To get you sufficiently pumped for the new Cosmos re-make, NASA has put together a stunning set of 43 cosmic images that are guaranteed to instill a sense of wonder and awe.
Top image: The Carina Nebula (NASA/Hubble).
Hosted by Neil deGrasse Tyson, the premier of the 13-episode series aired last night at 9:00 pm EST and was shown in no less than 70 countries. The remake comes 34 years after the original series hosted by Carl Sagan. NASA will be live-tweeting during the show, so be sure to follow @NASAGoddard and @NASAGoddardPix.
NASA made the announcement of its new Flickr gallery via Twitter:
Many of these images are old favorites, but they're certainly worth re-visiting. Here are some of best the gallery has to offer (images and captions via NASA/JPL/Hubble).
The storms at Saturn's north pole.
In this composite image, visible-light observations by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope are combined with infrared data from the ground-based Large Binocular Telescope in Arizona to assemble a dramatic view of the well-known Ring Nebula.
NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has caught Jupiter's moon Ganymede playing a game of "peek-a-boo." In this crisp Hubble image, Ganymede is shown just before it ducks behind the giant planet.
This computer-simulated image shows gas from a tidally shredded star falling into a black hole. Some of the gas also is being ejected at high speeds into space. Astronomers observed a flare in ultraviolet and optical light from the gas falling into the black hole and glowing helium from the stars's helium-rich gas expelled from the system.
Saturn's auroras put on a dazzling display of light.
On August 31, 2012 a long filament of solar material that had been hovering in the sun's atmosphere, the corona, erupted out into space at 4:36 p.m. EDT. The coronal mass ejection, or CME, traveled at over 900 miles per second. The CME did not travel directly toward Earth, but did connect with Earth's magnetic environment, or magnetosphere, causing aurora to appear on the night of Monday, September 3.
This scene is to the northwest of the recently named crater Magritte, in Mercury's south. The image is not map projected; the larger crater actually sits to the north of the two smaller ones. The shadowing helps define the striking "Mickey Mouse" resemblance, created by the accumulation of craters over Mercury's long geologic history.
At the turn of the 19th century, the binary star system Eta Carinae was faint and undistinguished. In the first decades of the century, it became brighter and brighter, until, by April 1843, it was the second brightest star in the sky, outshone only by Sirius (which is almost a thousand times closer to Earth). In the years that followed, it gradually dimmed again and by the 20th century was totally invisible to the naked eye.
The icy surface of Europa is shown strewn with cracks, ridges and "chaotic terrain," where the surface has been disrupted and ice blocks have moved around. New laboratory experiments show that water ice and frozen sulfur dioxide react even at the frigid temperatures of Europa. Because the reaction occurs without the aid of radiation, it could take place throughout the moon's thick ice layer—an outcome that would revamp current thinking about the chemistry and geology of this moon and perhaps others.
This image of Asia and Australia at night is a composite assembled from data acquired by the Suomi NPP satellite in April and October 2012. The new data was mapped over existing Blue Marble imagery of Earth to provide a realistic view of the planet.
Resembling looming rain clouds on a stormy day, dark lanes of dust crisscross the giant elliptical galaxy Centaurus A.
A spectacular new NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image reveals the heart of the Lagoon Nebula. Seen as a massive cloud of glowing dust and gas, bombarded by the energetic radiation of new stars, this placid name hides a dramatic reality.