The Best Science Images – February 2015

Posted March 2nd, 2015 at 6:21 pm (UTC-5)
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This composite of x-ray and infrared images taken by the Chandra X-ray Observatory, released on 2/12/15, is supernova remnant G299.2-2.9 left over by a type Ia supernova.  It's located about 16,000 light years from earth.  (NASA/CXC/U.Texas)

NASA released this composite of x-ray and infrared images taken by the Chandra X-ray Observatory on Feb. 12. It shows the remnants of supernova G299.2-2.9, a type Ia supernova about 16,000 light years from earth. (NASA/CXC/U.Texas)

In this 2/5/15 photo, an operator controls a robot at a government facility in Hitachi, Ibaraki Prefecture, northeast of Tokyo.  In April, 2015, this snake-like robot, will be sent into the Unit 1 reactor at Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant to examine the damage caused by the March, 2011 earthquake and tsunami. (AP)

An operator controls a robot at a government facility in Hitachi, Ibaraki Prefecture, northeast of Tokyo on Feb. 5. In April, this snake-like robot will be sent into the Unit 1 reactor at Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant to examine the damage caused by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami. (AP)

NASA astronaut Barry Wilmore is shown here working outside the International Space Station on 2/21/15.  He and fellow spacewalker Terry Virts – who can be seen reflected in Wilmore’s visor – were preparing the ISS for future arrivals by U.S. commercial crew spacecraft.  (NASA)

NASA astronaut Barry Wilmore works outside the International Space Station on Feb. 21. He and fellow spacewalker Terry Virts –  seen reflected in Wilmore’s visor – were preparing the ISS for future arrivals by U.S. commercial crew spacecraft. (NASA)

Here’s an aerial view of SunEdison and TerraForm Power’s Regulus solar facility in Kern County, California that began generating solar energy on 2/18/15 (PRNewsFoto/SunEdison, Inc.)

Here’s an aerial view of SunEdison and TerraForm Power’s Regulus solar facility in Kern County, California that began generating solar energy on Feb. 18 (PRNewsFoto/SunEdison, Inc.)

Although it looks like the iconic “Have a Nice Day” smiley face, this is actually the galaxy cluster SDSS J1038+4849 as imaged by the Hubble Space Telescope.  The two eyes in the image, released on 2/10/15, are really two very bright galaxies and the smile lines are arcs caused by strong gravitational lensing. (NASA/ESA)

Although it looks like the iconic “Have a Nice Day” smiley face, this is actually the galaxy cluster SDSS J1038+4849 as imaged by the Hubble Space Telescope. The two eyes in the image, released on Feb. 10, are really two very bright galaxies and the smile lines are arcs caused by strong gravitational lensing. (NASA/ESA)

NOAA's Deep Space Climate Observatory Satellite which was carried aboard the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket is shown here lifting off from launch pad 40 at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Cape Canaveral, Florida 2/11/2015.  The new NOAA satellite will help keep tabs on solar storms and image Earth from nearly 1.6 million km away.  (Reuters)

NOAA’s Deep Space Climate Observatory Satellite was carried aboard the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket  launched Feb. 11 from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Cape Canaveral, Florida. The new NOAA satellite will help keep tabs on solar storms and image Earth from nearly 1.6 million km away. (Reuters)

The glow of the Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights, is seen in the horizon in the Kawartha Lakes region of southern Ontario 2/23/15.  The colorful Aurora Borealis, caused by charged particles from the sun, is rarely seen in Ontario.  (Reuters)

The glow of the Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights, is seen in the horizon in the Kawartha Lakes region of southern Ontario on Feb.23. The colorful Aurora Borealis, caused by charged particles from the sun, is rarely seen in Ontario. (Reuters)

A collection of SIM cards lie on a table in this photo illustration taken in Sarajevo on 2/24/15.  (Reuters)

A collection of SIM cards lie on a table in this photo illustration taken in Sarajevo on Feb. 24. (Reuters)

The Chandra X-ray Observatory imaged a newly discovered cosmic object in the galaxy NGC 2276.  The object pictured in this photo released on 2/24/15 may help provide answers to some long-standing questions about how black holes evolve and influence their surroundings.  (NASA/CXC/SAO/M.Mezcua/INAF/A.Wolter)

The Chandra X-ray Observatory imaged a newly discovered cosmic object in the galaxy NGC 2276. The object pictured in this photo released Feb. 24 may help provide answers to some long-standing questions about how black holes evolve and influence their surroundings. (NASA/CXC/SAO/M.Mezcua/INAF/A.Wolter)

Expectant parents often receive a photograph of their unborn child taken in utero with ultrasound scanning.  Now, an Estonian technology company has taken this momentous event a step further by offering life-sized 3D printed renderings instead of the traditional grainy photograph.   Here a company technician puts the finishing touch on a model. (Reuters)

Expectant parents often receive a photograph of their unborn child taken in utero with ultrasound scanning. Now, an Estonian technology company has taken this momentous event a step further by offering life-sized 3D printed renderings instead of the traditional grainy photograph. Here a company technician puts the finishing touch on a model. (Reuters)

This is an image of the dwarf planet Ceres taken by NASA’s Dawn spacecraft on 2/19/15 from a distance of nearly 46,000 kilometers.  It shows that the mysterious bright spot, noticed earlier by scientists, shares its basin location with a dimmer companion.  Dawn is preparing to rendezvous with Ceres and go into orbit 3/7/15 after a three-year journey. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA)

This is an image of the dwarf planet Ceres taken Feb. 19 by NASA’s Dawn spacecraft from a distance of nearly 46,000 kilometers. It shows that the mysterious bright spot, noticed earlier by scientists, shares its basin location with a dimmer companion. Dawn is preparing to rendezvous with Ceres and go into orbit March 7 after a three-year journey. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/UCLA/MPS/DLR/IDA)

 

 

 

 

 

Rick Pantaleo
Rick Pantaleo maintains the Science World blog and writes stories for VOA’s web and radio on a variety of science, technology and health topics. He also occasionally appears on various VOA programs to talk about the latest scientific news. Rick joined VOA in 1992 after a 20 year career in commercial broadcasting.

2 responses to “The Best Science Images – February 2015”

  1. Fascinating stuff. Here you’ll find imagery that moved us, inspired us, and shook us to our core, and a few that made us laugh in sheer amazement.