Amazing Space Photos of the Week (July 28 - Aug. 4)
International Space Station astronauts had quite a show as they flew over Southern California in July 21 -- between the light pollution (yellow light) of Los Angeles and San Diego, lightning flashed intermittently (white blotch) in the dark storm clouds.
NASA astronaut Karen Nyberg tweeted (@AstroKarenN) this incredible photo from orbit on Aug. 4 of a sun and moon rise over the Earth's limb.
But it's not just excellent photo opportunities for Nyberg. Here's the Expedition 36 flight engineer working with the InSPACE-3 experiment in the Microgravity Science Glovebox (MSG) in the Destiny laboratory of the International Space Station. InSPACE-3 applies different magnetic fields to vials of colloids, or liquids with microscopic particles, and observes how fluids can behave like a solid. Results may improve the strength and design of materials for stronger buildings and bridges.
NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute
In research published this week, scientists have deduced that the tidal squeezing on the icy moon Encleladus by gas giant Saturn powers the diminutive moon's famous jets of water ice.
Possibly breaking the record for altitude record for a radio controlled hexacopter, this aerial photograph of the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) in the extreme environment of the Atacama Desert in Chile shows just how chilly it can get. The array of ALMA dishes stand out in the snow.
A. Read (University of Leicester)/ESA
Bright strips of X-ray data record the slew history of ESA’s XMM-Newton as it moves its focus between different objects in the sky. The image contains information of over 1200 individual slews made between 2001 and 2012, and covers about 62 percent of the sky.
On Aug. 1, a NASA meteor camera at the Marshall Space Flight Center spotted a brilliant Capricornid meteor as it streaked over Alabama.
On Aug. 5/6 (PT/ET), NASA's Mars Science Laboratory will celebrate one year since rover Curiosity landed on the red planet. This is a section of a stunning panorama inside Gale Crater as Curiosity makes its way to Mount Sharp.
In the ancient cratered southern highlands of Mars, the faint traces of a wet past are seen in the form of channels (lower center), fluidized debris around craters (bottom right) and blocks of eroded sediments (top left). Volcanic activity may have deposited the fine dusting of dark material visible in the top left. This observation was captured by the European Mars Express orbiter.