NASA  and  ESA  - “European Space Agency”

-  Space & Land Observatories & Satellites -

ISS - International Space Station




Space & Land Observatories



Interstellar Traveler: NASA's Voyager 1 Probe On 40,000-Year …



This still from a NASA video shows the Voyager 1 probe nearly 12 billion miles

 from the sun as it goes ...



Interstellar Traveler: NASA's Voyager 1 Probe On 40,000-Year Trek to Distant Star


Now that NASA's Voyager 1 probe has left the solar system, its next big spaceflight milestone comes with the flyby of another star — in 40,000 years.

Voyager 1 entered interstellar space in August 2012, nearly 35 years after blasting off, scientists announced Thursday (Sept. 12). As it leaves our solar system behind, the robotic spacecraft is streaking toward an encounter with a star called AC +79 3888, which lies 17.6 light-years from Earth.

"Voyager's on its way to a close approach with it in about 40,000 years," Voyager project manager Suzanne Dodd, of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., told reporters Thursday. "It's going to come within 1.7 light-years of this star — and it'll swing by it, and it will continue to orbit around the center of our Milky Way galaxy." [Voyager 1 in Interstellar Space: Complete Coverage]

The probe won't beam home any data from AC +79 3888's neighborhood, of course. Voyager 1's declining power supply will force the mission team to turn off its first instrument in 2020, and all of the science gear will stop working by 2025, Dodd said.

A star field image shows Voyager 1 spacecraft's next destination in the universe (circled). Accordin …

That time window still gives Voyager 1 a dozen years or so to study interstellar space up close, and researchers can't wait to see what the probe observes in this unexplored realm. ... 






Types of Observatories in Space – NASA & ESA

  • - Radio Observatories

  • - Microwave Observatories

  • - Infrared Observatories

  • - Visible Spectrum Observatories - is the Hubble Space Telescope (HST)

  • - Ultraviolet Observatories

  • - Extreme Ultraviolet Observatories

  • - X-ray Observatories

  • - Gamma-ray Observatories 



Hubble Deep Space Telescope



—The Hubble eXtreme Deep Field picture was made over 10 years from time exposures totaling 2 million seconds or 23 days. It shows about 5,500 galaxies in a patch of sky less than one-tenth the size of the full moon.



The most distant galaxy yet discovered



The Hubble Telescope Deep Space Imager


Extraordinary. Stunning. Fabulous. Dramatic. Amazing. Unprecedented. Exciting. Magnificent. Phenomenal. Awesome. Electrifying. Breathtaking. Pick a superlative and it has been used by people around the world to describe the beautiful images of objects in deep space recorded by the Hubble Space Telescope.

Hubble rode space shuttle Discovery up to space some 400 miles above Earth in 1990. From there, it has sent down extraordinary views of faraway places to excited astronomers on the ground. The stunning images have revealed the birth, death, and misfortunes of stars as well as a treasure trove of details about our planet neighbors in the Solar System. Through Hubble's eye we have watched vast sand dunes appear as the Martian polar ice cap melts away through summer. We've observed Neptune swept by giant hurricanes and Saturn twirling inside its delicate girdle of rings.

Hubble has allowed scientists to calculate the ages of star clusters far beyond our own galaxy and even an age for the entire Universe itself – 12 to 16 billion years. Awesome Hubble images of nebulae, emerging stars, and other celestial phenomena have shown us the magical wonder of deep space. Hubble has allowed us to look in on star formation in the Keyhole Nebula and the Eagle Nebula, which has been called the cradle of creation for new stars. And then there is the breathtaking view of millions of stars at the center of our own Milky Way galaxy.


New Hubble image takes us to the brink of the Big Bang






Hubble's History - Told by Hubble's Scientists ( 10 mins)

Hubblecast 41: Hubble's History Told by Hubble's Scientists

Hubble's history of scientific breakthroughs has made us think afresh about our Universe. But behind the astronomical successes is a rollercoaster ride of scientific and technical challenges going back decades.

The Hubblecast caught up with some of the key players in Hubble's history, including an astronaut, a Nobel Prize winner and one of the scientists who diagnosed Hubble's blurred vision in 1990. In this episode, narrated by veteran ESA scientist Bob Fosbury, they tell Hubble's story through their personal experiences.






Our Universe-Hubble Telescope Images ( 7 mins)

Hubble Secrets From Space (part 1 of 5)

Welcome to the Hubble Universe: Nebula & Galaxies: A Cosmic Journey ( 14:38 mins)

Nebula & Galaxies: A Cosmic Journey Through the Universe. A documentary film by Rhawn Joseph, Ph.D.







Chandra Observatory - X-Ray



Cassiopeia A
The supernova remnant that was

Chandra's "First Light" has been

 observed over time.


Tycho's Supernova Remnant




Chandra X-Ray Observatory -  Images :

Supernovas & Supernova Remnants


N132D  - The remnant of an exploded star in the Large Magellanic Cloud.




NASA’s Kepler Mission






This is a NASA illustration of the

 newly discovered 6-planet

"solar system" around a sun-like

 star  2000 light years away. 





NASA’s Kepler Mission at the Ames Research Center

Destination Innovation - Episode 1 – NASA’s Kepler Mission( 6 mins)

Destination Innovation is a new series that explores the research, science and other projects underway at the NASA Ames Research Center. Episode 1 focuses on the Kepler Mission, a space telescope that is revolutionizing our knowledge of planets outside our Solar System.

The mission's objective is to survey our region of the Milky Way galaxy to discover Earth-size and smaller planets in or near the habitable zone, a region where liquid water could exist on a planet's surface. Another goal is to determine how common or rare those planets are among the hundreds of billions of stars in our galaxy.!

NASA's Kepler Mission Discovery Summary, Dec. 2011 ( 3mins)

Exo-Plantes Scientists from NASA's Kepler mission have been busy recently. The team has announced the discovery of Kepler-22b, its first confirmed planet in the habitable zone of its solar system, 600 light years away. They have also been combing through light data captured by the telescope and have released the latest number of planetary candidates team members have identified. Staff and scientists also got together (along with a special guest!) recently to celebrate 1,000 days of science operations by the mission.

NASA's Kepler Mission Announces Latest Planetary Discovery 2011-    ( 1Hr: 04 mins)



The Kepler Mission's science team announced its latest finding at a press conference on Monday, Dec. 5, 2011. The team announced the confirmation of Kepler-22b, its first planet found in the "habitable zone," the region where liquid water could exist on a planet's surface. The planet is about 2.4 times the radius of Earth, orbits around a star similar to our sun and is located 600 light-years away. Scientists don't yet know if Kepler-22b has a predominantly rocky, gaseous or liquid composition, but its discovery is a step closer to finding Earth-like planets. The planet's host star belongs to the same class as our sun, called G-type, although it is slightly smaller and cooler.

Kepler also has discovered 1,094 new planet candidates, nearly doubling its previously known count. Since the last catalog was released in February, the number of planet candidates identified by Kepler has increased by 89 percent and now totals 2,326. Of these, 207 are approximately Earth-size, 680 are super Earth-size, 1,181 are Neptune-size, 203 are Jupiter-size and 55 are larger than Jupiter. The findings, based on observations conducted May 2009 to September 2010, show a dramatic increase in the numbers of smaller-size planet candidates.



Herschel Space Observatory



Herschel Space Observatory was launched by ESA the “European Space Agency “

The Herschel Space Observatory has provided one of the most detailed views yet of space up to 12 billion years back in time. The images reveal thousands of newly discovered galaxies in their early stages of formation, says astrophysicist Jason Glenn.

Equipped with three cameras, the Herschel Space Observatory was launched by the European Space Agency in May. The spacecraft—about one and one-half times the diameter of the Hubble Space Telescope—is orbiting nearly 1 million miles from Earth.

Glenn, an associate professor at the University of Colorado at Boulder, is a co-investigator on the Spectral and Photometric Imaging Receiver, or SPIRE instrument, riding aboard Herschel. The new images are being analyzed as part of the Herschel Multi-tiered Extragalactic Survey, or HerMES, which involves more than 100 astronomers from six countries.

Herschel is the first space observatory to make high-resolution images at sub-millimeter wavelengths, which are longer than visible and infrared light waves and shorter than radio waves. SPIRE was designed to look for emissions from clouds and dust linked to star-forming regions in the Milky Way and beyond, says Glenn. The most recent observations were made in the constellation Ursa Major, which includes the Big Dipper.





Microwave Cosmic Background Explorer





COBE Observatory


Microwave  Cosmic Background Explorer (COBE)


There are no microwave observatories in space right now nor are there any major microwave observatories planned lately know of.

The most recent microwave observatory was the Cosmic Background Explorer (COBE) which observed the entire sky making very precise measurements of the temperature of the "microwave background".

The sky is a source of microwaves in every direction, most often called the microwave background. This background is believed to be the remnant from the "Big Bang" scientists believe our universe began with. It is believed that a very long time ago all of space was scrunched together in a very small, hot ball. The ball exploded outward and became our universe as it expanded and cooled. Over the course of the past several billion years (the universe's actual age is still a matter of debate, but is believed to be somewhere between ten and twenty billion years), it has cooled all the way to just three degrees above zero. It is this "three degrees" that we measure as the microwave background.

COBE mapped out the entire microwave background, carefully measuring very small differences in temperatures from one direction to another. Astronomers have many theories about the beginning of the universe and their theories predict how the microwave background would look. The very precise measurements made by COBE eliminated a great many of the theories about the Big Bang.







Planck - launched by the “European Space Agency”

Planck has enormously increased capabilities with respect to its predecessors; they will allow it to distinguish details in the structure of the CMB that have been invisible so far, and bring it into sharp focus. In turn, this implies that the conditions of the Universe close to the Big Bang can be probed more accurately than ever before.

Some of the results obtained by Planck will be definitive: no future experiments will be able to improve on them. The reason is that the radiation emitted by the structures of matter created long after the Big Bang creates a background noise that limits the ability to measure variations in the temperature of the CMB. Planck will reach this natural limit, and will extract all the information that the CMB holds.

Planck’s measurements will provide the necessary foundation to zero in on more accurate theories and perhaps, surprise us with discoveries that may revolutionize the way we see our Universe.




Solar Dynamics Observatory









Solar Dynamics Observatory - or SDO

Launched on Feb. 11, 2010, the Solar Dynamics Observatory, or SDO, is the most advanced spacecraft ever designed to study the sun

NASA Solar Dynamics Observatory SDO Two Year Anniversary

 ( 3 mins)

"April 21, 2012 marked the two-year anniversary of the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) First Light press conference, where NASA revealed the first images taken by the spacecraft. This video highlights just some of the amazing events witnessed in SDO's second year.
Learn more about this video at:

"April 21, 2012 marked the two-year anniversary of the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) First Light press conference, where NASA revealed the first images taken by the spacecraft. This video highlights just some of the amazing events






Solar & Heliospheric Observatory







SOHO - The Solar & Heliospheric Observatory


SOHO, the Solar & Heliospheric Observatory, is a project of international collaboration between ESA and NASA to study the Sun from its deep core to the outer corona and the solar wind.

SOHO was launched on December 2, 1995. The SOHO spacecraft was built in Europe by an industry team led by prime contractor Matra Marconi Space (now EADS Astrium) under overall management by ESA. The twelve instruments on board SOHO were provided by European and American scientists.






Ulysses 2nd Orbit




Ulysses - It was designed to study the Sun


Ulysses is a decommissioned robotic space probe that was designed to study the Sun as a joint venture of NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA). The spacecraft was originally named Odysseus, because of its lengthy and indirect trajectory to near Solar distance. It was renamed Ulysses, the Latin translation of "Odysseus" at ESA's request in honour not only of Homer's mythological hero but also with reference to Dante's description in Dante's Inferno.[1] Originally scheduled for launch in May 1986 aboard the Space Shuttle Challenger. Due to the loss of Challenger, the launch of Ulysses was delayed until October 6, 1990 aboard Discovery (mission STS-41). The spacecraft's mission was to study the Sun at all latitudes. To do this required a major orbital plane shift. Due to velocity change limitations of the Shuttle and the Inertial Upper Stage (IUS), this was accomplished by using an encounter with Jupiter to effect the plane change instead of an engine burn. The need for a Jupiter encounter meant that Ulysses could not be powered by solar cells and was powered by a radioisotope thermoelectric generator (RTG) instead.

By February 2008, the power output from the RTG, which is generated by heat from the radioactive decay of plutonium-238, had decreased enough to leave insufficient power for internal heaters to keep the spacecraft's attitude control hydrazine fuel from freezing. The end of mission was at one point scheduled for July 1, 2008, but mission scientists came up with a method to keep the fuel liquid by conducting a short thruster burn every two hours, allowing the mission to continue.[2][3][4] The cessation of mission operations and deactivation or hibernation of the spacecraft was determined by the inability to prevent attitude control fuel from freezing.[2][5] The last day for mission operations on Ulysses was June 30, 2009.[6][7] This was a full year after the most recent previously announced mission end date. The scheduled end of mission in 2009 was the fourth time that the end of the spacecraft's mission had been scheduled.[2] The last scheduled ground station pass of the mission was over the Madrid Deep Space Network 70m ground station (DSS-63) from around 15:35 to 20:20 UTC. There were no decommissioning engineering tests on the spacecraft.




Artist's conception of LISA spacecraft




LISA - Laser Interferometer Space Antenna – NASA

( Originally)

The Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA) is a planned space mission to detect and accurately measure gravitational waves from astronomical sources. LISA was originally conceived as a joint effort between the United States space agency NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA). However, on April 8th 2011, NASA announced that it would likely be unable to continue its LISA partnership with the European Space Agency, due to funding limitations. ESA is planning to begin a full revision of the mission's concept, renamed the New Gravitational wave Observatory (NGO), with selection of the winning Cosmic Vision L-class mission candidate due in February 2012.

If launched, LISA will be the first dedicated space-based gravitational-wave detector; it will measure gravitational waves by using laser interferometry to monitor the fluctuations in the relative distances between three spacecraft, arranged in an equilateral triangle with 5-million-kilometer arms, and flying along an Earth-like heliocentric orbit.[4] Passing gravitational waves create oscillations in the inter-spacecraft distances, as measured by light, in directions transverse to the direction of wave propagation. LISA will be sensitive to waves in the frequency band between 0.03 milliHertz to 100 milliHertz, including signals from massive black holes that merge at the center of galaxies, or that consume smaller compact objects; from binaries of compact stars in our Galaxy; and possibly from other sources of cosmological origin, such as the very early phase of the Big Bang, and speculative astrophysical objects like cosmic strings and domain boundaries.

2011 Mission changes - Postponed/Cancelled?

On April 8th 2011, it was announced in a press release made through NASA's LISA Project Office,[2] that, based on the United States President's Fiscal Year 2012 Budget Request,[9] NASA would likely be unable to continue participating in the LISA project. As a result, the European Space Agency has ended its study of LISA as a partnership at the scale initially proposed in the New Worlds New Horizons decadal survey. Revised mission concepts will be considered in a selection process commencing in February 2012.

A future minor role for NASA in the ESA-led mission has not been ruled out. NASA's Astrophysics Division plans to continue base funding for the LISA study team through FY11, assuming not-larger-than-anticipated cuts from the U.S. Congress. 




The AMS-02 experiment is a state-of-the-art particle physics detector that is constructed, tested and operated by an international team composed of 56 institutes from 16 countries and organized under United States Department of Energy (DOE) sponsorship.



About 1,000 cosmic rays are recorded by the instrument per second, generating about one GB/sec of data. This data is filtered and compressed to about 300 KB/sec for download to the operation centre POCC at CERN. In July 2012,

 it was reported that AMS-02 had

 observed over 18 billion cosmic rays





AMS-02 installed on the ISS.




The Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer –

Measures Cosmic Rays

The Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer, also designated AMS-02, is a particle physics experiment module that is mounted on the International Space Station. It is designed to search for various types of unusual matter by measuring cosmic rays. Its experiments will help researchers study the formation of the Universe and search for evidence of dark matter as well as investigate antimatter. The principal investigator is Nobel laureate particle physicist Samuel Ting. After final testing at ESA's European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC) facility in the Netherlands, delivery to the Kennedy Space Center in Florida took place on 26 August 2010.The launch of Space Shuttle Endeavour flight STS-134 carrying AMS-02 took place on 16 May 2011, and the spectrometer was installed on 19 May 2011. In July 2012, it was reported that AMS-02 had recorded over 18 billion cosmic ray events since its installation.

The Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS-02) is a state-of-the-art particle physics detector designed to operate as an external module on the International Space Station. It will use the unique environment of space to study the universe and its origin by searching for antimatter, dark matter while performing precision measurements of cosmic rays composition and flux. The AMS-02 observations will help answer fundamental questions, such as "What makes up the universe's invisible mass?" or "What happened to the primordial antimatter?"

Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer ( 9:22 mins)

The Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS) is flying to the station on STS-134. The AMS experiment is a state-of-the-art particle physics detector being operated by an international team composed of 60 institutes from 16 countries and organized under United States Department of Energy (DOE) sponsorship. The AMS Experiment will use the unique environment of space to advance knowledge of the universe and lead to the understanding of the universe's origin.




Spitzer Space Telescope - NASA


Infrared Satellite Images



Spitzer Space Telescope - NASA

  - Studying the Universe in Infrared


First Infrared Satellite

As NASA prepared to issue this invitation for proposals, a rocket was launching the first infrared telescope into space. The Infrared Astronomical Satellite, an Explorer-class satellite designed to conduct the first infrared survey of the sky, was a collaborative effort between the United States, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.






Spitzer + Herschel: The Galactic Center Revisited [720p] – Frequency




The Galactic Center Revisited (Gallery Explorer) NASA ( 3 mins)

Hiding behind the constellations Sagittarius and Scorpius is the center of our own Milky Way galaxy, over 25,000 light years away. This patch of sky is mostly dark in visible light, shrouded by dust clouds that lie between us and the Galactic center. But the infrared vision of NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope sees through the dust showing us this strange and tumultuous region.




Bursts of Gamma Rays from Center of Galaxy






Fermi Telescope


Fermi Telescope discovers new Giant Structure in our Galaxy (w/ Video)

From end to end, the newly discovered gamma-ray bubbles extend 50,000 light-years, or roughly half of  the Milky Way's diameter, as shown in this illustration. Hints of the bubbles' edges were first observed

 in X-rays (blue) by ROSAT, a Germany-led mission operating in the 1990s. The gamma rays mapped

by Fermi (magenta) extend much farther from the galaxy's plane. 


A Galactic Center Mystery – Fermi Lab Map ( 2 mins)

- Galactic “Fermi Bubbles” - The Milky Way's Mysterious Gamma Ray Lobes



Interstellar Boundary Explorer -

 IBEX Spacecraft



IBEX is collecting Energetic Neutral Atom (ENA) emissions that are traveling through the solar system to Earth that cannot be measured by conventional telescopes. These ENAs are created on the boundary of our Solar System by the interactions between solar wind particles and interstellar medium particles.

On the average IBEX-Hi detects about 500 particles a day, and IBEX-Low, less than 100. By 2012, over 100 scientific papers related to IBEX were published, described by the PI as "an incredible scientific harvest".


Initial interpretations suggest that "the interstellar environment has far more influence on structuring the heliosphere than anyone previously believed".




"Our discovery of changes over six months in the IBEX ribbon and other neutral atoms propagating in from the edge of our solar system show that the interaction of our  Sun and the galaxy is amazingly dynamic"

—D. McComas, IBEX principal investigator





Interstellar Boundary Explorer (IBEX) - a NASA Satellite


Interstellar Boundary Explorer (IBEX) is a NASA satellite that is making a map of the boundary between the Solar System and interstellar space. The mission is part of NASA's Small Explorer program and launched with a Pegasus-XL rocket on October 19, 2008, at 17:47:23 UTC.

Results from IBEX have repeatedly shocked the scientific community and overturned old theories.[4] The first shock came when it revealed a narrow ribbon of energetic neutral atom (ENA) emission.[4] Then it showed shifts over time in this band. Another surprise came when no bow shock was found.[5] The repercussions for overturning the bow shock theory are huge, because decades of research are based on that concept.

The design and operation of the mission is being led by the Southwest Research Institute, with the Los Alamos National Laboratory and the Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Center serving as co-investigator institutions responsible for the IBEX-Hi and IBEX-Lo sensors respectively. The Orbital Sciences Corporation manufactured the spacecraft bus and was the location for spacecraft environmental testing. The nominal mission baseline duration was two years to observe the entire solar system boundary. This was completed by 2011 and its mission was extended to 2013 to continue observations.

IBEX is in a sun-oriented spin-stabilized orbit around the Earth.[1] In June 2011, IBEX was shifted to a new more efficient orbit.[6] It does not come as close to the Moon in the new orbit, and expends less fuel to maintain its position.


Scientists Puzzled by Region Outside Solar System - by Ibex Spacecraft

(AP Feb 2012) — A glimpse beyond our solar system reveals the neighborhood just outside the sun's influence is different and stranger than expected, scientists reported Tuesday. One oddity is the amount of oxygen. There are more oxygen atoms floating freely in the solar system than in the immediate interstellar space, or the vast region between stars. Scientists were unsure why, but they said it's possible some of the life-supporting element could be hidden in dust or ice.

"We discovered this big puzzle —
that the matter just outside of our solar system doesn't look like the material inside," said David McComas of the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio, Texas.

The discovery came from
NASA's Interstellar Boundary Explorer spacecraft, which launched in 2008 to study the chaotic boundary where the solar wind from the sun clashes with cold gases from interstellar space.

Circling 200,000 miles above Earth, the
Ibex spacecraft spots particles streaming into the solar system. A protective bubble surrounding around the sun and planets prevents dangerous cosmic radiation from seeping through, but neutral particles can pass freely, allowing Ibex to map their distribution. The presence of less oxygen outside the solar system should not have any bearing on the search for Earth-like planets, scientists involved in the Exo-planet hunt said.

There's plenty of oxygen in all the stars in the galaxy and in the material out of which stars and planets form, Geoff Marcy of University of California, Berkeley said in an email. While Ibex probes the edge of the solar system from Earth orbit, NASA's long-running, nuclear-powered twin Voyager spacecraft are at the fringes. Launched in 1977, the spacecraft have been exploring the solar system boundary since 2004.

Scientists have said it'll be months or years before Voyager 1 exits the solar system and becomes the first manmade probe to cross into interstellar space. 

Scientists puzzled by region outside solar system ( 2 mins)


Local Interstellar Cloud >>>?





other Space Observatories >>


      First USA Satellite in Space




Werner von Braun & President John F, Kennedy




Explorer 1 - First USA Satellite - January 1958


Explorer 1 (1958 Alpha 1) was the first Earth satellite of the United States, launched as part of its participation in the International Geophysical Year. The mission followed the first two Earth satellites the previous year, the Soviet Union's Sputnik 1 and 2, beginning the Cold War Space Race between the two nations.

Explorer 1 was launched on January 31, 1958 at 22:48 Eastern Time (equal to February 1, 03:48 UTC) atop the first Juno booster from LC-26 at the Cape Canaveral Missile Annex, Florida. It was the first spacecraft to detect the Van Allen radiation belt,[6] returning data until its batteries were exhausted after nearly four months. It remained in orbit until 1970, and has been followed by more than 90 scientific spacecraft in the Explorer series.









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Earth- Directed Satellites


      Earth- Directed Satellites


Suomi NPP - NASA



Suomi NPP has orbited the Earth more than 5,000 times and begun returning images and data that provide critical weather and climate measurements of the complex Earth system. "The Suomi NPP flight and ground teams have spent the first year making sure the spacecraft, instruments and data products are working well.




The northern auroral oval is centered on the north geomagnetic pole currently located in northern Canada. Credit: NASA



Storms, Ozone, Vegetation and More: NASA-NOAA Suomi NPP Satellite Returns First Year of Data


The Length of Hurricane Sandy

Sattelite Image of Hurricane Sandy


Western U.S. High Mountain Blazes


The Lights of London




Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership (Suomi NPP) - NASA


Suomi NPP is NASA's next Earth-observing research satellite. It is the first of a new generation of satellites that will observe many facets of our changing Earth.


Understanding, monitoring, and predicting the course of long-term climate change AND short-term weather conditions remain tasks of profound importance. Economic competitiveness, human health and welfare, and global security all depend in part on our ability to understand and adapt to global environmental changes.

Over the last dozen years, NASA has launched a series of satellites – known collectively as the Earth Observing System (EOS) – that has provided critical insights into the dynamics of the entire Earth system: clouds, oceans, vegetation, ice, solid Earth and atmosphere. Now NASA is helping to create a new generation of satellites to extend and improve upon the Earth system data records established by EOS.


A Satellite photo taken of Monday morning’s aurora?


The Earth-observing research satellite called Suomi National Polar-orbiting Partnership (Suomi NPP) snapped this view of the aurora borealis from 512 miles up early on the morning of October 8, 2012.


Infrared Sounder on Suomi NPP Starts its Mission



The Cross-track Infrared Sounder (CrIS) is designed to give scientists more refined information about Earth's atmosphere and improve weather forecasts and our understanding of climate, has started sending its data back to Earth.


OMPS Continues More Than 30 Years of Ozone Data



This shows the thickness of the Earth's ozone layer on January 27th from 1982 to 2012. This atmospheric layer protects Earth from dangerous levels of solar ultraviolet radiation.









Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE)



Gravity anomaly map from GRACE



GRACE Twin Satellites - Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (  mins)

 - Ocean Bottom pressure from the Gravity Recovery And Climate Experiment


The Gravity Recovery And Climate Experiment (GRACE), a joint mission of NASA and the German Aerospace Center, has been making detailed measurements of Earth's gravity field since its launch in March 2002.

Gravity is determined by mass. By measuring gravity, GRACE shows how mass is distributed around the planet and how it varies over time. Data from the GRACE satellites is an important tool for studying Earth's ocean, geology, and climate.




Global Gravity Anomaly Animation over land from GRACE




Global Gravity Anomaly Animation over oceans from GRACE



The GRACE twin satellites, launched 17 March 2002, are making detailed measurements of Earth's gravity field and are revolutionizing investigations about Earth's water reservoirs, large-scale solid earth changes, ice cover, and oceans. To aid in the interpretation of gravity change over the oceans, the GRACE Tellus project provides ocean bottom pressure (OBP) derived from the GRACE satellites. OBP is the sum of the mass of the atmosphere and ocean in a 'cylinder' above the seafloor.



Play List




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ISS - International Space Station



ISS - The Early Stages -

since Nov. 20, 1998,










ISS - International Space Station

International Space Station since Nov. 20, 1998,

The construction of the International Space Station began in 1998. In the project participate space agencies from USA, Russia, Japan, Canada, Europe, Brazil and Italy.


Space Station - Building and Assembly - Animation


This animation depicts the assembly of the International Space Station since Nov. 20, 1998, with the delivery of the Zarya module, through May 16, 2011, with the delivery of the EXPRESS Logistics Carrier-3 and the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer. The space station is a collaborative product of five space agencies, representing 15 nations, and has been continuously inhabited by humans since November 2000.


The AssemblyAnimation On YouTube ( 3 mins):


This animation depicts the assembly of the International Space Station since Nov. 20, 1998, with the delivery of the Zarya module, through May 16, 2011, with the delivery of the EXPRESS Logistics Carrier-3 and the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer. The space station is a collaborative product of five space agencies, representing 15 nations, and has been continuously inhabited by humans since November 2000.


Photo Gallery & Videos








International Space Station,

 Orbit height is 230 miles (370 km)





Current position of ISS International Space Station on the world map in its

 Earth orbit. -  And a Complete trip

around every 92 mins. - at averg.

speed of 27 744 km/h.




Hey! What's Space Station Freedom?  - For Kids ( 28 mins)


This video,has been produced as a classroom tool geared toward middle school children. There are three segments to this video.... through models, computer animation, and actual footage, what Space Station Freedom is, who is involved in its construction, how it is to be built, what each of the modules on the station is for, and how long and in what sequence this construction will occur. There is a brief animation segment where, through the use of cartoons, the children fly up to Space Station Freedom as astronauts, perform several experiments and are given a tour of the station, and fly back to Earth. Space Station Freedom will take four years to build and will have three lab modules, one from ESA and another from Japan, and one habitation module for the astronauts to live in. Jan. 1992.


Higher Altitude Improves Station's Fuel Economy


For most of the last decade, as astronauts and cosmonauts orbited the Earth aboard the International Space Station they were circling the globe at an altitude of approximately 220 statute miles, or about 350 kilometers.

When the European Space Agency’s resupply ship Johannes Kepler, known also as Automated Transfer Vehicle 2 (ATV2) arrives at the space station later this month, it will bring the fuel needed to boost the station to its normal planned altitude of 248 miles, or 400 kilometers.

The main benefit of raising the station’s altitude will be to cut the amount of fuel needed to keep it there by more than half.


ISS Orbit Position and Altitude


ISS is moving at low Earth orbit in an altitude of about 350 km and can be observed with a naked eye. Its height varies from 319.6 to 346.9 kilometers because of atmospheric resistance and correction in its orbit. Every day ISS loses average 100 meters of its altitude, but the altitude of the orbit is corrected periodically. - ISS makes one complete trip around the Earth for about 92 minutes, traveling with average speed of 27 744 km/h.


Every day the Station completes 15.7 orbits around the Earth.


ISS has been inhabited continuously from the 2th November 2000, when the Expedition 1 stepped on board.


Current position of ISS International Space Station on the world map in its Earth orbit.



 ISS Flying over the Earth Auroras 


 ISS Flying over the Earth Lightning



 ISS Flying over the Earth Auroras & Lightning / Jonn Serrie ( 8 mins)  !!!!!!!!




Awesome stunning view from Space to Earth. Night fly by ISS,
more Jonn Serrie music on Youtube   "Aurora Borealis" Pass over the United States at Night Northern Lights Madacasgar "Aurora Australis" Central Asia to Russia Europe to Indian Ocean New Zealand to Pacific Ocean Northwest US to South America Aurora Australis over Australia North America to South America Tansania to Southern etc.






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Ground-Based Observatories


      Ancient Observatories


Ancient Observatory



"El Caracol" observatory temple at

 Chichen Itza, Mexico.


Stonehenge - Observatory



Chanquillo Peru- Observatory




List of Astronomical Observatories


Astronomical observatories are mainly divided into four categories:


  * Space based

- * Airborne

  * Ground based and

  * Underground based.


Extreme Observatories


Places of Astronomical Interest in Australia





S.E.T.I. Observatories


Arecibo - Puerto Rico


National Radio Astronomy Observatory - Socorro County, New Mexico, USA


The Allen Telescope Array






SETI Institute


Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence


The search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI) is the collective name for a number of activities undertaken to search for intelligent extraterrestrial life. SETI projects use scientific methods in this search. For example, electromagnetic radiation is monitored for signs of transmissions from civilizations on other worlds.Some of the most well-known projects are run by Harvard University, the University of California, Berkeley, and the SETI Institute. In 1995, the United States federal government ceased funding to SETI projects, forcing them to turn to private funding to continue the search, though in recent years government funding of SETI has resumed at modest levels.

There are great challenges in searching the cosmos for signs of intelligent life, including their identification and interpretation. SETI projects use the best available scientific knowledge to conduct experiments, which has traditionally led to searches for electromagnetic radiation emitted by advanced technologies.


Arecibo Observatory - Puerto Rico


Very Large Array - Socorro County, New Mexico, USA


The Allen Telescope Array - Hat Creek , California


The Allen Telescope Array is located at the  Hat Creek Radio Observatory  





World's Space-Observatory Mecca -

at Southern Hemisphere - Chile




ESO Headquarters in Garching, Germany

- a 15 Countries Organization and Created in 1962



Chile's Atacama Desert - World's Space-Observatory Mecca


The Atacama Desert's dry climate and 5,600-meter (about 3.5 miles) altitude make it a unique and ideal mecca for both ground-based reflector and far-infrared astronomy. The southern hemisphere skies is were the most stars appear... And, they have also the clearest Skies, which makes it optimal for the world's largest telescopes and with the latest technologies, .


ESO Headquarters in Garching, Germany


While ESO's headquarters are located in Germany, all of its telescopes and observatories are in the north of Chile, where the organisation operates some of the world's largest and most advanced ground-based astronomical facilities:

  • La Silla, which hosts the New Technology Telescope,

  • Paranal, where the Very Large Telescope is located,

  • Llano de Chajnantor, which hosts the APEX (Atacama Pathfinder Experiment) submillimetre telescope and where ALMA, the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array, is currently under construction.

These are among the best locations for astronomical observations in the southern hemisphere


Zoomed-in image from the Dark Energy Camera of the barred spiral galaxy NGC 1365, in the Fornax cluster of galaxies, which lies about 60 million light years

from Earth.



The Dark Energy Camera - Cerro Tololo
Inter-American Observatory in Chile


Dark Energy Survey Collaboration




Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory (CTIO) - Chile


570-Megapixel Camera to Study Dark Energy at “The Dark Energy Camera" 

The first images from a phone-booth-sized 570-megapixel camera mounted on a telescope in Chile were released Monday as part of a five-year survey to help scientists figure out why the universe is speeding up.

The Dark Energy Camera is able to see light from over 100,000 galaxies up to 8 billion light years away in each snapshot. It has an array of 62 charged-coupled devices.

The camera CCDs are constructed specifically to be sensitive to longer wavelengths of light (the red end of the spectrum) from distant galaxies and stars, which will help astronomers probe the nature of dark energy and the accelerating expansion of the universe.

The fact that the expansion of the universe is accelerating, rather than slowing down, remains one of the biggest mysteries of physics. According to Einstein’s theory of relativity, gravity should lead to a slowing of the expansion.

The speedup is thought to be due to an exotic form called dark energy that fills approximately 75 percent of the universe and exerts a gravitational force that works in opposition to gravity. But what, precisely, dark energy is and why it’s causing cosmic expansion, is unclear.

Over the next five years, the Dark Energy Camera at the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Chile will create detailed color images of one-eighth of the sky to discover and measure 300 million galaxies, 100,000 galaxy clusters and 4,000 supernovae.

Members of the Dark Energy Survey will use the images to study the nature of dark energy via handful of technique that allow them to measure the expansion of the universe and the forces at play.

Scientists first learned of the accelerating expansion in 1998 thanks to studies of supernovae light that appeared to have been stretched on its way to Earth, suggesting the universe had also stretched.

The findings have been backed up with studies of galaxies and galaxy clusters showing they are receding from each other.

The Dark Energy Survey will, for the first time, make all four techniques used to probe dark energy possible in a single experiment. …



La Silla Observatory - Altitude 2,400 m. - Since 1969  - There are a total of 15 different tasks Telescopes




The HARPS instrument team at the La Silla Observatory in Chile recently discovered a slew of 50 Exoplanets in one go. Of these 50, there is one that is particularly interesting as it may be able to support life




The Helix Nebula: -

obtained at the Max Plank Observatory -

 Here is one using the Wide Field Imager

at the European Southern
Observatory at La Silla (visible light).




La Silla ESO Observatories - Chile


La Silla, in the southern part of the Atacama desert, 600 km north of Santiago de Chile and at an altitude of 2400 metres is the home of ESO's original observing site.  - Here ESO operates three major telescopes: the 3.6m telescope, the New Technology Telescope (NTT), and the 2.2-m Max-Planck-ESO telescope. They are equipped with state of the art instruments either built completely by ESO or by external consortia, with substantial contribution by ESO.

La Silla also hosts national telescopes, such as the 1.2-m Swiss Telescope and the 1.5-m Danish Telescope.




60 ESO La Silla Observatory (Chile)  ( 10 mins)

"Type of observatory  - Optical; infrared

The La Silla Observatory, 600 km north of Santiago de Chile and at an altitude of 2400 metres, has been an ESO stronghold since the 1960s. Here, ESO operates several of the most productive 4-metre class telescopes in the world. La Silla remains at the forefront of astronomy, and is the second-most scientifically productive in ground-based astronomy (after ESO's Very Large Telescope)."


Planet Gliese 581 e orbits its host star located only 20.5 light-years away in the constellation Libra (the Scales) — in just 3.15 days. With only 1.9 Earth-masses, it is the least massive exoplanet ever detected and is, very likely, a rocky planet.


An Astronomical Success Story: The La Silla Observatory ( 5 mins)


SOcast 5: An Astronomical Success Story - ESO's First Observatory Celebrates 40th Anniversary. -
ESO's La Silla Observatory, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary, became the largest astronomical observatory of its time. It led Europe to the frontline of astronomical research, and is still one of the most scientifically productive in ground-based astronomy.



ALMA Radio Telescope Array - Chile





ALMA Radio Telescope Array - Chile

The Atacama Large Millimeter/sub-millimeter Array (ALMA)


An international partnership of Europe, North America and East Asia in cooperation with the Republic of Chile, is the largest astronomical project in existence. ALMA will be a single telescope of revolutionary design, composed initially of 66 high precision antennas located on the Chajnantor Plateau, 5000 meters altitude in northern Chile.



Alma telescope in Chile battles Extreme Weather





The "Mirror" at VLT  - Paranal



The VLT has made an undisputed impact

on observational astronomy. It is the

most productive individual ground-based facility, and results from the VLT have led to the publication of an average of more than one peer-reviewed scientific paper per day. VLT contributes greatly to making

ESO the most productive ground-based observatory in the world. The VLT has stimulated a new age of discoveries, with several notable scientific firsts, including the first image of an extrasolar planet - or ExoPlanets.



Paranal Observatory - Very Large Telescope (VLT) - Chile


The world's most Advanced Visible-light Astronomical Observatory - ESO


The Very Large Telescope array (VLT) is the flagship facility for European ground-based astronomy at the beginning of the third Millennium. It is the world's most advanced optical instrument, consisting of four Unit Telescopes with main mirrors of 8.2m diameter and four movable 1.8m diameter Auxiliary Telescopes.

The telescopes can work together, to form a giant ‘interferometer’, the ESO Very Large Telescope Interferometer, allowing astronomers to see details up to 25 times finer than with the individual telescopes. The light beams are combined in the VLTI using a complex system of mirrors in underground tunnels where the light paths must be kept equal to distances less than 1/1000 mm over a hundred metres. With this kind of precision the VLTI can reconstruct images with an angular resolution of milliarcseconds, equivalent to distinguishing the two headlights of a car at the distance of the Moon.



Paranal Observatory, home of the Very Large Telescope,

a cluster of four large (8.2 meter diameter) telescopes.



The 8.2m diameter Unit Telescopes can also be used individually. With one such telescope, images of celestial objects as faint as magnitude 30 can be obtained in a one-hour exposure. This corresponds to seeing objects that are four billion (four thousand million) times fainter than what can be seen with the unaided eye.
The large telescopes are named
Antu, Kueyen, Melipal and Yepun


VLT (Very Large Telescope) HD Timelapse Footage (  8 mins)






Mauna Kea Observatory - Hawaii









Excellent quality large photos of Deep Space >;area=showposts;u=4075



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Space Related - Super Computer









NASA’s “Pleiades” Fastest Super Computer

NASA's Pleiades Supercomputer and the Galactic Filaments..





The Barcelona Supercomputer Center

Spain Builds Supercomputer With Cellphone Chips

Spanish Supercomputing Network

The Spanish Supercomputing Network (RES, Red Española de Supercomputación) is a scientific network created by the Spanish Education Ministry. The network is composed by several supercomputers distributed over Spain. This institution tries to provide the computing resources needed by researchers in Spain and Europe.

MareNostrum is a supercomputer in the Barcelona Supercomputing Center, the second most powerful in Spain.







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