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Space images of the week

A compilation of the best space photos and images from earthsky.org for the week of January 14-18.

We had so many amazing new pictures and images over the past week (January 14-18, 2013) that they were worth showing to you again, but this time, all at once!

This image, taken with NASA’s Spitzer infrared space telescope, shows the mysterious galactic cloud, seen as the black object on the left. The galactic center is the bright spot on the right. Credit: NASA/Spitzer/Benjamin et al., Churchwell et al.

Here’s the story: http://earthsky.org/science-wire/a-cloudy-mystery

This artist’s impression shows how ULAS J1120+0641, a very distant quasar powered by a black hole with a mass two billion times that of the Sun, may have looked. This quasar is the most distant yet found and is seen as it was just 770 million years after the Big Bang. This object is by far the brightest object yet discovered in the early Universe. Credit: ESO/M. Kornmesser

Here’s the story: http://earthsky.org/science-wire/astronomers-discover-the-largest-structure-in-the-universe

This evocative image shows a dark cloud where new stars are forming along with a cluster of brilliant stars that have already emerged from their dusty stellar nursery. Credit: Credit: ESO/F. Comeron

Here’s the story: http://earthsky.org/science-wire/light-from-the-darkness

This wide-field view shows a dark cloud where new stars are forming along with cluster of brilliant stars that have already burst out of their dusty stellar nursery. Credit:ESO/Digitized Sky Survey 2. Acknowledgement: Davide De Martin

Here’s the story: http://earthsky.org/science-wire/light-from-the-darkness

Artistic view of a nova explosion depicting the binary stellar system. Image Credit: David A Hardy and STFC.

Here’s the story: http://earthsky.org/science-wire/neon-lights-up-exploding-stars

GK Persei 1901 – view of the ejecta a century after the nova explosion. Image Credit: Adam Block/NOAO/AURA/NSF.

Here’s the story: http://earthsky.org/science-wire/neon-lights-up-exploding-stars

Nearly 200 000 light-years from Earth, the Large Magellanic Cloud, a satellite galaxy of the Milky Way, floats in space, in a long and slow dance around our galaxy. As the Milky Way’s gravity gently tugs on its neighbour’s gas clouds, they collapse to form new stars. In turn, these light up the gas clouds in a kaleidoscope of colours, visible in this image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. Credit: NASA, ESA. Acknowledgement: Josh Lake

Here’s the story: http://earthsky.org/science-wire/a-hidden-treasure-in-the-large-magellanic-cloud

I hope you enjoyed these amazing images that remind us why space is so awesome!

David Callejas