Unless you can afford a ticket to space ($200,000 with Virgin Galactic), the only way we will ever be able to clearly view our planet in its entirety or any distant galaxies is through the photographs released by NASA (The National Aeronautics and Space Agency). So, here are a few of my favorite NASA photos from its various space programs. You will find them breathtaking.
(All photographs are Copyright NASA.)Sun Over Earth
Earth’s horizon as the sun sets over the Pacific Ocean. Taken onboard the International Space Station (ISS).
Space Shuttle Endeavour Over Earth
The space shuttle Endeavour over the colorful horizon of earth. Taken by one of the Expedition 22 crew member before the shuttle was docked with the International Space Station.
The International Space Station from Above
The International Space Station (ISS) is the largest human-made object ever to orbit the Earth. Its so big that you can sometimes see it drifting overhead… After the departure of the space shuttle Endeavour from the space station, a crew member captured this stunning image of the space station high above the clouds, waters and the land.
Installs Panoramic Space Window
Floating just below the International Space Station, astronaut Nicholas Patrick adds the final finishing touches to the newly installed space windows hovering about 340 kilometers over the earth’s surface.
Space Station Over Earth
The International Space Station pictured from the space shuttle discovery after its undocking from the ISS.
The International Space Station and the Docked Space Shuttle Endeavou
The International Space Station docked together the space shuttle Endeavour approximately 350 km from the ground.
Sun Over Earth
The bright sun shining on the space station…
Aurora Australis Over Indian Ocean
Aurora Australis over the southern Indian ocean during night time. Pictured from the International Space Station.
The International Space Station’s view of the hurricane Danielle.
Magnificent Details in a Dusty Spiral Galaxy
A majestic spiral galaxy imaged by the Hubble Space Telescope in 1995.
Light and Shadow in the Carina Nebula
A mysterious and complex structure within the Carina Nebula obtained by the Hubble Space Telescope.
NGC 281 is a bustling hub of star formation about 10,000 light years away
A bursting hub of stars about 10,000 light years away.
Comets Kick up Dust in Helix Nebula
An often photographed cosmic starlet for its resemblance to a giant eye and its colors.
A Grazing Encounter Between Two Spiral Galaxies
Two spiral galaxies pass each other. The near-collision image caught by the Hubble Space Telescope.
Crab Nebula: Energy for 100,000 Suns
A stars’s death observed on earth as the supernova of 1054 A.D. After almost a thousand years, this is the remains left behind.
The Sombrero Galaxy from Hubble
A brilliant white core encircled by thick dust lanes in this amazing spiral galaxy. The galaxy is 50,000 light-years across and 28 million light years from Earth…
When Galaxies Overlap
Two large spiral galaxies which just happen to almost exactly line up. The foreground spiral is viewed nearly face-on, its pinwheel shape defined by young bright star clusters.
NGC 6188 and NGC 6164
Amazing shapes in clouds in NGC 6188 about 4,000 light-years away.
The Wizard Nebula
Located at 8,000 light-years away, the Wizard Nebula it has gravitation strong enough to form stars, and stellar winds and radiations powerful enough to create and dissolve towers of gas.
Rigel and the Witch Head Nebula
Double, double toil and trouble; Fire burn, and cauldron bubble.
Irregular Galaxy NGC 55
About 180,000 light-years away and is a well known satellite of our own Milky Way Galaxy.
Andromeda Island Universe
The most distant object easily visible to the unaided eye is M31, the great Andromeda Galaxy some two million light-years away.
Eleven million light-years away, Centaurus A is the closest active galaxy to planet Earth.
Young Suns of NGC 7129
3,000 light-years away lie young suns within the dusty NGC 7129. These suns are at a a very tender age, only a few million years old.
Star Cluster R136 Bursts Out
Some of the hottest, largest and most massive stars known. These lie in the center of the star-forming region 30 Doradus.
In the Arms of M83
More than twelve million light-years away lie this big, bright and beautiful spiral galaxy.
The Color of IC 1795
IC 1795 is located about 7,500 light years away toward the constellation of Cassiopeia.
Amazing Northern Lights Time-Lapse Video from NASA
Nasa has recently released this amazing time-lapse video of The Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis) created using over 500 still images.