Brown dwarf: Located some 75 light years from Earth, the failed star dubbed CFBDSIR 1458+10B is likely the coldest star yet discovered, with a temperature about that of boiling water.
This new view of the North America nebula obtained on Feb. 16 combines both visible and infrared light observations, taken by the Digitized Sky Survey and NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, respectively, into a single vivid picture. The nebula is named after its resemblance to the North American continent in visible light, which in this image is represented in blue.
This Hubble composite shows 12 views of galaxies colliding, dramatically illustrating how galactic collisions produce a remarkable variety of intricate structures in never-before-seen detail.
This is an artist's concept of a gas giant planet orbiting the cool, red dwarf star Gliese 876, located 15 light-years away in the autumn constellation Aquarius. The planet was discovered in 1998. But new Hubble Space Telescope measurements of the star's wobble, caused by the gravitational tug of the planet, firmly establish the planet's mass as being no more than approximately twice that of Jupiter's.
Scientists peered through a galactic window in the ladle of the Big Dipper, using the Herschel telescope to look 10 billion years backwards in time and investigate the origins of galaxies, which turn out to require 20 times less dark matter than previously calculated.
Firefighters use a foam gun to extinguish a fire during a joint training exercise between the Emergency Ministry and airport services at Yemelyanovo Airport in the Siberian city of Krasnoyarsk, Russia. The exercise was intended to simulate a fire resulting from a crash landing.
On Oct. 9, 1604, sky watchers, including astronomer Johannes Kepler, spotted a 'new star' in the western sky, rivaling the brilliance of nearby planets. 'Kepler's supernova' was the last exploding supernova seen in our Milky Way galaxy. Observers used only their eyes to study it, because the telescope was not yet invented. Now, astronomers have utilized NASA's three Great Observatories to analyze the supernova remnant in infrared, optical and X-ray light.
The NASA image captured by the Hubble Space Telescope on Aug. 10, 2008 shows a small portion of the Tarantula nebula near the star cluster NGC 2074. The region is a frontier of raw stellar creation, perhaps triggered by a nearby supernova explosion. It lies about 170,000 light-years away from Earth and is one of the most active star-forming regions in our local group of galaxies.
A new Hubble Space Telescope image of a celestial object called the Ant Nebula may shed new light on the future demise of our Sun. The Ant Nebula, whose technical name is Mz3, resembles the head and thorax of an ant when observed with ground-based telescopes. The new Hubble image, with 10 times the resolution revealing 100 times more detail, shows the 'ant's' body as a pair of fiery lobes protruding from a dying, Sun-like star. The Ant Nebula is located between 3,000 and 6,000 light years from Earth in the southern constellation Norma.
A schoolteacher discovered a blob of glowing hydrogen gas – called Hanny's Voorwerp in her honor – that astronomers say points to a nearly-invisible quenched quasar.