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20 Top Space Photos of the Year 2017

World | Reuters | December 26, 2017, 1:41 pm
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 A composite image of the Crab Nebula, a supernova remnant, assembled by combining data from five telescopes spanning nearly the entire breadth of the electromagnetic spectrum: the Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array, the Spitzer Space Telescope, the Hubble Space Telescope, the XMM-Newton Observatory, and the Chandra X-ray Observatory. (Image: NASA / Reuters)

A composite image of the Crab Nebula, a supernova remnant, assembled by combining data from five telescopes spanning nearly the entire breadth of the electromagnetic spectrum: the Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array, the Spitzer Space Telescope, the Hubble Space Telescope, the XMM-Newton Observatory, and the Chandra X-ray Observatory. (Image: NASA / Reuters)

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 A medium-sized (M2) solar flare and a coronal mass ejection (CME) erupting from a large active region of the Sun in July. The flare lasted almost two hours. (Image: NASA / Reuters)

A medium-sized (M2) solar flare and a coronal mass ejection (CME) erupting from a large active region of the Sun in July. The flare lasted almost two hours. (Image: NASA / Reuters)

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 A photo by a member of the Expedition 52 crew aboard the International Space Station shows one of the 16 sunrises they experience every day, as the orbiting laboratory travels around Earth. (Image: Reuters)

A photo by a member of the Expedition 52 crew aboard the International Space Station shows one of the 16 sunrises they experience every day, as the orbiting laboratory travels around Earth. (Image: Reuters)

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 An image taken by the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows spring in the Northern hemisphere, with snow made of carbon dioxide, or dry ice, covering dunes. (Image: NASA / Reuters)

An image taken by the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows spring in the Northern hemisphere, with snow made of carbon dioxide, or dry ice, covering dunes. (Image: NASA / Reuters)

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 The Calabash Nebula shows the death of a low-mass star like the Sun. This image taken by the Hubble Space Telescope shows the star going through a transformation from a red giant to a planetary nebula, during which it blows its outer layers of gas and dust out into the surrounding space. (Image: NASA / Reuters)

The Calabash Nebula shows the death of a low-mass star like the Sun. This image taken by the Hubble Space Telescope shows the star going through a transformation from a red giant to a planetary nebula, during which it blows its outer layers of gas and dust out into the surrounding space. (Image: NASA / Reuters)

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 A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off on a supply mission to the International Space Station from launch pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida. (Image: Reuters)

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off on a supply mission to the International Space Station from launch pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida. (Image: Reuters)

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 A composite image of the colliding galaxy clusters called Abell 3411 and Abell 3412. (Image: Reuters)

A composite image of the colliding galaxy clusters called Abell 3411 and Abell 3412. (Image: Reuters)

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 The spacecraft Cassini is pictured above Saturn's northern hemisphere prior to making one of its Grand Finale dives in a NASA illustration. (Image: NASA / Reuters)

The spacecraft Cassini is pictured above Saturn's northern hemisphere prior to making one of its Grand Finale dives in a NASA illustration. (Image: NASA / Reuters)

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 A young super star cluster known as Westerlund 1, a relatively young cluster at around three million years old compared to the Sun, which is some 4.6 billion years old. (Image: NASA / Reuters)

A young super star cluster known as Westerlund 1, a relatively young cluster at around three million years old compared to the Sun, which is some 4.6 billion years old. (Image: NASA / Reuters)

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 A composite image showing the full western hemisphere at night. (Image: Reuters)

A composite image showing the full western hemisphere at night. (Image: Reuters)

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 A dwarf galaxy named NGC 5949 as captured by the Hubble Space Telescope. (Image: NASA / Reuters)

A dwarf galaxy named NGC 5949 as captured by the Hubble Space Telescope. (Image: NASA / Reuters)

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12/ 20
 The Soyuz MS-05 spacecraft carrying the crew of Paolo Nespoli of Italy, Sergey Ryazanskiy of Russia and Randy Bresnik of the U.S. blasts off to the International Space Station from the launchpad at the Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan. (Image: Reuters)

The Soyuz MS-05 spacecraft carrying the crew of Paolo Nespoli of Italy, Sergey Ryazanskiy of Russia and Randy Bresnik of the U.S. blasts off to the International Space Station from the launchpad at the Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan. (Image: Reuters)

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13/ 20
 An illustration shows the hot, dense, expanding cloud of debris stripped from two neutron stars just before they collided. The image was released to mark the first time scientists detected light tied to a gravitational-wave event from two merging neutron stars in the galaxy NGC 4993, located about 130 million light-years from Earth in the constellation Hydra. (Image: Reuters)

An illustration shows the hot, dense, expanding cloud of debris stripped from two neutron stars just before they collided. The image was released to mark the first time scientists detected light tied to a gravitational-wave event from two merging neutron stars in the galaxy NGC 4993, located about 130 million light-years from Earth in the constellation Hydra. (Image: Reuters)

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 Orbital ATK's Cygnus spacecraft approaches the International Space Station in a photo taken by Expedition 51 Flight Engineer Thomas Pesquet of the European Space Agency. (Image: Reuters)

Orbital ATK's Cygnus spacecraft approaches the International Space Station in a photo taken by Expedition 51 Flight Engineer Thomas Pesquet of the European Space Agency. (Image: Reuters)

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 A view of Saturn's moon Dione, looking toward the Saturn-facing side. When viewed from a distance with the sun directly behind Cassini, the larger, brighter craters stand out. (Image: Reuters)

A view of Saturn's moon Dione, looking toward the Saturn-facing side. When viewed from a distance with the sun directly behind Cassini, the larger, brighter craters stand out. (Image: Reuters)

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 An image taken by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows a mound that appears to have blocked the path of dunes as they move south (north is to the left in this image). Smaller dunes run perpendicular to some of the larger-scale dunes, probably indicating a shift in wind directions. (Image: Reuters)

An image taken by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows a mound that appears to have blocked the path of dunes as they move south (north is to the left in this image). Smaller dunes run perpendicular to some of the larger-scale dunes, probably indicating a shift in wind directions. (Image: Reuters)

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17/ 20
 A composite image of 21 separate photographs taken with a single fixed camera shows the solar eclipse as it creates the effect of a diamond ring at totality as seen from Clingmans Dome, the highest point in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Tennessee. (Image: Reuters)

A composite image of 21 separate photographs taken with a single fixed camera shows the solar eclipse as it creates the effect of a diamond ring at totality as seen from Clingmans Dome, the highest point in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Tennessee. (Image: Reuters)

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 An image from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows a late summer view in the Southern hemisphere of Mars. The Sun is low in the sky and subtle topography is accentuated in orbital images. (Image: Reuters)

An image from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows a late summer view in the Southern hemisphere of Mars. The Sun is low in the sky and subtle topography is accentuated in orbital images. (Image: Reuters)

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 An image from the JunoCam imager on NASA's Juno spacecraft shows Jupiter's Great Red Spot fading from view while the dynamic bands of the southern region of Jupiter come into focus. (Image: Reuters)

An image from the JunoCam imager on NASA's Juno spacecraft shows Jupiter's Great Red Spot fading from view while the dynamic bands of the southern region of Jupiter come into focus. (Image: Reuters)

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 An artist's concept shows a black hole with an accretion disk - a flat structure of material orbiting the black hole - and a jet of hot gas, called plasma. (Image: Reuters)

An artist's concept shows a black hole with an accretion disk - a flat structure of material orbiting the black hole - and a jet of hot gas, called plasma. (Image: Reuters)