The Search for Life

Data from the retired Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA), a joint venture between NASA and the German Space Agency, led scientists to their discovery.

SMART NEWS

Scientists Detect Water on the Surface of Asteroids for the First Time Ever

Saturn's moon Mimas has a giant impact crater, named Hershel, that stretches across a third of its surface and makes it resemble the "Death Star" from Star Wars.

SMART NEWS

An Icy Moon of Saturn May Be Hiding a Vast Ocean Under Its Crust, Surprising Astronomers

Saturn's moon Enceladus, represented in a composite of several images taken by NASA's Voyager 2 probe

SMART NEWS

Life-Sparking Gas Strengthens Evidence That Enceladus, a Moon of Saturn, Could Be Habitable

The capsule holding the asteroid sample shortly after touching down in the desert on September 24 at the Department of Defense's Utah Test and Training Range.

SMART NEWS

A Sample of Ancient Asteroid Dust Has Landed Safely on Earth

An artist's concept of a simulated view from the rough, icy surface of the moon Europa with Jupiter looming over the horizon.

SMART NEWS

Jupiter's Moon Europa May Contain Carbon, a Crucial Ingredient for Life

Past, Present, Future

Astrolabes were astronomical calculating devices that did everything from tell the time to map the stars. This 16th century planispherical astrolabe stems from Morocco.

INNOVATION

The Story of the Astrolabe, the Original Smartphone

Besides exceptional facial hair, what could these two gentlemen have in common?

SCIENCE

The Hidden Connections Between Darwin and the Physicist Who Championed Entropy

An illustration shows the record-breaking supernova ASASSN-15lh as it would appear from an exoplanet about 10,000 light-years away.

SCIENCE

Astronomers Have Found the Brightest Supernova Yet

SCIENCE

Watch the Universe Evolve Over 13 Billion Years

The Andromeda Galaxy

SCIENCE

What Does the Future of the Universe Hold?

How We Explore

People in New Delhi celebrate India's successful landing of a spacecraft near the moon's south pole on Wednesday.

SMART NEWS

India Lands a Spacecraft Near the Moon's South Pole, a First in Lunar Exploration

The James Webb Space Telescope's first Deep Field image

SCIENCE

NASA Releases First Breathtaking Images Taken by James Webb Space Telescope

CAMS results for November 28 to December 14 from 2010 to 2016. Each point is direction from which a meteor was measured to approach, with red showing faster meteors and blue slower ones.

SCIENCE

Introducing the Global Effort to Map the Night Sky

Telescope array

SCIENCE

The Hunt for High-Energy Photons Takes Place From a Mountaintop in Mexico

Astrophysicist Kip Thorne dared to dream of a machine to find gravitational waves.

SCIENCE

The Detection of Gravitational Waves Was a Scientific Breakthrough, but What’s Next?

Galaxies, Quasars, Clusters

An artist's rendering of the quasar that set the record for the universe's brightest object, with its black hole at its center.

SMART NEWS

Astronomers Discover the Brightest Known Object in the Universe, Shining 500 Trillion Times as Bright as the Sun

Spiral galaxy NGC 628, located 32 million light-years away in the constellation Pisces, as captured by the James Webb Space Telescope in near- and mid-infrared light. The red and orange spirals represent gas, while the small blue dots represent stars.

SMART NEWS

See Dazzling New Images of 19 Spiral Galaxies Captured by the James Webb Space Telescope

Data from the Hubble Space Telescope produced this new image of the galaxy UGC 8091.

SMART NEWS

See the 'Sparkling Snow Globe' Galaxy Captured by the Hubble Space Telescope

Understanding the Cosmos

A picture taken by the Hubble Space Telescope that contains GN-z11, the galaxy with the newly discovered black hole at its center. When GN-z11 was first imaged, it was the farthest galaxy ever seen in the universe.

SMART NEWS

Astronomers Discover the Oldest Known Black Hole, Breaking a Record Set Last Year

An infrared image of 47 Tucanae, a dense globular cluster of stars located roughly 16,000 light years from Earth. A new study has predicted that a black hole lies at its center.

SCIENCE

How Astrophysicists Found a Black Hole Where No One Else Could

LIGO's founding fathers, from left: Rainer Weiss, Kip Thorne and Barry Barish. Not pictured: Ronald Drever

INNOVATION

Meet the Team of Scientists Who Discovered Gravitational Waves