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Space

Month in Space Pictures: June 2018

An asteroid gets its close-up, watching the World Cup in zero gravity and more out-of-this-world pictures from June 2018.

 / Updated 19 PHOTOS
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Tight fit

From left, NASA astronaut Serena Aunon-Chancellor, Russian cosmonaut Sergey Prokopyev and German astronaut Alexander Gerst are packed into the Soyuz capsule the days of preparation ahead of their June 6 launch to the International Space Station. 

"Cozy? Absolutely...but it feels like home," tweeted Aunon-Chancellor.

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Dark and stormy Jupiter

The intensity of Jupiter's swirling clouds is captured in this image from the Juno spacecraft as it performed its 13th close flyby on May 23. At the time, the spacecraft was about 4,900 miles from the tops of the clouds of the gas giant.

Image released on June 15.

NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS/Kevin M. Gill
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Space junk beware

A debris-removing satellite is deployed for testing on June 20 from the space station. 

About the size of a washing machine, the satellite carries three technologies for space-debris capture and de-orbiting — a harpoon, a net and a drag sail.

Ricky Arnold / NASA
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Lightning below

Lightning flashes in the southern Indian Ocean as seen from the space station on June 27.

German astronaut Alexander Gerst posted the image on Twitter, writing "Some of the lightning flashes we see from up here... are so incredibly bright that I can still see the flash with my eyes closed--more than 1000 km away, in space."

Alexander Gerst / ESA
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Hanging out

NASA astronaut Drew Feustel is tethered to the space station just outside the Quest airlock during a spacewalk he conducted with fellow NASA astronaut Ricky Arnold (out of frame) on June 14.

During the six-hour-and-49-minute spacewalk, the duo installed high-definition cameras to provide enhanced views of commercial crew spacecraft, including the SpaceX Crew Dragon and the Boeing Starliner, as they approach and dock with the orbital laboratory.

NASA
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Image: A helicopter is seen passing in front of the moon, typically called a 'Strawberry Moon' when full in June, above London, Britain

Strawberry moon

A helicopter passes in front of the moon above London on June 27. 

June's full moon is called the "Strawberry Moon" because Algonquin tribes started harvesting the fruit at that time of year. 

Toby Melville / Reuters
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Image: KAZAKHSTAN-RUSSIA-US-GERMANY-SPACE-ISS

Farewell through glass

German astronaut Alexander Gerst forms a heart with his hands as he bids farewell from inside a bus before a launch at the Baikonur cosmodrome on June 6. 

Vyacheslav Oseledko / AFP - Getty Images
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Image: KAZAKHSTAN-RUSSIA-US-GERMANY-SPACE-ISS

Ready to go

NASA astronaut Serena Aunon-Chancellor flashes a thumbs-up from inside the bus before the launch on June 6. 

Vyacheslav Oseledko / AFP - Getty Images
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Image: Soyuz MS-09 spacecraft launch

Liftoff!

A bird flies in the foreground as the Soyuz rocket, carrying crew members Sergey Prokopyev of Roscosmos, Serena Aunon-Chancellor of NASA and Alexander Gerst of the European Space Agency, lifts off from the launch pad in Kazakhstan on June 6.

The trio will continue work on hundreds of experiments in biology, biotechnology, physical science and Earth science aboard the space station.

SERGEI ILNITSKY / EPA
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Cloud shadows

Clouds dot the sky over the Rub' al Khali, or the Empty Quarter, a massive and mysterious wilderness of towering dunes and ancient dry lake beds, in the southern Arabian peninsula as seen from the space station on June 25.

Ricky Arnold / NASA
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Earth art

The striking greens and blues of the shallower depths of Turks and Caicos are captured in this image from the space station on June 12.

The vivid hues are created by light reflecting off the fine white sand particles, primarily composed of broken-down shells and coral. 

Drew Feustel / NASA
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Image: Summer Solstice Is Celebrated At Avebury's Neolithic Henge

Summer solstice

Spectators gather on the ridge overlooking the Avebury Neolithic henge monument as they wait to see the sun rise on June 21 in Wiltshire, England.

Constructed in the Third Millennium B.C., the Neolithic monument, one of the best-known prehistoric sites in Britain, contains the largest megalithic stone circle in the world. Hundreds of druids, pagans and revelers gathered at the ancient monument to watch the sunset and the sunrise, marking the northern hemisphere's summer solstice. 

Matt Cardy / Getty Images
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Zero-gravity soccer

German astronaut Alexander Gerst watches his country, the reigning World Cup champions, compete from the space station on June 17.

Germany was defeated later in June by South Korea, crashing out of the group stage for the first time in their history.

 

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Threads of blue

A ripple of bright blue threads through a galaxy in this image from the Hubble Space Telescope released on June 8. The foreground of this image is littered with nearby stars with their gleaming diffraction spikes. A keen eye can also spot a few other galaxies that, while masquerading as stars at first glance, reveal their true nature on closer inspection.

The central galaxy streaked with color, IC 4870, was discovered by DeLisle Stewart in 1900 and is located approximately 28 million light-years away. 

ESA/Hubble and NASA
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Image: KAZAKHSTAN-SPACE-ISS-RUSSIA-JAPAN-LANDING

Landing zone

NASA and Russian emergency teams gather at the Soyuz space capsule after its landing on the steppes of Kazakhstan on June 3. Russian cosmonaut Anton Shkaplerov, NASA astronaut Scott Tingle and Japanese astronaut Norishige Kanai returned in the capsule from a mission to the space station. 

DMITRY LOVETSKY / AFP - Getty Images
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Image: Expedition 55 Soyuz MS-07 Landing

Hero's welcome

NASA astronaut Scott Tingle is carried to a medical tent by NASA astronaut Kjell Lindgren, left, and NASA Public Affairs Officer Gary Jordan shortly after landing on June 3.

Bill Ingalls/NASA / Getty Images
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Image: Expedition 55 Soyuz MS-07 Landing

The journey home

A Russian all-terrain vehicle drives astronaut Scott Tingle from the medical tent to a waiting helicopter on June 3 after he and fellow crew members returned from 168 days in space. 

Bill Ingalls / NASA
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Image: CORRECTION-JAPAN-SPACE-ASTEROID-SCIENCE

Asteroid up close

The Japanese Hayabusa 2 probe captured this image of the Ryugu asteroid from an observation position some 12 miles above the asteroid on June 26. 

Launched by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, JAXA, in 2014, the probe will poke, prod and even impact the asteroid, deploying a small lander and three rovers. 

JAXA via AFP - Getty Images
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A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launches just before dawn on June 29, 2018 at Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station carrying supplies to the space station.

Colorful launch

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launches just before dawn on June 29, 2018 at Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station carrying supplies to the space station.

Month in Space Pictures: May 2018

SpaceX
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