A Sun Spot, A Moon Tentacle, And Other Amazing Images Of The Week

Plus, the Prince Nebula

A Volcanic Eruption From Space

Astronaut Tim Peake, who is currently living on the International Space Station, captured this image of an erupting volcano earlier this week. You can see a plume of ash and gas coming out of the Klyuchevskaya volcano, which is located on the eastern coast of Russia and is one of the tallest active volcanoes in the world.

Pink Is The New Gold

Apple announced this week the release of its newest Macbooks. While the latest notebook computers feature a slightly faster processor, their claim to fame is that they come in more colors, including rose gold, which as we all know is a fancy way of saying pink. While some may rush to purchase Apple’s first pink notebook, I owned a pink Sony Vaio in 2008, before pink laptops were cool. Just saying.

Floater Home

Swiss submarine-maker Migaloo has come up with a solution to combat the 1 percent’s problem of losing its private islands to rising sea levels. Meet the Kokomo Ailand: a 98,000 square feet mega-yacht with a penthouse, beach club, and even a shark elevator. The penthouse sits at a comfortable 26 stories about sea level. The cost? To be determined.

Enceladus’ Tentacle

To go along with the ocean that flows under its surface and may contain life, Saturn’s sixth largest moon also boosts what looks like a massive tentacle on its surface. NASA’s Cassini Probe captured the above image, showing the tentacle-shaped formation on Enceladus that geologists refer to as “Y-shaped discontinuities.” They are thought to form when materials on the surface pushes northward and in doing to compress or displace ice in their path.

Dusty Doughnuts

When a galaxy is active, its central supermassive black hole is feeding on a circular disc of gas. That structure is called a torus, and for the first time researchers from Spain have been able to see it. According to the New Scientist, this may help researchers understand why a galaxy becomes active. The image above shows what the dusty doughnut might look like.

A Purple Nebula For Prince

Yesterday, after the world learned of singer and artist Prince’s passing, NASA released this image on its Twitter account, saying: “A purple nebula, in honor of Prince.” This image is of the Crab Nebula in our own Milky Way galaxy. You can download the image here.

The Cool Kid Of 3D Printing

Though they’re useful and cool, some 3D printers can be a bit bulky and unappealing. But the new ZMorph 2.0 SX–a 3D printer, laser engraver, CNC milling machine combo–from Polish company ZMorph, is perhaps the most gorgeous 3D printer yet. It’s also versatile; the interchangeable tool heads let the user print in plastic, metal, ceramic, and even “thick pastes.” via The Verge

Sun Freckle

Just like we get freckles from spending too much time in the sun, the sun gets sunspots from spending too much time, well, being the sun. Sort of. Sunspots, like the one pictured above from April 17th, occur when strong magnetic fields break through the sun’s surface. When they do, that area cools down slightly, as seen through a sunspot.

Space Bubble

In honor of NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope’s 26th birthday, astronomers chose to highlight the Bubble Nebula, or NGC 7635, an iconic image depicting a bubble blown in space by a super-hot, massive star. The Bubble Nebula is 7,100 light years away from Earth. Read more about how the bubble formed here.

Turtle Triumph

Last but not least, in honor of Earth Day, here’s some happy news about our lovely and luscious planet: This year, Green Sea Turtles were officially removed from the endangered species list. While they are still listed as threatened, that’s much better than last year, and here’s to hoping these beautiful creatures will be off that list soon, too. Here are 10 other environmental wins.
Claire Maldarelli
Claire Maldarelli

is the Science Editor at Popular Science. She has a particular interest in brain science, the microbiome, and human physiology. In addition to Popular Science, her work has appeared in The New York Times, Scientific American, and Scholastic’s Science World and Super Science magazines, among others. She has a bachelor’s degree in neurobiology from the University of California, Davis and a master’s in science journalism from New York University's Science, Health, and Environmental Reporting Program. Contact the author here.