NASA's space shuttle Endeavour lands before dawn on Monday morning at Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
Endeavour's six-astronaut crew delivered spare parts and a new dark matter detector to the International Space Station during the shuttle's latest 15-day mission—Endeavour's 25th and final flight. Next up for the orbiter: being cleaned, mothballed, and retired to the California Science Center in Los Angeles.
A week after a 200-mile-an-hour (322-kilometer-an-hour) tornado destroyed much of Joplin, Missouri, a NASA satellite captured this false-color depiction of the destruction.
In this image, vegetation is red, buildings are blue, and the tornado's path is shown as a blue trail stretching from left to right.
Image courtesy ASTER/NASA
Like Looking in a Mirror?
Seen from a Chilean telescope, the galaxy NGC 6744 glows from 30 light-years away.
According to the European Southern Observatory, its dusty spiral arms closely resemble those of the Milky Way—making this picture something like a mirror image of our own galaxy.
Image courtesy ESO
An ultraviolet picture of the sun reveals strands of plasma being pushed and pulled above the star's surface.
The strands are superheated helium being tugged by competing magnetic forces within the sun, according to NASA, and were observed from May 23 through May 25.
Image courtesy SDO/NASA
Green Crystal "Rain"
Green crystals may be pouring onto the infant star HOPS-68 (indicated by the arrow in the telescope image at top), according to NASA.
Detected in infrared pictures from the Spitzer Space Telescope, the crystals are thought to have been shot out in jets by the protostar at a young age (illustrated by an artist in the middle picture) and are now falling back like rain (illustrated at bottom).