2nd Air Refueling Squadron refuels B-2's 161110-F-GV347-141.jpg

Preparing to refuel a B-2 Spirit.

Galaxy cluster Abell 2744

Humanity has "eyes" that can detect all different types of light through telescopes around the globe and a fleet of observatories in space. From radio waves to gamma rays, this "multiwavelength" approach to astronomy is crucial to getting a complete understanding of objects in space.

This image is of galaxy cluster Abell 2744. Galaxy clusters are the largest objects in the universe held together by gravity. They contain enormous amounts of superheated gas, with temperatures of tens of millions of degrees, which glows brightly in X-rays, and can be observed across millions of light years between the galaxies. This image combines X-rays from the Chandra X-Ray Observatory (diffuse blue emission) with optical light data from the Hubble Space Telescope (red, green, and blue).

See a selection of images of different kinds of light from various missions and telescopes have been combined to better understand the universe.

Image Credit: NASA/CXC; Optical: NASA/STScI

Source: www.nasa.gov

Cyclones at the north pole of Jupiter appear as swirls of striking colors in this extreme false color rendering of an image from NASA’s Juno mission. The huge, persistent cyclone found at Jupiter’s north pole is visible at the center of the image, encircled by smaller cyclones that range in size from 2,500 to 2,900 miles (4,000 to 4,600 kilometers). Together, this pattern of storms covers an area that would dwarf the Earth.

The color choices in this image reveal both the beauty of Jupiter and the subtle details present in Jupiter’s dynamic cloud structure. Each new observation that Juno provides of Jupiter’s atmosphere complements computer simulations and helps further refine our understanding of how the storms evolve over time.

The Juno mission provided the first clear views of Jupiter’s polar regions. Juno’s Jovian InfraRed Auroral Mapper (JIRAM) instrument has also mapped this area, as well as a similar pattern of storms at the planet’s south pole.

Citizen scientist Gerald Eichstädt made this composite image using data obtained by the JunoCam instrument during four of the Juno spacecraft’s close passes by Jupiter, which took place between Feb. 17, 2020, and July 25, 2020. The greatly exaggerated color is partially a result of combining many individual images to create this view.

JunoCam's raw images are available for the public to peruse and process into image products at https://missionjuno.swri.edu/junocam/processing.    

More information about Juno is at https://www.nasa.gov/juno and https://missionjuno.swri.edu.

Image data: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS

Image processing by Gerald Eichstädt

Source: www.nasa.gov
Ellen Ochoa

Then-NASA Johnson Space Center deputy director Ellen Ochoa poses for a photo with Robonaut 2 (R2) during media day in the Space Vehicle Mock-up Facility on Aug. 4, 2010. R2 hitched a ride to the International Space Station with the STS-133. It was the first humanoid robot to travel to space and the first U.S.-built robot to visit the station. R2 will stay on the space station indefinitely to allow engineers on the ground to learn more about how humanoid robots fare in microgravity.

Ochoa became Johnson Center director in 2012 and retired from that position in 2018. She is veteran of four space shuttle flights and holds a doctorate in electrical engineering from Stanford.


Image Credit: NASA

Source: www.nasa.gov
Moon Shadow Over Jupiter

Jupiter's volcanically active moon Io casts its shadow on the planet in this dramatic image from NASA's Juno spacecraft. As with solar eclipses on the Earth, within the dark circle racing across Jupiter's cloud tops one would witness a full solar eclipse as Io passes in front of the Sun.

Such events occur frequently on Jupiter because it is a large planet with many moons. In addition, unlike most other planets in our solar system, Jupiter's axis is not highly tilted relative to its orbit, so the Sun never strays far from Jupiter's equatorial plane (+/- 3 degrees). This means Jupiter's moons regularly cast their shadows on the planet throughout its year.

Juno's close proximity to Jupiter provides an exceptional fish-eye view, showing a small fraction near the planet's equator. The shadow is about 2,200 miles (3,600 kilometers) wide, approximately the same width as Io, but appears much larger relative to Jupiter.

A little larger than Earth's Moon, Io is perhaps most famous for its many active volcanoes, often caught lofting fountains of ejecta well above its thin atmosphere.

Citizen scientist Kevin M. Gill created this enhanced-color image using data from the spacecraft's JunoCam imager. The raw image was taken on Sept. 11, 2019 at 8:41 p.m. PDT (11:41 p.m. EDT) as the Juno spacecraft performed its 22nd close flyby of Jupiter. At the time the image was taken, the spacecraft was about 4,885 miles (7,862 kilometers) from the cloud tops at a latitude of 21 degrees.

JunoCam's raw images are available for the public to peruse and process into image products at: https://missionjuno.swri.edu/junocam/processing.

Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS/Kevin M. Gill (CC-BY) 

Source: www.nasa.gov
Frank Rubio

Dr. Frank Rubio was selected by NASA to join the 2017 Astronaut Candidate Class. He reported for duty in August 2017 and having completed the initial astronaut candidate training is now eligible for a mission assignment. The Florida native graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York, in 1998 and earned a Doctorate of Medicine from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in 2010. Prior to attending medical school, he served as a UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter pilot in the U.S. Army and flew more than 1,100 hours, including more than 600 hours of combat and imminent danger time during deployments to Bosnia, Afghanistan, and Iraq. Dr. Rubio is a board certified family physician and flight surgeon.

In this image, Rubio stands in the anechoic chamber, Wednesday, July 10, 2019 at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas. 


Image Credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls

Source: www.nasa.gov
Gene Kranz

Not every flight director is a legend, but some are. Take Eugene Kranz, for example. His heroic efforts saved the Apollo 13 mission from disaster. He also was an aerospace engineer, fighter pilot in the Korean War, and as Chief Flight Director, he directed missions from the Gemini and Apollo programs, including the first lunar landing mission, Apollo 11

He was also known for his white vests, all hand made by his wife Marta. One of those vests is now hanging in the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum.

Flight directors, like Kranz, are responsible for leading teams of flight controllers, research and engineering experts, and support personnel around the world, and making the real-time decisions critical to keeping NASA astronauts safe in space.

Currently, NASA is looking for leaders for one of the best jobs on Earth for human spaceflight – including missions to the Moon – the position of flight director in mission control at the agency’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. Today is the deadline for applications. Apply today!

Those chosen as NASA flight directors will lead human spaceflight missions to the International Space Station, as American astronauts once again are launching on American rockets and spacecraft from American soil to the orbiting laboratory.

Source: www.nasa.gov
Suomi NPP image of Creek Fire at night

This NOAA/NASA Suomi NPP satellite image from Sept. 7, 2020, shows the night band image of the Creek Fire at night as well as the smoke from the fire causing lights at night to diffuse or "bloom." NASA’s satellite instruments are often the first to detect wildfires burning in remote regions, and the locations of new fires are sent directly to land managers worldwide within hours of the satellite overpass. Together, NASA instruments detect actively burning fires, track the transport of smoke from fires, provide information for fire management, and map the extent of changes to ecosystems, based on the extent and severity of burn scars. NASA has a fleet of Earth-observing instruments, many of which contribute to our understanding of fire in the Earth system. Satellites in orbit around the poles provide observations of the entire planet several times per day, whereas satellites in a geostationary orbit provide coarse-resolution imagery of fires, smoke and clouds every five to 15 minutes. For more information visit: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/fires/main/missions/index.html.

Learn more at the Creek Fire

Image Credit: NOAA/NASA

Source: www.nasa.gov
A May 1995 story documented Oman's efforts at modernizing. Here, a Bedouin woman participates in an adult literacy class while her granddaughters look on.
American Flag Reflected in Roman's Primary Mirror

The Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope’s primary mirror, which will collect and focus light from cosmic objects near and far, has been completed. Using this mirror, Roman will capture stunning space vistas with a field of view 100 times greater than Hubble images.

Roman will peer through dust and across vast stretches of space and time to study the universe using infrared light, which human eyes can’t see. The amount of detail these observations will reveal is directly related to the size of the telescope’s mirror, since a larger surface gathers more light and measures finer features.

In this image, the Roman Space Telescope’s primary mirror reflects an American flag. 

Image Credit: L3Harris Technologies

Source: www.nasa.gov
Mars's Twin Peaks

NASA's Mars Pathfinder mission landed on the Red Planet on July 4, 1997. It's tiny rover, named Sojourner after abolitionist Sojourner Truth, spent 83 days of a planned seven-day mission exploring the Martian terrain, acquiring images, and taking chemical, atmospheric and other measurements. When the Mars Pathfinder spacecraft approached its destination, no NASA mission had successfully reached Mars in more than 20 years.The final data transmission received from Pathfinder was at 10:23 UTC on September 27, 1997. 

This image shows the Twin Peaks, which are modest-size hills to the southwest of the Mars Pathfinder landing site. They were discovered on the first panoramas taken by the IMP camera on the July 4, and subsequently identified in Viking Orbiter images taken more than 20 years before. The peaks are approximately 100 feet tall (30-35 meters). North Twin is approximately 860 meters (2800 feet) from the lander, and South Twin is about a kilometer away (3300 feet). The scene includes bouldery ridges and swales or "hummocks" of flood debris that range from a few tens of meters away from the lander to the distance of the South Twin Peak.

The composite color frames that make up this "right-eye" image consist of 7 frames, taken with different color filters that were enlarged by 500% and then co-added using Adobe Photoshop to produce, in effect, a super-resolution panchromatic frame that is sharper than an individual frame would be. This panchromatic frame was then colorized with the red, green, and blue filtered images from the same sequence. The color balance was adjusted to approximate the true color of Mars.

Lear more: Why No One Under 20 Has Experienced a Day Without NASA at Mars

Image Credit: NASA/JPL

Source: www.nasa.gov
Gerald Carr

Skylab 4 Commander Gerald P. Carr is fully suited as he prepares to enter spacecraft 118 (the Skylab 4 vehicle) at the start of a high altitude chamber test at the Kennedy Space Center in this image from Aug. 6, 1973. Also participating in the test were scientist-astronaut Edward G. Gibson, science pilot, and astronaut William R. Pogue, pilot. The Skylab 4 spacecraft was moved to the Vehicle Assembly Building on Aug. 12, where it was mated with the launch vehicle.

Carr passed away on Aug. 26, 2020. “NASA and the nation have lost a pioneer of long duration spaceflight," said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine. Read the statement.  

See this TED-Ed animation, narrated by Carr, as he discussed his life as an astronaut.

Image Credit: NASA

Source: www.nasa.gov
gold-hued, veil-like strands against black backdrop of space: a small section of Cygnus supernova blast wave as seen by Hubble

While appearing as a delicate and light veil draped across the sky, this image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope actually depicts a small section of the Cygnus supernova blast wave, located around 2,400 light-years away. The name of the supernova remnant comes from its position in the northern constellation of Cygnus (the Swan), where it covers an area 36 times larger than the full Moon. 

The original supernova explosion blasted apart a dying star about 20 times more massive than our Sun between 10,000 and 20,000 years ago. Since then, the remnant has expanded 60 light-years from its center. The shockwave marks the outer edge of the supernova remnant and continues to expand at around 220 miles per second. The interaction of the ejected material and the low-density interstellar material swept up by the shockwave forms the distinctive veil-like structure seen in this image.

Text credit: ESA (European Space Agency)
Image credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA, W. Blair; acknowledgment: Leo Shatz

Source: www.nasa.gov
A mosaic by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope of the Cepheus C and Cepheus B regions

In this large celestial mosaic taken by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope and published in 2019, there's a lot to see, including multiple clusters of stars born from the same dense clumps of gas and dust. Some of these clusters are older than others and more evolved, making this a generational stellar portrait. This image is of the Cepheus C and Cepheus B regions and combines data from Spitzer's IRAC and MIPS instruments.

The grand green-and-orange delta filling most of the image is a faraway nebula, or a cloud of gas and dust in space. Though the cloud may appear to flow from the bright white spot at its tip, it is actually what remains of a much larger cloud that has been carved away by radiation from stars. The bright region is illuminated by massive stars, belonging to a cluster that extends above the white spot. The white color is the combination of four colors (blue, green, orange and red), each representing a different wavelength of infrared light, which is invisible to human eyes. Dust that has been heated by the stars' radiation creates the surrounding red glow.

Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Source: www.nasa.gov

What does this Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope Spirograph have in common with Women's Equality Day?

The Fermi mission is run by Project Scientist Dr. Elizabeth Hays, one of many female scientists and leaders at NASA. Hays and her deputy, Dr. Judith Racusin, are astrophysicists in the Astrophysics Science Division of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. They provide scientific guidance and interface with scientist, engineers, and the public. Also part of the Fermi team are Mission Director Beth Pumphrey, and the Gamma-ray Burst monitor Principle Investigator, Dr. Colleen Wilson-Hodge.

NASA has been at the forefront of women in STEM (science, technology engineering and math) since the agency's beginnings. Our fiirst Chief Scientist was Dr. Nancy Grace Roman (who now has a telescope named in her honor). NASA's headquarters in Washington, DC is being renamed for one of our legendary 'hdden figures' mathematician Mary W. Jackson. For more than 60 years, the agency has recognised the talents and contributions of women. On this, the 100th anniversary of Women's Equality Day, we're celebrating the many contributions of women in the sciences. Watch the celebration on NASA TV, Aug. 26 at 3 p.m. ET.

This image show how NASA's Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope  as it orbits our planet every 95 minutes, builds increasingly deeper views of the universe with every circuit. The image compresses eight individual frames, from a movie showing 51 months of position and exposure data by Fermi's Large Area Telescope (LAT), into a single snapshot. The pattern reflects numerous motions of the spacecraft, including its orbit around Earth, the precession of its orbital plane, the manner in which the LAT nods north and south on alternate orbits, and more.

This represents the position and exposure for one particular source, the Vela Pulsar. The image is from the perspective of the LAT so that viewers can imagine themselves as the telescope watching the sky and seeing this source flying in and out your view over time.

Image Credit: NASA/DOE/Fermi LAT Collaboration

Source: www.nasa.gov
Artist’s impression shows a view of the surface of the planet Proxima b orbiting the red dwarf star Proxima Centauri

Discovered in 2016, a roughly Earth-sized planet orbiting our nearest neighboring star might be habitable, according to astronomers using the European Southern Observatory's 3.6-meter telescope at La Silla, Chile, along with other telescopes around the world. The exoplanet is at a distance from its star that allows temperatures mild enough for liquid water to pool on its surface.

This artist’s impression shows a view of the surface of the planet Proxima b orbiting the red dwarf star Proxima Centauri, the closest star to the solar system. The double star Alpha Centauri AB also appears in the image. Proxima b is a little more massive than the Earth and orbits in the habitable zone around Proxima Centauri, where the temperature is suitable for liquid water to exist on its surface.

Image Credit: ESO/M. Kornmesser

Source: www.nasa.gov
One of the radiation detectors for the Radi-N2 experiment floats in the space station.

In this image, one of the radiation detectors for the Radi-N2 experiment floats in the space station. This device will help researchers explore the radition risk to humans in space.

Neutrons make up a significant part of the radiation exposure in low-Earth orbit, but have not been well characterized. Radi-N2, a Canadian Space Agency investigation, uses bubble detectors to better characterize the neutron environment on the space station, helping to define the risk it poses to crew members. It continues a previous investigation, Radi-N1, and repeats measurements in the same or equivalent locations aboard the space station. Measuring the average dose in different segments of the space station supports development of a radiation protection plan for future missions. During the week of Aug. 17, 2020, crew members retrieved detectors for collection of dose measurements.

Image Credit: NASA

Source: www.nasa.gov
Hurricane Genevieve off the Pacific coast of Mexico

The crew aboard the International Space Station spotted Hurricane Genevieve off Mexico's Pacific coast on Aug. 19, 2020.

NASA's Suomi NPP satellite also kept an eye on Hurricane Genevieve overnight and provided infrared imagery to forecasters who were monitoring the storm’s strength, structure and size. Because Genevieve is close to the coast of western Mexico, warnings and watches were still in effect.

Image Credit: NASA

Source: www.nasa.gov
Image from supercomputing simulation of NASA's X-57 electric aircraft in flight

We're celebrating  National Aviation Day! After all, we are the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. Aviation and aeronautics are as much a part of our mission as space travel.

This artist rendering is of the X-57 “Maxwell” electric experimental aircraft. Just as electric cars are becoming more and more commonplace on our roads each day, aerospace engineers are seeking to make electric air transportation a reality. In pursuit of that goal, NASA is developing its first crewed X-plane in more than 20 years. Compared with conventional aircraft, the X-57 team has set a goal of using five times less energy and – if powered by electricity generated from renewable sources – producing zero inflight carbon emissions.

The X-57’s unique propulsion system, in its final configuration, features 14 battery-powered electric motors and propellers: 12 to provide lift during takeoff and landing, and one at the tip of each wing to provide forward thrust during flight. In order to understand the aerodynamic effects of this design, a team of engineers from three NASA centers – Ames Research Center in California’s Silicon Valley, Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia, and Armstrong Flight Research Center in Edwards, California – is using supercomputers to simulate flight conditions for the X-57.

The moment simulated here is from the cruise phase of flight, with pressure shown on the aircraft surface (maroon: high pressure, dark blue: low pressure) and streamwise velocity, or the speed and direction of air flowing toward the aircraft, near the X-57’s rightmost propeller (top left of image; red: high velocity, green/blue: lower velocities).

These simulations help the team analyze the aircraft’s stability and its ability to stay in flight and change direction and will also allow them to create an accurate computer model of aerodynamic performance to incorporate into the X-57 flight simulator.

By accurately predicting the impacts of the X-57’s propulsion system, the aerodynamic model ensures that its flight simulator performs in a manner consistent with actual flight and lets pilots test emergency scenarios and safe recovery measures. Run on the Pleiades supercomputer at the NASA Advanced Supercomputing facility at Ames, the simulations are helping take the next step toward a cleaner way to fly.

Image Credit: NASA/Ames Research Center/J. Duensing
Text Credit: Michelle Moyer, NASA Advanced Supercomputing Division

Source: www.nasa.gov
Avalanche on Mars

Hi-RISE, the High-Resolution Imaging Science Experiment camera aboard NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) captured this avalanche plunging down a 1,640-foot-tall (500-meter-tall) cliff on May 29, 2019. The image also reveals layers at Mars' north pole during spring. As temperatures increase and vaporize ice, the destabilized ice blocks break loose and kick up dust.

Learn more as we mark the 15th anniversary since the launch of MRO, one of the oldest spacecraft at the Red Planet, which has provided glimpses of dust devils, avalanches, and more.

Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona

Source: www.nasa.gov
Expedition 63 Commander Chris Cassidy during weekend housekeeping

We all have to do our housekeeping chores, even when we command the crew aboard the International Space Station. This past weekend, NASA astronaut and Expedition 63 Commander Chris Cassidy was no exception as he collected trash for disposal during weekend housekeeping activities.

Image Credit: NASA

Source: www.nasa.gov