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Panoramic view from the Hagener Hütte at the mountain pass Niederer Tauern near Mallnitz (Carinthia) towards Naßfeld Valley, High Tauern National Park, federal state of Salzburg

Slide 1 of 100: Graduates of the United States Military Academy toss their hats into the air at the conclusion of commencement ceremonies in West Point, New York, U.S., May 27, 2017.

Graduates of the United States Military Academy toss their hats into the air at the conclusion of commencement ceremonies in West Point, New York, U.S., May 27, 2017.

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Making salt by evaporation of sea water near Ninh Hòa town, Khánh Hòa Province Vietnam.

Slide 1 of 99: Riot security forces take cover during a rally against Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro in Caracas, Venezuela, May 26, 2017. REUTERS/Christian Veron TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY.

Riot security forces take cover during a rally against Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro in Caracas, Venezuela, May 26, 2017. REUTERS/Christian Veron TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY.

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Interior of St. Isaac's Cathedral in Saint Petersburg, Russia

Closeup of circular optics with black light above

A new NASA mission, the Neutron Star Interior Composition Explorer (NICER), is headed for the International Space Station next month to observe one of the strangest observable objects in the universe. Launching aboard SpaceX's CRS-11 commercial resupply mission, NICER will be installed aboard the orbiting laboratory as the first mission dedicated to studying neutron stars, a type of collapsed star that is so dense scientists are unsure how matter behaves deep inside it.

In this photo, NICER’s X-ray concentrator optics are inspected under a black light for dust and foreign object debris that could impair functionality once in space. The payload’s 56 mirror assemblies concentrate X-rays onto silicon detectors to gather data that will probe the interior makeup of neutron stars, including those that appear to flash regularly, called pulsars.

The Neutron star Interior Composition Explorer (NICER) is a NASA Explorer Mission of Opportunity dedicated to studying the extraordinary environments — strong gravity, ultra-dense matter, and the most powerful magnetic fields in the universe — embodied by neutron stars. An attached payload aboard the International Space Station, NICER will deploy an instrument with unique capabilities for timing and spectroscopy of fast X-ray brightness fluctuations. The embedded Station Explorer for X-ray Timing and Navigation Technology demonstration (SEXTANT) will use NICER data to validate, for the first time in space, technology that exploits pulsars as natural navigation beacons.

More: New NASA Mission to Study Mysterious Neutron Stars, Aid in Deep Space Navigation

Image Credit: NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center/Keith Gendreau


Source: www.nasa.gov
Slide 1 of 98: A soldier from the 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment (Old Guard) takes part in

A soldier from the 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment (Old Guard) takes part in "Flags-in", where a flag is placed at each of the 284,000 headstones at Arlington National Cemetery ahead of Memorial Day, in Arlington, Virginia, U.S., May 25, 2017. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

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The church St. Marinus und Anian, Wilparting (Irschenberg), Bavaria, as seen from the north.

Juno telecon image

This sequence of enhanced-color images shows how quickly the viewing geometry changes for NASA’s Juno spacecraft as it swoops by Jupiter. The images were obtained by JunoCam.

Once every 53 days the Juno spacecraft swings close to Jupiter, speeding over its clouds. In just two hours, the spacecraft travels from a perch over Jupiter’s north pole through its closest approach (perijove), then passes over the south pole on its way back out. This sequence shows 14 enhanced-color images.

The first image on the left shows the entire half-lit globe of Jupiter, with the north pole approximately in the center. As the spacecraft gets closer to Jupiter, the horizon moves in and the range of visible latitudes shrinks. The third and fourth images in this sequence show the north polar region rotating away from our view while a band of wavy clouds at northern mid-latitudes comes into view. By the fifth image of the sequence the band of turbulent clouds is nicely centered in the image. The seventh and eighth images were taken just before the spacecraft was at its closest point to Jupiter, near Jupiter’s equator. Even though these two pictures were taken just four minutes apart, the view is changing quickly.

As the spacecraft crossed into the southern hemisphere, the bright “south tropical zone” dominates the ninth, 10th and 11th images. The white ovals in a feature nicknamed Jupiter’s “String of Pearls” are visible in the 12th and 13th images. In the 14th image Juno views Jupiter’s south poles.

Image Credit: NASA/SWRI/MSSS/Gerald Eichstädt/Seán Doran


Source: www.nasa.gov
Slide 1 of 97: LAMPEDUSA, ITALY - MAY 24: A rescue crewmember from the Migrant Offshore Aid Station (MOAS) 'Phoenix' vessel reaches out to pull a man into a rescue craft after a wooden boat bound for Italy carrying more than 500 people partially capsized on May 24, 2017 off Lampedusa, Italy. The Migrant Offshore Aid Station (MOAS) 'Phoenix' vessel rescued 603 people after one of three wooden boats partially capsized leaving more than 30 people dead. Numbers of refugees and migrants attempting the dangerous central Mediterranean crossing from Libya to Italy has risen since the same time last year with more than 43,000 people recorded so far in 2017. In an attempt to slow the flow of migrants Italy recently signed a deal with Libya, Chad and Niger outlining a plan to increase border controls and add new reception centers in the African nations, which are key transit points for migrants heading to Italy. MOAS is a Malta based NGO dedicated to providing professional search-and-rescue assistance to refugees and migrants in distress at sea. Since the start of the year MOAS have rescued and assisted 3572 people and are currently patrolling and running rescue operations in international waters off the coast of Libya. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)

LAMPEDUSA, ITALY - MAY 24: A rescue crewmember from the Migrant Offshore Aid Station (MOAS) 'Phoenix' vessel reaches out to pull a man into a rescue craft after a wooden boat bound for Italy carrying more than 500 people partially capsized on May 24, 2017 off Lampedusa, Italy. The Migrant Offshore Aid Station (MOAS) 'Phoenix' vessel rescued 603 people after one of three wooden boats partially capsized leaving more than 30 people dead. Numbers of refugees and migrants attempting the dangerous central Mediterranean crossing from Libya to Italy has risen since the same time last year with more than 43,000 people recorded so far in 2017. In an attempt to slow the flow of migrants Italy recently signed a deal with Libya, Chad and Niger outlining a plan to increase border controls and add new reception centers in the African nations, which are key transit points for migrants heading to Italy. MOAS is a Malta based NGO dedicated to providing professional search-and-rescue assistance to refugees and migrants in distress at sea. Since the start of the year MOAS have rescued and assisted 3572 people and are currently patrolling and running rescue operations in international waters off the coast of Libya. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)

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Flying over the Philippine Sea, an astronaut looked toward the horizon from the International Space Station and shot this photograph of three-dimensional clouds, the thin blue envelope of the atmosphere, and the blackness of space.The late afternoon sun brightens a broad swath of the sea surface on the right side of the image. In the distance towards the horizon, a region-wide layer of clouds mostly obscures islands in the northern Philippines (at image top right). Looking toward the sun to capture an image is a special technique used by astronauts to accentuate the three dimensions of landscapes and cloudscapes due to shadows cast by these features. Two large thunderclouds rise next to one another (at image lower right). These have long tails, also known as anvils from their shape, that stretch nearly 100 km to the south. Anvils form when thunderstorm clouds rise high into the atmosphere and reach a “capping layer,” often thousands of meters (tens of thousands of feet) above sea level. Capping layers stop the upward growth of a cloud, deflecting air currents horizontally to form anvils.

Scott Carpenter in spacesuit walks out of building toward launch site

Astronaut Scott Carpenter walks to the launch site to begin the Mercury-Atlas 7 (MA-7) mission on May 24, 1962. Carpenter's Aurora 7 capsule lifted off aboard an Atlas rocket from Cape Canaveral, Florida, at 7:45 a.m. EST, May 24. Carpenter was the fourth American in space and second American to orbit Earth. During the four-hour, 54-minute flight, he tested the spacecraft and conducted scientific experiments and observations of the airglow layer of the atmosphere, and photographed terrestrial features.

"The sunrises and sunsets were the most beautiful and spectacular events of the flight," he said. "Unlike those on Earth, the sunrises and sunsets in orbit were the same. The sharply defined bands of color at the horizon were brilliant."

After three orbits, Aurora 7 splashed down in the Atlantic Ocean about 250 miles past its targeted landing point. Carpenter was hoisted aboard a Navy helicopter which flew him to the aircraft carrier USS Intrepid, where he spoke with President John F. Kennedy via radio-telephone.  

Photo Credit: NASA


Source: www.nasa.gov
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Pareronia hippia, female.

NASA’s Mars 2020 Rover artist’s concept

This artist's concept depicts NASA's Mars 2020 rover on the surface of Mars.

The mission takes the next step by not only seeking signs of habitable conditions on Mars in the ancient past, but also searching for signs of past microbial life itself.

The Mars 2020 rover introduces a drill that can collect core samples of the most promising rocks and soils and set them aside on the surface of Mars. A future mission could potentially return these samples to Earth. 

Mars 2020 is targeted for launch in July/August 2020, aboard an Atlas V 541 rocket from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.

NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory will build and manage operations of the Mars 2020 rover for the NASA Science Mission Directorate at the agency's headquarters in Washington.

For more information about the mission, go to: https://mars.nasa.gov/mars2020/ 

Image Credit:  NASA/JPL-Caltech


Source: www.nasa.gov
Slide 1 of 105: A man is dwarfed as he walks past The Broad museum on Monday, May 22, 2017, in downtown Los Angeles. The contemporary art museum was founded by philanthropist Eli Broad in 2015. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

A man is dwarfed as he walks past The Broad museum on Monday, May 22, 2017, in downtown Los Angeles. The contemporary art museum was founded by philanthropist Eli Broad in 2015. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

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Landscape in the Aucanquilcha Hill with the Olca volcano, a 5,167 metres (16,952 ft) high stratovolcano, in the background, Antofagasta Region, Alto Loa National Reserve, northern Chile and just west of the border with Bolivia.

Slide 1 of 104: Altar boys wait to see Pope Francis outside the church of the Parish of San Pier Damiani at Casal Bernocchi on the southern outskirts of Rome, Italy May 21, 2017. REUTERS/Remo Casilli TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

Altar boys wait to see Pope Francis outside the church of the Parish of San Pier Damiani at Casal Bernocchi on the southern outskirts of Rome, Italy May 21, 2017. REUTERS/Remo Casilli TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

Enceladus

The low angle of sunlight along the slim crescent of Saturn's moon Enceladus (313 miles or 504 kilometers across) highlights the many fractures and furrows on its icy surface.

This view looks toward the Saturn-facing hemisphere of Enceladus, which is dimly illuminated in the image above by sunlight reflected off Saturn. North on Enceladus is up and rotated 14 degrees to the left. The image was taken in visible light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on Dec. 26, 2016.

The view was obtained at a distance of approximately 104,000 miles (168,000 kilometers) from Enceladus. Image scale is 3,303 feet (1 kilometer) per pixel.

The Cassini mission is a cooperative project of NASA, ESA (the European Space Agency) and the Italian Space Agency. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the mission for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington. The Cassini orbiter and its two onboard cameras were designed, developed and assembled at JPL. The imaging operations center is based at the Space Science Institute in Boulder, Colorado.

For more information about the Cassini-Huygens mission visit https://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov and http://www.nasa.gov/cassini . The Cassini imaging team homepage is at http://ciclops.org .

Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute


Source: www.nasa.gov
Lago de Como, Italia, 2016-06-25, DD 02-06 PAN.jpg

Panoramic view of Lake Como, a lake of glacial origin located in Lombardy, Italy. With 146 square kilometres (56 sq mi) it is the third largest in the country, and is over 400 metres (1,300 ft) deep, one of the deepest in Europe. The area is a popular retreat for aristocrats and wealthy people since Roman times.

Slide 1 of 103: Newlywed couples attend a group wedding ceremony in traditional Han Dynasty style in Ganzhou, China on May 20, 2017. Many Chinese choose to register for marriage or hold wedding ceremonies on May 20 because the pronunciation of the number

Newlywed couples attend a group wedding ceremony in traditional Han Dynasty style in Ganzhou, China on May 20, 2017. Many Chinese choose to register for marriage or hold wedding ceremonies on May 20 because the pronunciation of the number "520" is similar to that of "I Love You" in Chinese. Stringer/Reuters

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Satellite-based view of the Arctic. The record lowest minimum ever observed in the satellite record occurred on September 16, 2012, when sea ice plummeted to 3.41 million square kilometers (1.32 million square miles). This image shows the area two weeks earlier. The edges of the ice pack are reasonably visible, as are some fractured areas. But some details are obscured by clouds.