On July 17th, NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) satellite completed its first survey of the entire sky viewable from Earth. After just seven months in orbit, WISE -- a precursor to the planned James Webb Space Telescope -- has returned more than a million images that provide a close look at celestial objects ranging from distant galaxies to asteroids. The first release of WISE data, covering about 80 percent of the sky, will be delivered to the astronomical community in May of next year, but in the meantime we can see some of the images and animations that NASA has released to date: Galleries (containing just a small selection of images): 1, 2, 3, 4. Videos and Animations: 1, 2 [more inside]
Hi-res pictures of the Super-Kamiokande, a neutrino detector in Japan. The Super-Kamiokande, also known as the Super-K, is used to detect neutrinos, electrically neutral particles that are able to pass through matter. Effectively, it's a giant pool with walls made of phototubes used to detect Cherenkov radiation emitted by the interaction between neutrinos and electrons in the water. But even if you didn't understand any of that, it's still shiny and neat to look at.