January 03 | 2018
This question mark shaped feature that was seen Dec. 21 – 22 is an elongated coronal hole, which are areas of open magnetic field that appear darker in extreme ultraviolet light. These holes are the source of streaming plasma that we call solar wind. While this exercise is akin to seeing shapes in clouds, it is fun to consider what the sun might be asking? Perhaps what the new year will bring? Credit: NASA
This edge-on view of a galaxy located about 45 million light-years away, showcases its beautiful arms, which swirl like a whirlpool around its bright central region.
February 04 | 2018
Astronomers took this image as they were observing an extraordinary exploding star – a supernova – near the galaxy’s central yellow core! The star rapidly evolved from a supernova containing very little hydrogen to one that is hydrogen-rich — in just one year. This rarely observed metamorphosis was luminous at high energies and provides unique insight into the poorly understood final phases of massive stars. By studying similar galaxies we hold a scientific mirror up to our own, allowing us to build a better understanding of our galactic environment, which we cannot always observe, and of galactic behavior and evolution as a whole. Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA/D. Milisavljevic (Perdue University)