Epic Space Photos of the Week (March 28-April 4)
A Soyuz VS07 rocket launched the ESA’s Sentinel-1A satellite from Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana, on April 3. Sentinel-1A is the first of a radar imaging Earth-observation satellite constellation called the Copernicus program.
Shortly after launch, the ESA Sentinel-1A satellite transmitted this photo from orbit of its solar array and Earth below.
On March 29, the sun unleashed a powerful X-class solar flare that bathed Earth's upper atmosphere in extreme-ultraviolet radiation. This caused widespread ionization, knocking out global radio communications for a short time.
A space station astronaut photographed this view while the outpost was over northeastern Kazakhstan -- a green auroral glow fills the scene.
Japanese astronaut and space station Commander Koichi Wakata plays with some fresh fruit that was delivered by the recent Soyuz spacecraft arrival.
NASA/JPL-Caltech/Space Science Institute
A high-resolution view of Enceladus' vast "tiger stripes" (fissures that vent salty water ice known to contain organic compounds) etched into the moon's south pole as observed by the Cassini mission. This week scientists announced the discovery of a subsurface ocean in the small moon's crust.
NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona
The HiRISE camera aboard NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter imaged a distinctive flow deposit southwest of Cerberus Fossae on Mars. Scientists have now revealed that the feature may have been identified as an ancient mud flow.
The Milky Way hangs above the ESO's Paranal Observatory, Chile, in this stunning photo from the ESO Ultra HD Expedition, a documentary by four world-renowned videographers and ESO Photo Ambassadors.
This new image from the MPG/ESO 2.2-metre telescope at ESO’s La Silla Observatory in Chile shows a contrasting pair of galaxies: NGC 1316, and its smaller companion NGC 1317 (right). Astronomers believe that NGC 1316 has a cannibalistic past having snacked on smaller galaxies billions of years ago.
NASA, ESA, and J. Jee (University of California, Davis)
The largest known galactic cluster in the Universe, ACT-CL J0102-4915, just got bigger, thanks to new measurements by the Hubble Space Telescope. The galactic cluster, nicknamed "El Gordo" (Spanish for "the fat one") has a mass of 3 million billion suns.