
A powerful X-ray pulsar is whipping around its stellar partner at a record-breaking speed! These two stars orbit each other every 38 minutes, less than the amount of time it takes to stream an episode of your favorite tv sitcom. It’s the fastest-known orbit for this kind of binary star system, where a rapidly spinning, very dense star called a pulsar pulls material away from a lighter companion star. In this visualization you can see that the two stars in this system are closer to each other than Earth is to the Moon! Scientists were able to confirm the new record using our Neutron star Interior Composition Explorer aboard the International Space Station (@ISS). Credit: @NASAGoddard 
#nasa #space #spacetelescope #star #universe #science #binarystars #pulsar #spacestation #iss #nicer #neutronstar #stars #xrays #orbit #space
A powerful X-ray pulsar is whipping around its stellar partner at a record-breaking speed! These two stars orbit each other every 38 minutes, less than the amount of time it takes to stream an episode of your favorite tv sitcom. It’s the fastest-known orbit for this kind of binary star system, where a rapidly spinning, very dense star called a pulsar pulls material away from a lighter companion star. In this visualization you can see that the two stars in this system are closer to each other than Earth is to the Moon! Scientists were able to confirm the new record using our Neutron star Interior Composition Explorer aboard the International Space Station (@ISS). Credit: @NASAGoddard#nasa#space#spacetelescope#star#universe#science#binarystars#pulsar#spacestation#iss#nicer#neutronstar#stars#xrays#orbit#space
235085 likes 1942 comments
9d ago
@nasa
Imagine taking in breathtaking views of the Earth below you while experiencing a sunrise and sunset every 90 minutes. Astronaut Ricky Arnold (@astro_ricky) experienced that mind-blowing workday as he performed a 6.5 hour spacewalk yesterday and captured this selfie. Alongside fellow spacewalker Drew Feustel (@astro_feustel), Arnold finished upgrading cooling system hardware and installed new and updated communications equipment for future dockings of commercial crew spacecraft. Spacewalkers have now spent a total of 54 days, 16 hours and 40 minutes working outside the International Space Station (@ISS) in support of assembly and maintenance of the orbiting laboratory.

Credit: NASA

#nasa #spacewalk #astronaut #views #earth #space #spacestation #science #solarsystem #picoftheday
Imagine taking in breathtaking views of the Earth below you while experiencing a sunrise and sunset every 90 minutes. Astronaut Ricky Arnold (@astro_ricky) experienced that mind-blowing workday as he performed a 6.5 hour spacewalk yesterday and captured this selfie. Alongside fellow spacewalker Drew Feustel (@astro_feustel), Arnold finished upgrading cooling system hardware and installed new and updated communications equipment for future dockings of commercial crew spacecraft. Spacewalkers have now spent a total of 54 days, 16 hours and 40 minutes working outside the International Space Station (@ISS) in support of assembly and maintenance of the orbiting laboratory. Credit: NASA #nasa#spacewalk#astronaut#views#earth#space#spacestation#science#solarsystem#picoftheday
459834 likes 1971 comments
10d ago
@nasa
This natural-color image of the erupting Kilauea volcano in Hawaii shows the aftermath of lava fountains and explosions that rose more than 100 feet into the air on May 14. Our satellites acquire data to measure the height of volcanic plumes and make observations about the properties of the particles found within the plumes. In this image, the areas appearing red show where our satellite detected unusually warm temperatures associated with lava, while recent lava flows appear gray, forested areas are dark green and homes are small white dots. We will continue to use satellite data to understand Kilauea’s geology and behavior.

Credit: NASA/Joshua Stevens/@USGS 
#nasa #science #volcano #kilauea #hawaii #earth #landsat #picoftheday #greenisland #earthview #views #satellite #lava #explosion #erupt #data
This natural-color image of the erupting Kilauea volcano in Hawaii shows the aftermath of lava fountains and explosions that rose more than 100 feet into the air on May 14. Our satellites acquire data to measure the height of volcanic plumes and make observations about the properties of the particles found within the plumes. In this image, the areas appearing red show where our satellite detected unusually warm temperatures associated with lava, while recent lava flows appear gray, forested areas are dark green and homes are small white dots. We will continue to use satellite data to understand Kilauea’s geology and behavior. Credit: NASA/Joshua Stevens/@USGS#nasa#science#volcano#kilauea#hawaii#earth#landsat#picoftheday#greenisland#earthview#views#satellite#lava#explosion#erupt#data
379790 likes 1371 comments
11d ago
@nasa
Each and every day, our Solar Dynamics Observatory satellite collects data about our brightest star☀️. Our satellite helps researchers understand the Sun's influence on Earth and Near-Earth space by studying the solar atmosphere on small scales of space and time and in many wavelengths simultaneously. 
This image of the sun, taken today, combines images in three wavelengths of extreme ultraviolet light. Each different wavelength of extreme ultraviolet light present in the Sun's corona correlates to material of different temperatures, resulting sometimes in completely different views of the same Sun. Scientists examine the combined images to reveal the solar atmosphere in all its detail.

To learn more about how we study solar activity, visit: www.nasa.gov/sdo 
Credit: NASA/Solar Dynamics Observatory

#nasa #space #sun #solar #light #earth #solarsystem #science #video #ultraviolet #uv #uvlight #picoftheday #views #shinebright
Each and every day, our Solar Dynamics Observatory satellite collects data about our brightest star☀️. Our satellite helps researchers understand the Sun's influence on Earth and Near-Earth space by studying the solar atmosphere on small scales of space and time and in many wavelengths simultaneously. This image of the sun, taken today, combines images in three wavelengths of extreme ultraviolet light. Each different wavelength of extreme ultraviolet light present in the Sun's corona correlates to material of different temperatures, resulting sometimes in completely different views of the same Sun. Scientists examine the combined images to reveal the solar atmosphere in all its detail. To learn more about how we study solar activity, visit: www.nasa.gov/sdo Credit: NASA/Solar Dynamics Observatory #nasa#space#sun#solar#light#earth#solarsystem#science#video#ultraviolet#uv#uvlight#picoftheday#views#shinebright
422631 likes 1602 comments
12d ago
@nasa
Scientists found independent evidence that Europa’s subsurface liquid water reservoir may be venting plumes of water vapor above its icy shell when our Galileo mission collected data on the moon in 1997.

New analysis of old data brings new insights to the question of whether Jupiter’s icy moon Europa has the ingredients to support life. Scientists found independent evidence that Europa’s subsurface liquid water reservoir may be venting plumes of water vapor above its icy shell when our Galileo mission collected data on the moon in 1997.

Taken by our Galileo spacecraft in the late 1990s, this image shows the puzzling, fascinating surface of Europa. Long, linear cracks and ridges crisscross the surface, interrupted by regions of disrupted terrain where the surface ice crust has been broken up and re-frozen into new patterns.

Areas that appear blue or white contain relatively pure water ice, while reddish and brownish areas include non-ice components in higher concentrations. The polarregions, visible at the left and right of this view, are noticeably bluer than the more equatorial latitudes, which look more white. This color variation is thought to be due to differences in ice grain size in the two locations.

During our Europa Clipper mission, which may launch as early as June 2022, we will learn more about whether Europa has those necessary ingredients that could support life. 
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SETI Institute

#nasa #space #jupiter #solarsystem #pictureoftheday #moons #astronomical #astrophoto #icy #planetary
Scientists found independent evidence that Europa’s subsurface liquid water reservoir may be venting plumes of water vapor above its icy shell when our Galileo mission collected data on the moon in 1997. New analysis of old data brings new insights to the question of whether Jupiter’s icy moon Europa has the ingredients to support life. Scientists found independent evidence that Europa’s subsurface liquid water reservoir may be venting plumes of water vapor above its icy shell when our Galileo mission collected data on the moon in 1997. Taken by our Galileo spacecraft in the late 1990s, this image shows the puzzling, fascinating surface of Europa. Long, linear cracks and ridges crisscross the surface, interrupted by regions of disrupted terrain where the surface ice crust has been broken up and re-frozen into new patterns. Areas that appear blue or white contain relatively pure water ice, while reddish and brownish areas include non-ice components in higher concentrations. The polarregions, visible at the left and right of this view, are noticeably bluer than the more equatorial latitudes, which look more white. This color variation is thought to be due to differences in ice grain size in the two locations. During our Europa Clipper mission, which may launch as early as June 2022, we will learn more about whether Europa has those necessary ingredients that could support life. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SETI Institute #nasa#space#jupiter#solarsystem#pictureoftheday#moons#astronomical#astrophoto#icy#planetary
452166 likes 1732 comments