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Milky Way over an old ranch corral Featured Print

Milky Way over an old ranch corral

August 26, 2014 - The Milky Way over the old corral at the site of the 76 Ranch in the Frenchman Valley in Grasslands National Park, Saskatchewan, Canada. The foreground is lit by starlight, by the aurora brightening in the north, and by the occasional flashes of spotlights from naturalists down the valley spotting for nocturnal ferrets. The green bands in the sky are from natural airglow

© Alan Dyer/Stocktrek Images

The massive galaxy cluster MACS J0717 Featured Print

The massive galaxy cluster MACS J0717

This composite image shows the massive galaxy cluster MACS J0717.5+3745 (MACS J0717, for short), where four separate galaxy clusters have been involved in a collision, the first time such a phenomenon has been documented. Hot gas is shown in an image from the Chandra X-ray Observatory, and galaxies are shown in an optical image from the Hubble Space Telescope. The hot gas is color-coded to show temperature, where the coolest gas is reddish purple, the hottest gas is blue, and the temperatures in between are purple. MACS J0717 is located about 5.4 billion light-years from Earth. It is one of the most complex galaxy clusters ever seen.
The repeated collisions in MACS J0717 are caused by a 13-million-light-year-long stream of galaxies, gas, and dark matter, known as a filament, pouring into a region already full of matter. A collision between the gas in two or more clusters causes the hot gas to slow down. However, the massive and compact galaxies do not slow down as much as the gas does, and so move ahead of it. Therefore, the speed and direction of each cluster's motion, perpendicular to the line of sight, can be estimated by studying the offset between the average position of the galaxies and the peak in the hot gas

© Stocktrek Images

Space shuttle Discovery lifts off from Launch Pad 39A at Kennedy Space Center in Florida Featured Print

Space shuttle Discovery lifts off from Launch Pad 39A at Kennedy Space Center in Florida

Cape Canaveral, Florida, April 5, 2010 - Space shuttle Discovery lifts off from Launch Pad 39A at Kennedy Space Center in Florida, on the STS-131 mission. The crew will deliver the multi-purpose logistics module Leonardo, filled with supplies, a new crew sleeping quarters and science racks that will be transferred to the International Space Station's laboratories. The crew also will switch out a gyroscope on the stationa€™s truss, install a spare ammonia storage tank and retrieve a Japanese experiment from the stationa€™s exterior

© Stocktrek Images