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Gallery: Spacecraft and Technology
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Add Image to Favorite List 2012-06-08 Earth LDSD
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Sled tests will allow NASA's Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator Project, or LDSD, to test inflatable and parachute decelerators to slow spacecraft prior to landing.
PIA15798:
NASA Tests Future Mars Landing Technology
Full Resolution:     TIFF (29.04 MB)     JPEG (641 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-06-08 NuSTAR
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The carrier plane, L-1011 'Stargazer,' that will give NASA's NuSTAR and its rocket a lift to their airborne launch site is seen here at sunrise on Kwajalein Atoll in the Pacific Ocean.
PIA15638:
NuSTAR on Coral Island of Kwajalein
Full Resolution:     TIFF (9.45 MB)     JPEG (302.8 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-06-07 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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This artist's concept features NASA's Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover, a mobile robot for investigating Mars' past or present ability to sustain microbial life.
PIA15791:
Curiosity -- Robot Geologist and Chemist in One! (Artist's Concept)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (60.75 MB)     JPEG (1.604 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-06-04 NuSTAR
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This photo shows the Orbital Sciences Corporation Pegasus XL rocket with NASA's NuSTAR spacecraft after attachment to the L-1011 carrier aircraft known as 'Stargazer.'
PIA15633:
NuSTAR Hitches a Ride on the 'Stargazer'
Full Resolution:     TIFF (17.94 MB)     JPEG (635.3 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-05-30 NuSTAR
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NASA's NuSTAR will be able to identify individual black holes making up the diffuse X-ray glow, also called the X-ray background. At bottom right is a simulated view of what NuSTAR will see.
PIA15632:
Bringing Black Holes Into Focus
Full Resolution:     TIFF (4.674 MB)     JPEG (143 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-05-30 NuSTAR
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NASA's Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR, has a complex set of mirrors, or optics, that will help it see high-energy X-ray light in greater detail than ever before.
PIA15631:
NuSTAR's Russian Doll-like Mirrors
Full Resolution:     TIFF (6.23 MB)     JPEG (394.1 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-05-23 FINESSE
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This is an artist's rendering of the spacecraft FINESSE orbiting above Earth. Proposed for launch in 2016 as part of NASA's Explorers Program, FINESSE would take the first 'family portrait' of extrasolar planets.
PIA15778:
FINESSE -- A Proposed Exoplanet Mission (Artist Concept)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (30.73 MB)     JPEG (284.1 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-05-22 NuSTAR
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This artist's concept shows NASA's NuSTAR mission orbiting Earth. NuSTAR will hunt for hidden black holes and other exotic cosmic objects.
PIA15777:
NuSTAR Orbits Earth (Artist Concept)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (2.768 MB)     JPEG (121.4 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-05-11 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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Michael Malin, left, principal investigator for three science cameras on NASA's Curiosity Mars rover, comments to a news reporter during tests with Curiosity's mobility-test stand-in, Scarecrow, on Dumont Dunes in California's Mojave Desert.
PIA15683:
Watching Test Drives in California for Rover Mission to Mars
Full Resolution:     TIFF (6.003 MB)     JPEG (219.9 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-05-11 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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NASA's Mars Science Laboratory mission team members ran mobility tests on the test rover called 'Scarecrow' on sand dunes near Death Valley, Ca. in early May 2012 in preparation for operating the Curiosity rover, currently en route to Mars.
PIA15682:
Test Rover Aids Preparations in California for Curiosity Rover on Mars
Full Resolution:     TIFF (23.97 MB)     JPEG (778.3 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-05-10 OCO-2
OCO-2
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Technicians prep NASA's OCO-2 instrument for shipping at Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena, Ca.
PIA15654:
NASA's OCO-2 Instrument Completes Construction
Full Resolution:     TIFF (58.9 MB)     JPEG (1.819 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-05-10 Vesta Dawn
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This image shows three slices of a class of meteorites that fell to Earth that NASA's Dawn mission has confirmed as originating from the giant asteroid Vesta.
PIA15605:
Meteorites from Vesta
Full Resolution:     TIFF (2.768 MB)     JPEG (98.93 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-05-07 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
MAHLI
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An in-flight camera check produced this out-of-focus image when NASA's Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft turned on illumination sources that are part of the Curiosity rover's Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) instrument.
PIA15294:
Camera Test on Curiosity During Flight to Mars
Full Resolution:     TIFF (5.77 MB)     JPEG (63.46 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-05-02 Galaxy Evolution Explorer (GALEX)
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This computer-simulated image shows gas from a tidally shredded star falling into a black hole. Astronomers observed the flare in ultraviolet light using NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer.
PIA15429:
Black Hole Erupts Animation Icon
Full Resolution:     TIFF (1.875 MB)     JPEG (30.63 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-04-12 Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE)
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This artist's concept shows a 'feeding,' or active, supermassive black hole with a jet streaming outward at nearly the speed of light. Such active black holes are often found at the hearts of elliptical galaxies.
PIA15414:
Cosmic Jets Coming at You (Artist's Concept)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (40.5 MB)     JPEG (1.049 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-04-05 Kepler
Planck
Spitzer Space Telescope
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From left to right, artist's concepts of the Spitzer, Planck and Kepler space telescopes. NASA extended Spitzer and Kepler for two additional years; and the U.S. portion of Planck, a European Space Agency mission, for one year.
PIA15423:
Spitzer, Planck and Kepler Extended by NASA (Artist's Concept)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (2.733 MB)     JPEG (84.37 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-03-27 GRAIL
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An artist's depiction of the twin spacecraft that comprise NASA's GRAIL mission. During the GRAIL mission's science phase, spacecraft (Ebb and Flow) transmit radio signals precisely defining the distance between them as they orbit the moon in formation.
PIA13966:
NASA's GRAIL Spacecraft in Science Collection Phase (Artist's Concept)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (12.01 MB)     JPEG (210.7 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-03-27 GRAIL
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An artist's depiction of the twin spacecraft (Ebb and Flow) that comprise NASA's GRAIL mission. As 'Ebb and Flow' fly over areas of greater and lesser gravity surface features can influence the distance between the two spacecraft.
PIA13965:
GRAIL Spacecraft Over the Moon (Artist's Concept)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (12.01 MB)     JPEG (176.2 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-03-02 NuSTAR
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An Orbital Sciences technician completes final checks of NASA's Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR, before the Pegasus payload fairing is secured around it.
PIA15411:
Wrapping NuSTAR in Its Rocket Nose Cone
Full Resolution:     TIFF (19.52 MB)     JPEG (688.7 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-03-02 NuSTAR
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A spacecraft technician is performing closeout work inside the fairing that will be installed around NASA's Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) spacecraft in a processing facility at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.
PIA15410:
Inside NuSTAR's Nose Cone
Full Resolution:     TIFF (19.12 MB)     JPEG (695.7 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-02-28 InSight
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This artist rendition is of the Interior exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport (InSight) Lander. InSight proposes to place a single geophysical lander on Mars to study its deep interior.
PIA13958:
InSight, a Mars MIssion (Artist Concept)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (81.03 MB)     JPEG (1.73 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-02-23 NuSTAR
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Inside an environmental enclosure at Vandenberg Air Force Base's processing facility in California, solar panels line the sides of NASA's Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR), which was just joined to the Orbital Sciences Pegasus XL rocket.
PIA15269:
Uniting of NuSTAR Spacecraft and Rocket
Full Resolution:     TIFF (17.94 MB)     JPEG (632.6 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-02-23 NuSTAR
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At Vandenberg Air Force Base's processing facility in California, the separation ring on the aft end of NASA's Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR), at right, inches its way toward the third stage of an Orbital Sciences Pegasus XL rocket.
PIA15268:
NuSTAR Inches Toward its Rocket
Full Resolution:     TIFF (17.96 MB)     JPEG (453.5 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-02-23 NuSTAR
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Inside an environmental enclosure at Vandenberg Air Force Base's processing facility in California, technicians complete the final steps in mating NASA's Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) and its Orbital Sciences Pegasus XL rocket.
PIA15267:
Final Steps in Mating NuSTAR to its Rocket
Full Resolution:     TIFF (17.94 MB)     JPEG (694.6 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-02-22 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
Robotic Arm (MSL)
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A NASA Mars Science Laboratory test rover called the Vehicle System Test Bed, or VSTB, at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA serves as the closest double for Curiosity in evaluations of the mission's hardware and software.
PIA15025:
Testing Precision of Movement of Curiosity's Robotic Arm
Full Resolution:     TIFF (14.36 MB)     JPEG (1.014 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-02-18 NuSTAR
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This is an artist's concept of NASA's NuSTAR spacecraft which has a 10-meter mast that deploys after launch to separate the optics modules (right) from the detectors in the focal plane (left).
PIA15265:
Artist's Concept of NuSTAR
Full Resolution:     TIFF (14.8 MB)     JPEG (497.5 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-02-14 M-Cube/COVE
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The image on the left is an artist rendering of Montana State University's Explorer 1 CubeSat; at right is a CubeSat created by the University of Michigan designated the Michigan Mulitpurpose Mini-satellite, or M-Cubed.
PIA15380:
CubeSat Artist Rendering and NASA's M-Cubed/COVE
Full Resolution:     TIFF (1.296 MB)     JPEG (44.08 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-02-07 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
MAHLI
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The Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) camera at the end of the robotic arm of NASA's Curiosity rover will use a calibration target attached to a shoulder joint of the arm.
PIA15289:
Calibration Target on Curiosity for Camera on Rover's Arm
Full Resolution:     TIFF (32.97 MB)     JPEG (1.049 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-02-07 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
MAHLI
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During pre-flight testing in March 2011, the Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) camera on NASA's Mars rover Curiosity took this image of the MAHLI calibration target under illumination from MAHLI's two ultraviolet LEDs (light emitting diodes).
PIA15288:
MAHLI Calibration Target in Ultraviolet Light
Full Resolution:     TIFF (11.36 MB)     JPEG (161.4 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-02-07 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
MAHLI
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During pre-flight testing, the Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) camera on NASA's Mars rover Curiosity took this image of the MAHLI calibration target from a distance of 3.94 inches (10 centimeters) away from the target.
PIA15287:
Calibration Target as Seen by Mars Hand Lens Imager
Full Resolution:     TIFF (11.36 MB)     JPEG (248.1 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-02-07 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
MAHLI
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This image provides a way to have a full-size printout of the calibration target for the Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) camera on NASA's Mars rover Curiosity.
PIA15286:
Full-Scale Image of MAHLI Calibration Target
Full Resolution:     TIFF (2.915 MB)     JPEG (188.3 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-02-07 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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The Lincoln penny in this photograph is part of a camera calibration target attached to NASA's Mars rover Curiosity.
PIA15285:
Lincoln Cent on Mars Rover
Full Resolution:     TIFF (4.786 MB)     JPEG (418.5 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-02-07 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
Alpha Particle X-ray Spectrometer
MAHLI
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Two instruments at the end of the robotic arm on NASA's Mars rover Curiosity will use calibration targets attached to a shoulder joint of the arm. The penny is a size reference giving the public a familiar object for perceiving size on Mars easily.
PIA15284:
Contact Instrument Calibration Targets on Mars Rover Curiosity
Full Resolution:     TIFF (36.16 MB)     JPEG (703 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-02-01 GRAIL
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Using a precision formation-flying technique, NASA's twin GRAIL spacecraft will map the moon's gravity field. This is an artist's concept.
PIA13956:
GRAIL Flying in Formation (Artist's Concept)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (53.69 MB)     JPEG (1.127 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-01-26 Kepler
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This artist's concept shows an overhead view of the orbital position of the planets in systems with multiple transiting planets discovered by NASA's Kepler mission. All the colored planets have been verified.
PIA15264:
Kepler's Planetary Systems in Motion (Artist Concept) Animation Icon
Full Resolution:     TIFF (3.871 MB)     JPEG (97.41 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-01-25 NuSTAR
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NASA's Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR, mission is lowered into its shipping container at Orbital Sciences Corporation in Dulles, Va. It is scheduled to launch from Kwajalein Atoll in the Marshall Islands on March 14, 2012.
PIA15263:
Beginning the Journey to the Launch Pad
Full Resolution:     TIFF (24.78 MB)     JPEG (1.371 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-01-18 NuSTAR
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Engineers in the final stages of assembling NASA's Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR, at Orbital Sciences Corporation in Dulles, Va., January 2012.
PIA15262:
Integrating NuSTAR
Full Resolution:     TIFF (33.76 MB)     JPEG (1.122 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-01-18 NuSTAR
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NASA's Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR, at Orbital Sciences Corporation in Dulles, Va., January 2012.
PIA15261:
NuSTAR Poses for the Camera
Full Resolution:     TIFF (36.16 MB)     JPEG (1.362 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-01-17 Planck
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This is an artist's concept of the Planck spacecraft. Planck was launched with the Herschel spacecraft, though the two missions separated shortly after launch and operate independently from each other.
PIA13953:
Planck Spacecraft (Artist Concept)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (8.134 MB)     JPEG (186.9 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-01-17 Mars Exploration Rover (MER)
Mars Pathfinder (MPF)
Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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Two spacecraft engineers stand with three generations of Mars rovers developed at NASA's JPL, Pasadena, Ca. Front and center is a flight spare of Sojourner, left is a working sibling to Spirit and Opportunity, right is test rover Curiosity.
PIA15280:
Three Generations of Rovers with Crouching Engineers
Full Resolution:     TIFF (73.16 MB)     JPEG (4.303 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-01-17 Mars Exploration Rover (MER)
Mars Pathfinder (MPF)
Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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Two spacecraft engineers stand with three generations of Mars rovers developed at NASA's JPL, Pasadena, Ca. Front and center is a flight spare of Sojourner, left is a working sibling to Spirit and Opportunity, right is test rover Curiosity.
PIA15279:
Three Generations of Rovers with Standing Engineers
Full Resolution:     TIFF (73.16 MB)     JPEG (5.508 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-01-17 Mars Exploration Rover (MER)
Mars Pathfinder (MPF)
Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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This grouping of two test rovers and a flight spare provides a graphic comparison of three generations of Mars rovers developed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. The setting is JPL's Mars Yard testing area.
PIA15278:
Three Generations of Rovers in Mars Yard
Full Resolution:     TIFF (54.49 MB)     JPEG (3.191 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2012-01-17 Mars Exploration Rover (MER)
Mars Pathfinder (MPF)
Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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This grouping of two test rovers and a flight spare provides a graphic comparison of three generations of Mars rovers developed at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. The setting is JPL's Mars Yard testing area.
PIA15277:
Three Generations in Mars Yard, High Viewpoint
Full Resolution:     TIFF (73.16 MB)     JPEG (5.475 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-12-16 Sol (our sun) Voyager
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This frame from an animation shows how the magnetic field lines emanating from our sun spiral out into the solar system as the sun rotates. NASA's Voyager 1 is in an area scientists are calling the stagnation region, at the outer layer of the heliosphere.
PIA15179:
The Sun's Magnetic Field Animation Icon
Full Resolution:     TIFF (2.762 MB)     JPEG (76.94 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-12-16 Sol (our sun) Voyager
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This artist's concept shows NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft in a new region at the edge of our solar system where the magnetic field lines generated by our sun are piling up and intensifying.
PIA15178:
Magnetic Field Lines Intensifying (Artist's Concept)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (2.768 MB)     JPEG (61.26 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-12-16 Sol (our sun) Voyager
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This artist's concept shows NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft in a new region at the edge of our solar system where the amount of high-energy particles diffusing into our solar system from outside has increased.
PIA15177:
Energetic Particles from Outside our Solar System Increase (Artist's Concept)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (2.768 MB)     JPEG (103.7 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-12-16 Sol (our sun) Voyager
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This artist's concept shows NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft in a new region at the edge of our solar system where there are fewer low energy particles that originate from inside our solar system.
PIA15176:
Low-Energy Particles Leaking out of the Solar System (Artist's Concept)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (2.768 MB)     JPEG (130.8 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-12-09 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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About the size of a small SUV, NASA's Curiosity rover is well equipped for a tour of Gale Crater on Mars. This impressive rover has six-wheel drive and the ability to turn in place a full 360 degrees, as well as the agility to climb steep hills.
PIA15181:
NASA's Curiosity Rover in Profile
Full Resolution:     TIFF (38.16 MB)     JPEG (1.19 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-12-09 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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NASA's Curiosity rover and its rocket-powered descent vehicle pose for a portrait at JPL's Spacecraft Assembly Facility prior to its launch on November 26, 2011 from the Space Launch Complex 41 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.
PIA15180:
3-D Anaglyph Fish-eye View of NASA's Curiosity Rover and its Rocket-Powered Descent Vehicle
Full Resolution:     TIFF (36.55 MB)     JPEG (933.9 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-12-07 Mars Exploration Rover (MER)
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The total distance driven on Mars by NASA's Mars Exploration Rover, 21.35 miles by early December 2011, is approaching the record total for off-Earth driving, held by the robotic Lunokhod 2 rover operated on Earth's moon by the Soviet Union in 1973.
PIA14859:
Off-Earth Driving Champs (in Miles)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (445.8 kB)     JPEG (61.98 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-12-05 Kepler-22b Kepler
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This artist's conception illustrates Kepler-22b, a planet known to comfortably circle in the habitable zone of a sun-like star. It is the first planet that NASA's Kepler mission has confirmed to orbit in a star's habitable zone.
PIA14883:
Closer to Finding an Earth (Artist's Concept)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (37.75 MB)     JPEG (893.4 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-12-05 Kepler-22b Kepler
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This diagram compares our own solar system to Kepler-22, a star system containing the first 'habitable zone' planet -- the sweet spot around a star where temperatures are right for water to exist in its liquid form, discovered by NASA's Kepler mission.
PIA14882:
Kepler-22b -- Comfortably Circling within the Habitable Zone
Full Resolution:     TIFF (21.6 MB)     JPEG (374.7 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-12-05 Voyager
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NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft has entered a new region between our solar system and interstellar space, which scientists are calling the stagnation region as depicted in this artist rendering.
PIA15173:
Voyager 1 Encounters Stagnation Region (Artist's Concept)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (2.768 MB)     JPEG (55.05 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-28 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
Mastcam
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This figure shows images acquired through each of the eight filters in the filter wheel of the 34-millimeter-focal-length Mast Camera (Mastcam-34) on NASA's Mars rover Curiosity.
PIA15109:
Illustrating MastCam Capabilities with a Terrestrial Scene
Full Resolution:     TIFF (1.325 MB)     JPEG (54.61 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-28 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
Mastcam
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This set of views illustrates capabilities of the Mast Camera (MastCam) instrument on NASA's Mars Science Laboratory's Curiosity rover, using a scene on Earth as an example of what MastCam's two cameras can see from different distances.
PIA15108:
Illustrating MastCam Capabilities with a Terrestrial Scene
Full Resolution:     TIFF (1.922 MB)     JPEG (91.86 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-28 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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A section of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory's Gale Crater landing site is shown, with a representative path from the landing location toward the layered mound to the south.
PIA15107:
Studying a Wider Swath
Full Resolution:     TIFF (1.932 MB)     JPEG (93.73 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-28 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
ChemCam
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This view of the head of the remote sensing mast on the Mars Science Laboratory mission's rover, Curiosity, shows seven of the 17 cameras on the rover.
PIA15106:
Head of Mast on Mars Rover Curiosity
Full Resolution:     TIFF (1.922 MB)     JPEG (85.8 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-28 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
ChemCam
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This image displays the type of detail discernible with the telescopic camera of the Chemistry and Camera (ChemCam) instrument on the Mars Science Laboratory mission's Curiosity rover.
PIA15105:
Detail Observed from 10 Feet away with Curiosity's ChemCam
Full Resolution:     TIFF (922.8 kB)     JPEG (60.19 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-28 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
ChemCam
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This image provides an example of the type of data collected by the Chemistry and Camera (ChemCam) instrument on NASA's Mars Science Laboratory mission's Curiosity rover.
PIA15104:
Example of a Spectrum from Curiosity's ChemCam Instrument
Full Resolution:     TIFF (2.062 MB)     JPEG (59.75 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-28 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
ChemCam
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This image illustrates the principals of a technique called 'laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy,' which the Chemistry and Camera (ChemCam) instrument onboard NASA's rover, Curiosity, will use on Mars.
PIA15103:
Schematic of Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy
Full Resolution:     TIFF (1.845 MB)     JPEG (63.89 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-28 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
SAM
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The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument for NASA's Mars Science Laboratory mission will study chemistry of rocks, soil and air as the mission's rover, Curiosity, investigates Gale Crater on Mars.
PIA15100:
SAM Instrument at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center
Full Resolution:     TIFF (36.16 MB)     JPEG (1.05 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-23 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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Right-eye view of NASA's Curiosity rover and its powered descent vehicle pose for photographs prior to being integrated for launch at JPL's Spacecraft Assembly Facility.
PIA15089:
Stereo (Right) Fish-eye View of NASA's Curiosity Rover and its Powered Descent Vehicle
Full Resolution:     TIFF (36.55 MB)     JPEG (953.5 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-23 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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Left-eye view of NASA's Curiosity rover and its powered descent vehicle pose for photographs prior to being integrated for launch at JPL's Spacecraft Assembly Facility.
PIA15088:
Stereo (Left) Fish-eye View of NASA's Curiosity Rover and its Powered Descent Vehicle
Full Resolution:     TIFF (36.55 MB)     JPEG (929.5 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-23 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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An engineer says goodbye to the Curiosity rover and its powered descent vehicle in the Jet Propulsion Laboratory's Spacecraft Assembly Facility shortly before the spacecraft was readied for shipment to Kennedy Space Center for launch.
PIA15087:
Fish-eye View of NASA's Curiosity Rover and its Powered Descent Vehicle
Full Resolution:     TIFF (33.92 MB)     JPEG (939.5 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-21 Mars Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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Modern-day Mars experiences cyclical changes in climate and, consequently, ice distribution. Unlike Earth, the obliquity (or tilt) of Mars changes substantially on timescales of hundreds of thousands to millions of years.
PIA15095:
Changes in Tilt of Mars' Axis
Full Resolution:     TIFF (2.153 MB)     JPEG (27.73 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-18 MAVEN
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This artist's concept depicts NASA's Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN (MAVEN) spacecraft near Mars. MAVEN is in development for launch in 2013 and will be the first mission devoted to understanding the Martian upper atmosphere.
PIA14761:
MAVEN at Mars (Artist's Concept)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (25.25 MB)     JPEG (323 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-15 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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This artist's concept depicts the rover Curiosity, of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory mission, as it uses its Chemistry and Camera (ChemCam) instrument to investigate the composition of a rock surface.
PIA14760:
Curiosity at Work on Mars (Artist's Concept)
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-10 720x540x3
Scientists are simulating how the very first stars in our universe were born. The stars we see today formed out of collapsing clouds of gas and dust. In the very early universe, however, the stars had fewer ingredients available.
PIA14875:
Cooking up the First Stars
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-10 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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In the Vertical Integration Facility at Space Launch Complex 41, the payload fairing containing NASA's Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft was attached to its Atlas V rocket on Nov. 3, 2011.
PIA15031:
Mars Science Laboratory Atop Its Atlas V
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-10 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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Employees at Space Launch Complex 41 of Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla., keep watch as the payload fairing containing NASA's Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft is lifted up the side of the Vertical Integration Facility on Nov. 3, 2011.
PIA15030:
Hoisting NASA's Mars Science Laboratory Onto Its Atlas V
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-10 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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Preparations are under way to enclose NASA's Mars Science Laboratory in an Atlas V rocket payload fairing. The fairing protects the spacecraft from the impact of aerodynamic pressure and heating during ascent.
PIA15029:
Mars Science Laboratory and Its Payload Fairing
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-10 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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NASA's Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft has been fully stacked for flight in this photograph from inside the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility at NASA Kennedy Space Center, Fla., in October 2011.
PIA15028:
Mars Science Laboratory Stacked Spacecraft
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-10 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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During final stacking of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft, the heat shield is positioned for integration with the rest of the spacecraft in this photograph from inside the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility at NASA Kennedy Space Center, Fla.
PIA15027:
Mars Science Laboratory Heat Shield Integration for Flight
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-10 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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The cruise stage of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft is being prepared for final stacking of the spacecraft in this photograph from inside the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility at NASA Kennedy Space Center, Fla.
PIA15026:
Mars Science Laboratory Cruise Stage
Full Resolution:     TIFF (1.818 MB)     JPEG (101.7 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-10 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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The 'powered descent vehicle' of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft is being prepared for final integration into the spacecraft's back shell in this photograph from inside the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility at NASA Kennedy Space Center, Fla.
PIA15023:
Integrating Powered Descent Vehicle with Back Shell of Mars Spacecraft
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-10 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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The Mars Science Laboratory mission's 'powered descent vehicle' is the integrated combination of the spacecraft's descent stage and the rover Curiosity.
PIA15022:
Mars Science Laboratory Powered Descent Vehicle
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-10 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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The Mars Science Laboratory mission's rover, Curiosity, is prepared for final integration into the complete NASA spacecraft in this photograph taken inside the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility at NASA Kennedy Space Center, Fla.
PIA15021:
Mars Science Laboratory Rover Closeout
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-11-10 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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The descent stage of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft is being lifted during assembly of the spacecraft in this photograph taken inside the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility at NASA Kennedy Space Center, Fla.
PIA15020:
Mars Science Laboratory Descent Stage
Full Resolution:     TIFF (2.087 MB)     JPEG (101.6 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-10-05 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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At the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, the Mars Science Laboratory rover, Curiosity, and the spacecraft's descent stage have been enclosed inside the spacecraft's aeroshell.
PIA14758:
Mars Science Laboratory Aeroshell with Curiosity Inside
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-10-05 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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At the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, the 'back shell powered descent vehicle' configuration, containing NASA's Mars Science Laboratory rover, Curiosity, is being placed on the spacecraft's heat shield.
PIA14757:
Connecting Curiosity's Heat Shield and Back Shell
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-10-05 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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At the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, the 'back shell powered descent vehicle' configuration of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory is being rotated for final closeout actions.
PIA14756:
Final Closeout Actions for Curiosity's Heat Shield and Back Shell
Full Resolution:     TIFF (36 MB)     JPEG (1.095 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-10-05 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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At the Payload Hazardous Servicing Facility at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, the 'back shell powered descent vehicle' configuration of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory is being rotated for final closeout actions.
PIA14755:
Rotating Curiosity's Back Shell Powered Descent Vehicle
Full Resolution:     TIFF (53.75 MB)     JPEG (1.1 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-10-03 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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This artist's concept depicts the moment immediately after NASA's Curiosity rover touches down onto the Martian surface. The spacecraft has detected touchdown, and pyrotechnic cutters have severed connections between rover and spacecraft's descent stage.
PIA14841:
A Moment After Curiosity's Touchdown, Artist's Concept
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-10-03 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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This artist's concept depicts the moment that NASA's Curiosity rover touches down onto the Martian surface. The Mars Science Laboratory will use the sky crane touchdown system.
PIA14840:
Curiosity Touching Down, Artist's Concept
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-10-03 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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This artist's concept shows the sky crane maneuver during the descent of NASA's Curiosity rover to the Martian surface. The sheer size of the rover (over one ton, or 900 kilograms) would preclude it from taking advantage of an airbag-assisted landing.
PIA14839:
Curiosity's Sky Crane Maneuver, Artist's Concept
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-10-03 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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This is an artist's concept of the rover and descent stage for NASA's Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft during the final minute before the rover, Curiosity, touches down on the surface of Mars.
PIA14838:
Curiosity and Descent Stage, Artist's Concept
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-10-03 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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This artist's concept shows NASA's Curiosity rover tucked inside the Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft's backshell while the spacecraft is descending on a parachute toward Mars. Here, the spacecraft's heat shield has already been jettisoned.
PIA14837:
Curiosity While on Parachute, Artist's Concept
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-10-03 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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This artist's concept is of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Curiosity rover parachute system; the largest parachute ever built to fly on a planetary mission. The parachute is attached to the top of the backshell portion of the spacecraft's aeroshell.
PIA14836:
Mars Science Laboratory Parachute, Artist's Concept
Full Resolution:     TIFF (10.56 MB)     JPEG (118.4 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-10-03 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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This artist's concept depicts the interaction of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft with the upper atmosphere of Mars during the entry, descent and landing of the Curiosity rover onto the Martian surface.
PIA14835:
Deceleration of Mars Science Laboratory in Martian Atmosphere, Artist's Concept
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-10-03 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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This artist's concept shows thrusters firing during the entry, descent and landing phase for NASA's Mars Science Laboratory mission to Mars.
PIA14834:
Mars Science Laboratory Guided Entry at Mars, Artist's Concept
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-10-03 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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This is an artist's concept of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory aeroshell capsule as it enters the Martian atmosphere. The Curiosity rover and the spacecraft's descent stage are safely tucked inside the aeroshell at this point.
PIA14833:
Curiosity Inside Aeroshell, Artist's Concept
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-10-03 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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This is an artist's concept of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft approaching Mars. The Curiosity rover is safely tucked inside the spacecraft's aeroshell.
PIA14832:
Curiosity Approaching Mars, Artist's Concept
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-10-03 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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This is an artist's concept of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory spacecraft during its cruise phase between launch and final approach to Mars. The spacecraft includes a disc-shaped cruise stage (on the left) attached to the aeroshell.
PIA14831:
Mars Science Laboratory Spacecraft During Cruise, Artist's Concept
Full Resolution:     TIFF (10.56 MB)     JPEG (305.2 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-10-03 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL)
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This artist concept is of the Atlas V541 launch vehicle that will carry NASA's Curiosity rover on its way to Mars. The Atlas V 541 vehicle was selected as it has the right liftoff capability for heavy weight requirements of the rover and its spacecraft.
PIA14830:
Curiosity Launch Vehicle, Artist's Concept
Full Resolution:     TIFF (10.56 MB)     JPEG (299.8 kB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-09-26 MAVEN
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NASA's Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN (MAVEN) spacecraft is scheduled to launch in November 2013 and will be the first mission devoted to understanding the Martian upper atmosphere.
PIA14754:
Primary Structure for MAVEN Spacecraft
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-09-15 Kepler
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This artist's conception illustrates the Kepler-16 system (white) from an overhead view, showing its planet Kepler-16b and the eccentric orbits of the two stars it circles (labeled A and B).
PIA14727:
Bird's Eye View of Kepler-16 System (Artist Concept)
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-09-15 Kepler
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This artist's image illustrates the Kepler-16 system from an overhead view, showing the eccentric orbits of the two stars as they twirl around each other every 41 days like figure skaters.
PIA14726:
A Dance of Two Suns and One Planet (Artist Concept) Animation Icon
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-09-15 Kepler
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This artist's image illustrates Kepler-16b, the first directly detected circumbinary planet, which is a planet that orbits two stars.
PIA14725:
Three Eclipsing Bodies (Artist Concept) Animation Icon
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Add Image to Favorite List 2011-09-15 Kepler
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NASA's Kepler mission has discovered a world where two suns set over the horizon instead of just one. The planet, called Kepler-16b, is the most 'Tatooine-like' planet yet found in our galaxy and is depicted here in this artist's concept.
PIA14724:
Where the Sun Sets Twice (Artist Concept)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (144 MB)     JPEG (1.426 MB)
Add Image to Favorite List 2011-09-13 Herschel Space Observatory
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In this artist's conception based on data from ESA's Herschel observatory, a galaxy accretes mass from rapid, narrow streams of cold gas. These filaments provide the galaxy with continuous flows of raw material to feed its star-forming at a leisurely pace
PIA14772:
Galaxy Feeds Off Gas (Artist Concept)
Full Resolution:     TIFF (14.08 MB)     JPEG (135.8 kB)
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