sun and stars
Stars, Planets, and Galaxies
A Quasar is an enormously bright object at the edge of our universe with the appearance of a star when viewed through a telescope. It emits massive amounts of energy, more energy than 100 normal galaxies combined. The name comes from a shortening of quasi-stellar radio source (QSR). Current theories hold that quasars are one type of active galactic nuclei (AGN). Many astronomers believe supermassive black holes may lie at the center of these galaxies and power their explosive energy output.
Storm Cell Over the Southern Appalachian Mountains
This storm cell photo was taken from NASA's high-altitude ER-2 aircraft on May 23, 2014, during a study aimed at gaining a better understanding of precipitation over mountainous terrain. The Integrated Precipitation and Hydrology Experiment, or IPHEx, field campaign is part of the ground validation effort for the Global Precipitation Measurement (GPM) mission, an international satellite mission led by NASA and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency.
Springtime in the Gulf of Alaska
The image shows the southern Alaska coast and the Gulf of Alaska on May 2, 2014. It is a composite knitted together from several orbits of the Aqua satellite. Two comma-shaped cloud formations (image center and far left) dominate the skies over the North Pacific Ocean. These clouds were likely moving around and ahead of a low-pressure system, showing some cyclonic circulation. Dark green traces of a phytoplankton bloom are just visible off of the Alaska coast at top center.
A thin green line of the aurora borealis (northern lights) crosses the top of this photograph, taken by an astronaut on the International Space Station. The moon appears as a white disc just above the aurora. Airglow appears as a blue-white cusp along the Earth’s limb. Russia’s capital city, Moscow, makes a splash of yellow light and is easily recognized by the radial pattern of its highways.