This supercomputer simulation of magnetic field loops on the sun reveal in unprecedented detail how solar winds form and swirl. The colours represent magnetic field strength from weak (blue) to strong (red).
A shimmering, multicoloured beacon — like some kind of cosmic lighthouse — this is the Egg Nebula as photographed by the Hubble Space Telescope. The bright shafts of light are pumped out as a central star dies, creating the beautiful colours as they pass through the clouds of gas and dust.
The Soyuz TMA-15M rocket launches from Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Sunday, 23rd Novmeber. The craft will carry three astronauts up to the International Space Station where they'll undertake a five and a half month mission. And install a coffee machine.
This radar image of Tokyo was acquired by the European Space Agency's Sentinel-1A satellite earlier this year. The data is so accurate that it can monitor ground movements down to a few millimetres, which helps urban planners know where they can and can't build.
A spectral sunset over a creepy war plane. Airmen from the US 1st Special Operations Aircraft Maintenance Squadron work on an AC-130U Spooky Gunship at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar in California on November 3rd.
The Sahara desert, over southeastern Algeria, sure looks unwelcoming. With humans unwilling to spend weeks surveying such a space, satellites do the job for them. Perhaps unsurprisingly, they're revealing evidence of soil degradation and overwhelming dehydration—a result of the area seeing less than 10 mm of rainfall per year. [ESA]
Galaxy ESO 137-001 tears through its neighbours in the vast Norma cluster, in the process losing most of the gas it needed to make its generation of stars. Stellar suicide, in other words. [ESO/M. Fumagalli via New Scientist]
This photo from November 5th was taken during a NASA mission called Operation IceBridge, the goal of which is to survey polar ice. But it also captured the aircraft carrier USS Constellation (CV-64), a Kitty Hawk-class supercarrier being towed by a comparatively tiny tugboat – destined for demolition.
Saturn's two largest moons, Rhea and Titan, line up for the Cassini orbiter. Rhea's pock-marked surface provides a beautiful contrast to the golden glow of Titan, even though they're both actually made up of largely similar material.
This may only be a shot of military vehicles being loaded into a C-5M Super Galaxy, but the dramatic lighting, shiny ramp and crisp details of the aircraft interior make it feel like a vision from the future.