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The 33 Most Iconic NASA Images Of 2014


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1. NASA rocket launched through an aurora over Venetie, Alaska.

"he Ground-to-Rocket Electrodynamics – Electron Correlative Experiment (GREECE) sounding rocket mission, which launched from Poker Flat Research Range in Poker Flat, Alaska, will study classic curls in the aurora in the night sky."

2. The view from John Hopkins Physics Balloon Observation Platform for Planetary Sciences.

"This photo was created from 100 separate 30-second-exposure photos, composited together to make the star trail that "spins" around Polaris, the North Star."

3. The Milky Way ghosting over the Sahara desert.

Taken from the ISS.

4. Hurricane Gonzalo from the International Space Station.

Oct 16th, 2014.

5. Jupiter's moon Europa as it would appear to the human eye.

"Newly reprocessed color view made from images taken by NASA's Galileo spacecraft in the late 1990s."

6. Our sun emitting a significant solar flare in October.

7. The "Climate Dance" of plankton in the Bering Sea.

"This Sept. 22, 2014, image was created with Landsat 8 data."

8. The Mars Curiosity rover drills into Mars Mountain.

"This image from the Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) camera on NASA's Curiosity Mars rover shows the first sample-collection hole drilled in Mount Sharp, the layered mountain that is the science destination of the rover's extended mission."

9. A starry night view from the ISS.

10. The first glimpse of "Sparky" in the earliest stages of massive galaxy construction.

"Although only a fraction of the size of the Milky Way, the tiny powerhouse galactic core already contains about twice as many stars as our own galaxy, all crammed into a region only 6,000 light-years across. The Milky Way is about 100,000 light-years across."

11. Night view of Florida and Louisiana.

12. The Holuhraun lava field in Iceland.

"On Sept. 6, the Operational Land Imager (OLI) on Landsat 8 captured this view of the ongoing eruption. The false-color images combine shortwave infrared, near infrared, and green light (OLI bands 6-5-3)."

13. The ISS flying through the Aurora Borealis towards sunrise.

According to Astronaut Reid Wiseman, it was like "flying through huge loops of light."

14. Russian comsonauts Oleg Artemyev and Alexander Skvortsov on a spacewalk.

15. A supernova explodes.

"On Jan. 21, 2014, astronomers witnessed a supernova soon after it exploded in the Messier 82, or M82, galaxy. This image contains Chandra X-Ray Observatory data, where low, medium, and high-energy X-rays are red, green, and blue respectively. "

16. The Rosetta Orbiter successfully lands on a comet.

"This image, taken by Rosetta’s Onboard Scientific Imaging System (OSIRIS) on August 6, 2014, shows close up detail of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, focusing on a smooth region on the ‘base’ of the ‘body’ section of the comet. The image clearly shows a range of features, including boulders, craters and steep cliffs. The image was taken from a distance of 80 miles."

17. Alaska in summer.

"A digital camera on NASA’s ER-2 airplane captured this top-down view of a melt pond atop a glacier in southeastern Alaska on July 16, 2014. Chunks of ice float on the pond’s turquoise water."

18. The Caribbean Sea.

"From the Earth-orbiting International Space Station, flying some 225 nautical miles above the Caribbean Sea in the early morning hours of July 15, NASA astronaut Reid Wiseman photographed this north-looking panorama that includes parts of Cuba, the Bahamas and Florida, and even runs into several other areas in the southeastern U.S."

19. Cygnus Space Craft launch in Virginia.

"The crowd watches as the Orbital Sciences Corporation Antares rocket launches from Pad-0A with the Cygnus spacecraft onboard. The Cygnus spacecraft is filled with over 3,000 pounds of supplies for the International Space Station, including science experiments, experiment hardware, spare parts, and crew provisions."

20. The launch gantry is rolled back to reveal the United Launch Alliance Delta II rocket.

"[The rocket which has] the Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 (OCO-2) satellite onboard will measure the global distribution of carbon dioxide, the leading human-produced greenhouse gas driving changes in Earth’s climate."

21. Curiosity selfie!

"Our Curiosity Mars rover used the camera at the end of its arm in April and May 2014 to take dozens of component images combined into this self-portrait where the rover drilled into a sandstone target called 'Windjana.' The view does not include the rover's arm."

22. Sunrise over the Earth's horizon.

23. Inside the ISS as astronauts sleep.

"The dots near the hatch point to a Soyuz spacecraft docked to the station in case the crew was to encounter an emergency. This view is looking into the Destiny Laboratory from Node 1 (Unity) with Node 2 (Harmony) in the background. Destiny is the primary research laboratory for U.S. payloads, supporting a wide range of experiments and studies."

24. Soyuz rocket launch in Kazakhstan.

The Soyuz safely carried Soyuz Commander Maxim Suraev of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos), Flight Engineer Alexander Gerst of the European Space Agency (ESA), and Flight Engineer Reid Wiseman of NASA to the ISS to begin Expedition 40.

25. "Coyote Head Nebula Does Not Approve."

"This image is a tiny snippet of the vast 20 gigapixel GLIMPSE360 panorama released in March 2014. Visitors were encouraged to use the web viewers on the Spitzer site to search through the data and then share and name their findings on Twitter. This region was tweeted by kevinmgill, who tagged it 'Nebula Does Not Approve.'"

26. "It's A Small World" by the crew members of ISS Expedition 39.

"Commander Koichi Wakata of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) is at bottom center. Clockwise from his position are Flight Engineers Alexander Skvortsov and Mikhail Tyurin of Russia's Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos), Steve Swanson and Rick Mastracchio of NASA and Oleg Artemyev of Roscosmos."

27. Earthrise from NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter.

28. Wind swept dunes on Mars.

"Nili Patera is one of the most active dune fields on the planet. "

29. Astronaut Koichi Wakata as he gazes out of the cupola on the ISS.

"The Cupola is a panoramic control tower for the International Space Station, a dome-shaped module with windows through which operations on the outside of the station can be observed and guided. It is a pressurized observation and work area that accommodates command and control workstations and other hardware. Through the robotics workstation, astronauts are able to control the space station’s robotic arm, which helps with the attachment and assembly of various station elements, very much like the operator of a building crane perched in a control cabin. At any time, crew members in the Cupola can communicate with other crew members, either in another part of the station or outside during spacewalk activities. Spacewalking activities can be observed from the Cupola along with visiting spacecraft and external areas of the station with the Cupola offering a viewing spectrum of 360 degrees."

30. ~Spacewalk Selfie~

"t's been said that it's difficult to get a good selfie while wearing a spacesuit, but an astronaut snapped this one during a spacewalk on April 23 outside the International Space Station! Astronauts Steve Swanson and Rick Mastracchio completed a short spacewalk to replace a failed Multiplexer/Demultiplexer (MDM) back up computer."

31. The "Blood Moon" lunar eclipse on April 15th.

"From open prairie land on the 1625-acre Johnson Space Center site, one of our photographers took this multi-frame composite image of the so-called "Blood Moon" lunar eclipse in the early hours of April 15. During these rare events, the full moon rapidly darkens and then glows red as it enters the Earth's shadow. Though a lunar eclipse can be seen only at night, it's worth staying up to catch the show. The next full lunar eclipse visible in the U.S. will be in 2019."

32. The Southern Lights from the ISS.

33. A partial solar eclipse as viewed from NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory.

"Such a lunar transit happens two to three times each year. This one lasted two and one half hours, which is the longest ever recorded. SDO is the most advanced spacecraft ever designed to study the sun and its dynamic behavior. It provides images 10 times clearer than high definition television and more comprehensive science data faster than any solar observing spacecraft in history."

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