Reaching out into space yields benefits on Earth. Many of these have practical applications — but there’s something more than that. Call it inspiration, perhaps, what photographer Ansel Adams referred to as nature’s “endless prospect of magic and wonder."
Our ongoing exploration of the solar system has yielded more than a few magical images. Why not keep some of them close by to inspire your own explorations? This week, we offer 10 planetary photos suitable for wallpapers on your desktop or phone. Find many more in our galleries. These images were the result of audacious expeditions into deep space; as author Edward Abbey said, "May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view.”
1. Martian Selfie
This self-portrait of NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover shows the robotic geologist in the “Murray Buttes” area on lower Mount Sharp. Key features on the skyline of this panorama are the dark mesa called “M12” to the left of the rover’s mast and pale, upper Mount Sharp to the right of the mast. The top of M12 stands about 23 feet (7 meters) above the base of the sloping piles of rocks just behind Curiosity. The scene combines approximately 60 images taken by the Mars Hand Lens Imager, or MAHLI, camera at the end of the rover’s robotic arm. Most of the component images were taken on September 17, 2016.
NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft captured this high-resolution, enhanced color view of Pluto on July 14, 2015. The image combines blue, red and infrared images taken by the Ralph/Multispectral Visual Imaging Camera (MVIC). Pluto’s surface sports a remarkable range of subtle colors, enhanced in this view to a rainbow of pale blues, yellows, oranges, and deep reds. Many landforms have their own distinct colors, telling a complex geological and climatological story that scientists have only just begun to decode.
On July 19, 2013, in an event celebrated the world over, our Cassini spacecraft slipped into Saturn’s shadow and turned to image the planet, seven of its moons, its inner rings — and, in the background, our home planet, Earth. This mosaic is special as it marks the third time our home planet was imaged from the outer solar system; the second time it was imaged by Cassini from Saturn’s orbit, the first time ever that inhabitants of Earth were made aware in advance that their photo would be taken from such a great distance.
Before leaving the Pluto system forever, New Horizons turned back to see Pluto backlit by the sun. The small world’s haze layer shows its blue color in this picture. The high-altitude haze is thought to be similar in nature to that seen at Saturn’s moon Titan. The source of both hazes likely involves sunlight-initiated chemical reactions of nitrogen and methane, leading to relatively small, soot-like particles called tholins. This image was generated by combining information from blue, red and near-infrared images to closely replicate the color a human eye would perceive.
A huge storm churning through the atmosphere in Saturn’s northern hemisphere overtakes itself as it encircles the planet in this true-color view from Cassini. This picture, captured on February 25, 2011, was taken about 12 weeks after the storm began, and the clouds by this time had formed a tail that wrapped around the planet. The storm is a prodigious source of radio noise, which comes from lightning deep within the planet’s atmosphere.
Jupiter is still just as stormy today, as seen in this recent view from NASA’s Juno spacecraft, when it soared directly over Jupiter’s south pole on February 2, 2017, from an altitude of about 62,800 miles (101,000 kilometers) above the cloud tops. From this unique vantage point we see the terminator (where day meets night) cutting across the Jovian south polar region’s restless, marbled atmosphere with the south pole itself approximately in the center of that border. This image was processed by citizen scientist John Landino. This enhanced color version highlights the bright high clouds and numerous meandering oval storms.
X-rays stream off the sun in this image showing observations from by our Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR, overlaid on a picture taken by our Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO). The NuSTAR data, seen in green and blue, reveal solar high-energy emission. The high-energy X-rays come from gas heated to above 3 million degrees. The red channel represents ultraviolet light captured by SDO, and shows the presence of lower-temperature material in the solar atmosphere at 1 million degrees.
This image from NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows Victoria crater, near the equator of Mars. The crater is approximately half a mile (800 meters) in diameter. It has a distinctive scalloped shape to its rim, caused by erosion and downhill movement of crater wall material. Since January 2004, the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity has been operating in the region where Victoria crater is found. Five days before this image was taken in October 2006, Opportunity arrived at the rim of the crater after a drive of more than over 5 miles (9 kilometers). The rover can be seen in this image, as a dot at roughly the “ten o'clock” position along the rim of the crater. (You can zoom in on the full-resolution version here.)
Last, but far from least, is this remarkable new view of our home planet. Last week, we released new global maps of Earth at night, providing the clearest yet composite view of the patterns of human settlement across our planet. This composite image, one of three new full-hemisphere views, provides a view of the Americas at night from the NASA-NOAA Suomi-NPP satellite. The clouds and sun glint — added here for aesthetic effect — are derived from MODIS instrument land surface and cloud cover products.
Mars in Fire signs People with their Mars in a Fire sign (Aries, Leo and Sagittarius) are quick to assert themselves. They are the type to get angry easily and you will see their temper flare up. More than any other Mars sign, it’s the Fire sign Mars who can resort to violence when angered. They have lots of energy to burn and it can lead to spontaneous adventures and impulsiveness. One thing they hate more than anything? Boredom. They have to be doing something with their time. The Fire sign Mars are prone to becoming reckless and can often find themselves getting in a lot of trouble.
Mars in Earth signs People with their Mars in an Earth sign (Taurus, Virgo and Capricorn) are patient and strategic. They are not very aggressive individuals and can be patient with anger. They prefer to spend their time being productive and usually working on their long term goals. They can be very successful people because they’re always on-the-go and they set realistic and achievable goals for themselves. The Earth sign Mars do not mind getting their hands dirty every now and then because they understand and value the meaning of hard work and dedication.
Mars in Air signs People with their Mars in an Air sign (Gemini, Libra and Aquarius) spend most of their time and energy into mental pursuits. They are knowledgeable and can be social butterflies as well. For some reason, they do attract a lot of people because their energy is contagious and fun. They aren’t quick to anger, but best believe they can give a fierce tongue-lashing and a cold shoulder. The Air sign Mars are the types to “think before doing” and so they develop this cleverness to them. They may miss out on opportunities because they sit and ponder too much, but there are times where opportunities come knocking at their door.
Mars in Water signs People with their Mars in a Water sign (Cancer, Scorpio and Pisces) are indirectly aggressive. Often times, the Water sign Mars at their worst, have trouble containing their anger. Since they are attached to their feelings, they won’t do something unless it feels right with them. They are capable of achieving their goals, but only if it sits right with them and if it’s going to be long term. The Water sign Mars often do need a little push. They have an incredibly strong intuition and no one knows whats best for them like they know whats best for themselves.
Structural Tests Underway for Top of
World’s Most Powerful Rocket
is underway at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, on
the agency’s new Space
Launch System, the world’s most powerful rocket. SLS and NASA’s Orion
spacecraft will enable deep-space missions, beginning a new era of
exploration beyond Earth’s orbit.
Engineers at Marshall have stacked four qualification
articles of the upper part of SLS into a 65-foot-tall test stand using more
than 3,000 bolts to hold the hardware together. Tests are currently underway to
ensure the rocket hardware can withstand the pressures of launch and flight.
The integrated tests consists of:
1. Launch Vehicle Adapter
2. Frangible Joint Assembly
3. Interim Cryogenic Propulsion Stage
4. Orion Stage Adapter
Engineers are using 28 load pistons to push, pull and
twist the rocket hardware, subjecting it to loads up to 40 percent greater than
that expected during flight. More than 100 miles of cables are transmitting measurements
across 1,900 data channels.
The Launch Vehicle Stage Adapter, LVSA, connects the
SLS core stage and the Interim Cryogenic Propulsion Stage, ICPS. The LVSA test
hardware is 26.5 feet tall, with a bottom diameter of 27.5 feet and a top
diameter of 16.8 feet. The frangible joint, located between the LVSA and ICPS,
is used to separate the two pieces of hardware during flight, allowing the ICPS
to provide the thrust to send Orion onto its mission.
The ICPS is a liquid oxygen/liquid hydrogen-based
system that will give Orion the big, in-space push needed to fly beyond the
moon before it returns to Earth on the first flight of SLS in 2018. For this
test series, the fuel tanks are filled with nonflammable liquid nitrogen and
pressurized with gaseous nitrogen to simulate flight conditions. The nitrogen
is chilled to the same temperature as the oxygen and hydrogen under launch conditions.
The Orion Stage Adapter connects the Orion spacecraft
to the ICPS. It is 4.8 feet tall, with a 16.8-foot bottom diameter and 18-foot
The first integrated flight for SLS and Orion will
allow NASA to use the lunar vicinity as a proving ground to test systems
farther from Earth, and demonstrate Orion can get to a stable orbit in the area
of space near the moon in order to support sending humans to deep space,
including the Journey to Mars.
airmom. tumblr. com/post/159215839296 is the mars post I was talking about you doing for the rest of the signs. it's simple, to the point, and informative. I like it a lot. lol.
ooo hehehe ok sure
Aries Mars: -anger e over everything - 1, 2, 3 action! (cannot handle laziness) -loves competition, either gym rat or athlete monstr -hates waiting -angr e sex could be a strong desire -strong risk-takers, u either try or die trying -loves the chase -actions speak louder than words!!! -str8 to the point -wants to play basketball w ur feelings probably -wants to live their life to fullest
Taurus Mars: -likes to touch rather than talk -process things slowly and steadily (not saying they’re slow, I meant by approach) -takes patience to understand them heh -might b a sugar daddy/sugar baby -obsessed with their things, so don’t b surprised how protective they can b abt u -so calm, so hard to read -keeps sexual activity like a secret, sh -might forget that sex is abt creating a bond, bc they are so focused on their own pleasure oopz
Gemini Mars: -so unpredictable omgknjvnsjvnd -like to makes things abt themselves sometimes -likes to learn, hit them with that new math problem u learned at school -double-texters imo -want someone to keep up w them -so easily distracted, and scattered o no -have a way w words oo la la -likes to talk over the phone, might have a phone sex kink (shrug) -prefers variety and to keep their options open -needs their space, does not like to rush into things
Cancer Mars: -will talk about having children -cute girls > hot girls -protective -huge homebody oo co zee -most likely to come off really cute!!! cute energy!!! -v smart, will make the effort to the things they want to achieve -hides in their shell, so ppl don’t see their true intentions -takes a while to get with these bad bois (eas e peas e? ya u tHouGht) -likes to observe the ones they like -might give u a quiz, n will see where the relationship is going from there (might make platonic or romantic move on u, and see ur response to it) -might come off harsh if they feel trapped -want to feel secure!!
Leo Mars: -anger e over everything pt 2 -lazy but are very goal-oriented -confident over the person they r trying to pursue (might not always b the case) -need to learn to slow their roll, 100/100 likely to go straight into flirting -likes attention n affection hehe -when they aren’t trying to seek a partner, they r busy doing something artistic -loves everything art -wants to make themselves n the ppl around them proud!!! -super stubborn grrr -loves the adrenaline they get when they r in love ahh, thats y they like falling love -enthusiastic, and warm makes them v cute partners -pretty much a top
Virgo Mars: -keeps it one hunneh -likes to pursue things n not make a big deal out of it, they know they did good -strives 4 success -polite conversations > flirting -calm, and quick-minded -dont get in their way bc they’ll just push u aside -has sharp-tongue (b careful when u french kiss them o no) -can turn calm into detached, ya theres a difference -hit them with that correct grammar and that advanced english -old-skool loverz -they remind me of….office sex -another earth mars that keeps things secret sh -prefer to do things thru experience
Libra Mars: -another air sign that has a way w words oo la la -commitment is not in their dictionary (ehehe jokes) -most likely to win ur heart (fUcK) -so charming, alluring, and kno how to grab ur attention -dont kno what they want -decisions r so frusTurAtInG -when they become weak when they are being pressured (sorry I’m exposing u like this) -struggles to be fair, what other ppl want and what they want -want to have fun, so rushing things will b ur downfall heh -like to b complimented and shown any type of attention -likes dirty talk probably, sexting may b?
Scorpio Mars: -hates losing, losing is not an option -prefer to have a few goals, so they can b focused in order to achieve them easily -possessive & controlling -will sit back n think whether u r worth the effort -digs deep into things -probably a stalker (love to research and find out things for themselves but that doesn’t mean u should b dishonest w them) -very hard to befriend -takes a while to gain their trust, lots of patience pls -pls proceed w caution -very good healers, very strong fighters -fascinated w occults, death, dangers, and things that r unanswered
Sagittarius Mars: -adventure seekers -change their wants everyday probably -always coming up w ideas -likes someone who keeps them entertained -not a cheesy/corny lover -fun > emotions -quick-witted, and r very fun to have a conversation w -funny!!!!! so funny!!!! -they r so spontaneous -always going thru new experiences, wisdom is key!!! -can never finish projects bc a new idea always pops up o no!! -will dip when things get 2 serious 2 soon
Capricorn Mars: -DADDDY KINKS I SWEAR TO GODDJSKJLF -sorry but reality is harsh and so are Cappys -goals come first -very serious & straight-forward, lets cut to the chase -work-oriented, especially when they r pursuing someone!!! -patient -can b cold when u c their bad side, move aside, they want to achieve -love and sex is a slow-burning pleasure yummy -they strive for success like the other earth signs -can control their anger -old-skool as heck -plans for the future!!! -make great spouses tbh -dry dark sense of humor ):<
Aquarius Mars: -rules? never heard of her -r not obvious lovers -prefer to b ur friend first!!! -they think instead of express, they r an air sign not a water (ahem) -can be very detached, anything expressive or physical can give them discomfort -reasonable, and calm -kink e -they like to experiment ((((; -idealists, they know what they abt to do to u -logic & reasoning, logic & reasoning -have a very headstrong approach to everythinnnnnnng -independent!!! quirky!!!! -”me, myself, and ego”
Pisces Mars: -things change their moods v easily n they won’t notice!!! -goes thru things unconsciously -will like u one day then won’t answer ur texts the next (wauw) -so indirect -if they want to pursue something they need to b emotionally committed ):< -go-with-the-flow -never know where their feelings r coming from when they express them (y r they sad? tHey DOnT KnOW) -things like money, power, security, etc will not tempt them -they r v soothing, feels like u r rocking in the ocean when they hug u (try it) -patience pls for this water sign (aside Cancer & Scorpio) -difficult, u r in for a ride!!!! -should meditate when angered
The Sun: represents the essence of your self, your will, your individuality, your vitality and your desire for power. More than any other planet, it represents who you are. It also symbolizes man in general.
The Moon: represents your emotions, your subconscious, your instincts, your habits and your memory. It also represents women in general.
Mercury: symbolizes your communication style, your reasoning skills, and the way you think.
Venus: represents the areas of your life concerned with love, seduction, beauty, material goods and the arts.
Mars: is the planet of desire and aggression. It represents your physical energy, your combativeness, your spirit of enterprise and your courage.
Jupiter: is the planet of expansion and good fortune. It represents growth, prosperity, abundance, wisdom, generosity and higher consciousness. Jupiter’s position in the sky map indicates where you are lucky.
Saturn: represents limitation, restriction, prudence, organization, endurance and discipline. It tells you where you have to deal with your fears - and also where you have ambition.
Uranus: represents originality, independence, spirit of rebellion, inventiveness, insight and all that is not foreseen.
I believe everybody can have a role in this society and that everybody can fight for others with the intention of helping them. So, this is gonna be about our potential to fight throught astrology BUT REMEMBER, YOU CAN FIGHT FOR EVERYTHING YOU WANT.
Mars in the 1st house\Aries: You have the potential to fight for the ones who can’t find their identidy and/or have self-issues.
Mars in the 2nd house\Taurus: You have the potential to fight for everybody safety, to fight for the value of everybody in the society and to fight for everybody needs.
Mars in the 3rd house\Gemini: You have the potential to fight for the ones who don’t have a voice or who are afraid to speak or the ones that don’t have a good environment.
Mars in the 4th house\Cancer: You have the potential to fight for a safe home that provides you all you need to grow and protection.
Mars in the 5th house\Leo: You have the potential to fight for the pleasures that everybody deserves and the moments of joy.
Mars in the 6th house\Virgo: You have the potential to fight for a job for everybody, for a routine, for global health and for the moment where everybody will work together.
Mars in the 7th house\Libra: You have the potential to fight for equality and fairness as well as good relationships with everybody.
Mars in the 8th house\Scorpio: You have the potential to fight for the things that most people are afraid to talk about and are considered taboo.
Mars in the 9th house\Sagittarius: You have the potential to fight for human rights and for everybody beliefs.
Mars in the 10th house\Capricorn: You have the potential to fight for the goals people want to reach and the things they want to conquer in life.
Mars in the 11th house\Aquarius: You have the potential to fight for the crowd and for the society wishes.
Mars in the 12th house\Pisces: You have the potential to fight for the ones who are exclude from the society.
While I was writing this I thought about how much Mars can help Saturn because Saturn represents our doubts and Mars can give us energy and power to overcome them.
What is the Stratospheric
Observatory for Infrared Astronomy, or SOFIA, up to?
Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy, as our flying telescope is called, is a Boeing 747SP aircraft
that carries a 2.5-meter telescope to altitudes as high as 45,000 feet.
Researchers use SOFIA to study the solar system and beyond using infrared
light. This type of light does not reach the ground, but does reach the
altitudes where SOFIA flies.
Recently, we used SOFIA to study water on Venus, hoping to
learn more about how
that planet lost its oceans. Our researchers used a powerful instrument on
SOFIA, called a spectrograph,
to detect water in its normal form and “heavy water,” which has an extra
neutron. The heavy water takes longer to evaporate and builds up over time. By
measuring how much heavy water is on Venus’ surface now, our team will be able
to estimate how much water Venus had when the planet formed.
We are also using SOFIA to create a detailed map of the Whirlpool
Galaxy by making multiple observations of the galaxy. This map will help us
understand how stars form from clouds in that galaxy. In particular, it will
help us to know if the spiral arms in the galaxy trigger clouds to collapse
into stars, or if the arms just show up where stars have already formed.
We can also use SOFIA to study methane on Mars. The Curiosity rover
has detected methane
on the surface of Mars. But the total amount of methane on Mars is unknown and
evidence so far indicates that its levels change significantly over time and
location. We are using SOFIA to search for evidence of this gas by mapping the Red
Planet with an instrument specially tuned to sniff out methane.
Next our team will use SOFIA to study Jupiter’s icy moon Europa, searching for evidence of possible water plumes detected by the Hubble Space Telescope. The plumes, illustrated in the artist’s concept above, were previously seen in images as extensions from the edge of the moon. Using SOFIA, we will search for water and determine if the plumes are eruptions of water from the surface. If the plumes are coming from the surface, they may be erupting through cracks in the ice that covers Europa’s oceans. Members of our SOFIA team recently discussed studying Europa on the NASA in Silicon Valley Podcast.
This is the view of Jupiter and its moons taken with SOFIA’s
light guide camera that is used to position the telescope.
i once read somewhere that the mars sign is more indicative of how you flirt or pursue your crush than your venus sign, and i agree. i think your mars sign is the energy you give your crush, or the vibe you give off to them. it’s your flirting energy/style. for example, if you have an earth mars, you’ll give off a more subtle vibe and will flirt in a subtle or subdued way, but also very caring. but a fire mars will give off a more dynamic or fiery vibe and will be very teasy and playful. water mars are very sarcastic while flirting but have a very comforting and kind vibe. air mars are extremely playful and will ask lots of questions, but can be hard to place or hard to tell their vibes, as it can be quite disconnected or confusing.