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NASA Goddard  The official Instagram account of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. Twitter: @NASAGoddard & @NASAGoddardPix

Hubble Catches a Spiral Galaxy in Disguise
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Resembling a wizard’s staff set aglow, NGC 1032 cleaves the quiet darkness of space in two in this image from @NASAHubble.
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NGC 1032 is located about a hundred million light-years away in the constellation Cetus (the Sea Monster). Although beautiful, this image perhaps does not do justice to the galaxy’s true aesthetic appeal: NGC 1032 is actually a spectacular spiral galaxy, but from Earth, the galaxy’s vast disk of gas, dust and stars is seen nearly edge-on.
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A handful of other galaxies can be seen lurking in the background, scattered around the narrow strip of NGC 1032. Many are oriented face-on or at tilted angles, showing off their glamorous spiral arms and bright cores. Such orientations provide a wealth of detail about the arms and their nuclei, but fully understanding a galaxy’s three-dimensional structure also requires an edge-on view. This gives astronomers an overall idea of how stars are distributed throughout the galaxy and allows them to measure the “height” of the disk and the bright star-studded core.

Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA

These two stars orbit each other every 38 minutes, less than the amount of time it takes to stream an episode of your favorite TV drama. It’s the fastest-known orbit for this kind of binary star system, where a rapidly spinning, very dense star called a pulsar pulls material away from a lighter companion star. In the visualization you can see that the two stars in this system (called IGR J17062-6143) are closer to each other than Earth is to the Moon! Scientists were able to confirm the new record using NASA’s Neutron star Interior Composition Explorer (NICER) aboard the International Space Station.
#nasagoddard #space #spacetelescope #star #universe #science #binarystars #pulsar #spacestation #iss #nicer #neutronstar #stars #xrays #orbit

Image from space captures clear skies for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's royal wedding day.
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NASA’s Terra satellite captured clear skies over London, England, today, Saturday, May 19, the day of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's royal wedding day.
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This natural-color satellite image was collected by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument that flies aboard the Terra satellite. The image shows mostly clear skies over London and allowed MODIS a nearly unobstructed view of the site of the royal wedding.
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According to Met Office, the UK's national weather service, an area of high pressure over the North Sea will bring largely dry and mild conditions to the United Kingdom on Saturday, May 19, 2018.
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Credit: NASA/Goddard/MODIS/Terra #nasagoddard #RoyalWedding #London #UK #MeghanMarkle #PrinceHarry

Operation IceBridge, NASA’s longest-running airborne mission to monitor polar ice change, concluded this year’s springtime survey of Arctic sea and land ice on May 2. The flights, which began on March 22, covered the western basin of the Arctic Ocean and Greenland’s fastest-changing glaciers.
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This image was taken during a research flight carried out on April 21 near Vestfjord Glacier in Scoresby Sund, along the eastern coast of Greenland. The photo shows a large iceberg that has broken the surrounding layer of consolidated sea ice. Flat floes of sea ice with fresh snow on top, areas of open water that are beginning to refreeze and neighboring smaller icebergs are visible.
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The mission of Operation IceBridge is to collect data on changing polar land and sea ice and maintain continuity of measurements between NASA’s ICESat missions. The original ICESat mission launched in 2003 and ended in 2009, and its successor, ICESat-2, is scheduled for launch in September 2018. Operation IceBridge began in 2009 and is currently funded until 2020.
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Credit: NASA/Linette Boisvert #nasagoddard #science #ice #snow #Greenland #arctic #sea #ocean #glacier

For #TeacherAppreciationWeek, we’re taking time to #ThankATeacher! “I grew up in a small, rural town in Arkansas with my sights set on the stars. MANY of my teachers had a role in inspiring me to chase my dreams!” - Amber Straughn (@astraughnomer), NASA Astrophysicist

Credit: NASA Goddard #nasagoddard #TeacherAppreciationDay

Don't worry, that's not a monster in the depths of space. That odd, twisted and smeared light is just a product of a giant galaxy cluster with monstrous gravitational influence located some three billion light-years away.
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Though the bright, light-speckled foreground galaxy in the lower left is eye-catching, it is far from the most intriguing object in this NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image. In the upper part of the frame, the light from distant galaxies has been smeared and twisted into odd shapes, arcs and streaks. This phenomenon indicates the presence of a giant galaxy cluster, which is bending the light coming from the galaxies behind it with its monstrous gravitational influence.
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This cluster, called SDSS J0150+2725, lies some three billion light-years away and was first documented by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS), hence its name. The SDSS uses a 2.5-meter optical telescope located at the Apache Point Observatory in New Mexico to observe millions of objects and create detailed 3-D maps of the universe. This particular cluster was part of the Sloan Giant Arcs Survey (SGAS), which detected galaxy clusters with strong lensing properties; their gravity stretches and warps the light of more distant galaxies sitting behind them, creating weird and spectacular arcs such as those seen here.
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Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA, Acknowledgment: Judy Schmidt #nasagoddard #space #science #hubble #galaxy #monster #photooftheday

Tangled up in blue ☀️💙
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The lone active region visible on the Sun on April 24-26 put on a fine display, with tangled magnetic field lines swaying and twisting above it.
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Active regions are areas of intense and complex magnetic fields on the Sun that are often associated with solar eruptions, though this region has not erupted with any significant solar storms while on the Earth-facing side of the Sun.
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Seen in extreme ultraviolet light by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, the magnetic field lines above the active region are traced out by the charged particles spinning along them. Extreme ultraviolet light is typically invisible to our eyes but is colorized here in teal.
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Credit: NASA/Goddard/SDO nasa.gov/sdo #nasagoddard #space #science #sun #beautiful #blue #imageoftheday

On the morning of Tuesday, April 17, crews from United Launch Alliance raised the 170-foot tall Delta IV Heavy launch vehicle – the largest and most powerful rocket currently used by @NASA – at Launch Complex 37 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. This Delta IV Heavy will carry Parker #SolarProbe, humanity’s first mission to the Sun’s corona, on its journey to explore the Sun’s atmosphere and the solar wind.
The launch vehicle consists of three Common Booster Cores, with a second stage on the center core; the encapsulated spacecraft, is scheduled to arrive in early July for integration onto the rocket. The spacecraft is now at Astrotech Space Operations in nearby Titusville undergoing final integration and testing.
Launch is scheduled for approximately 4 a.m. EDT on July 31, 2018. Parker Solar Probe will be the fastest human-made object in the solar system, traveling at speeds of up to 430,000 miles per hour (700,000 kilometers per hour). Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins APL/Ed Whitman #nasagoddard #space #sun #science #CapeCanaveral #rocket

#OldHeadshotDay This NASA image was taken on April 1, 1960, by the TIROS 1 satellite and was the first television picture of Earth from space.
The Television InfraRed Observational Satellite (TIROS) 1 was the first weather satellite. Launched into a polar orbit 40 years ago (April 1, 1960) equipped with two TV cameras, TIROS 1 was operational for only 78 days but demonstrated the feasibility of monitoring planet Earth's cloud cover and weather patterns from space. TIROS satellites eventually began continuous coverage in 1962 and enabled accurate worldwide weather forecasts and alerts. This image is the first TIROS TV image, taken from an altitude of about 700 kilometers. Crude by contemporary standards, it represents the beginning of what is still one of the most important continuing applications of space technology. Credit: NASA #nasagoddard #space #earth #science #oldheadshotday

Happy Earth Day from @NASAGoddard!

Spring arrived in the United States on March 20, but that did not stop a winter storm from dropping snow across the Upper Midwest a month later. On April 19, the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on the Terra satellite captured this image of the snow dropped by the storm.

Credit: NASA images by Jeff Schmaltz, LANCE/EOSDIS Rapid Response #nasagoddard #earth #snow #spring

The Tasmania Fire Service webpage shows that all fires captured in this Aqua image from April 20, 2018 are, in fact, fires deliberately set for land management. This is a very important part of making sure that vast swaths of land don't burn during a lightning strike. In order to guard against this, firefighters take out areas of scrub, dead grasses, underbrush, and other flammable detritus so that if the area is hit by lightning or someone carelessly starts a fire, that fire does not get out of control quickly using that detritus as kindling for exacerbating the fire. .
In fact prescribed fires are actually used for more than just fire management. These fires help in these ways:
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After many years of fire exclusion, an ecosystem that needs periodic fire becomes unhealthy. Trees are stressed by overcrowding; fire-dependent species disappear; and flammable fuels build up and become hazardous. The right fire at the right place at the right time:
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Reduces hazardous fuels, protecting human communities from extreme fires; minimizes the spread of pest insects and disease; removes unwanted species that threaten species native to an ecosystem; provides forage for game; improves habitat for threatened and endangered species; recycles nutrients back to the soil; and promotes the growth of trees, wildflowers, and other plants;
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This image was captured by NASA's Aqua satellite using the MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) instrument onboard on April 20, 2018. Actively burning areas, detected by MODIS’s thermal bands, are outlined in red. .
NASA image courtesy Jeff Schmaltz LANCE/EOSDIS MODIS Rapid Response Team, GSFC #nasagoddard #fire #Tasmania #earth

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