NASA unveiled a new searchable media library on Tuesday, in a victory for space desktop wallpaper enthusiasts and history buffs alike. The archive, which brings together 140,000 photos, videos, and audio files from 60 collections, documents NASA's missions and personnel from the agency's founding, in 1958, until today. View some of the highlights of the archive––from early moon landings to contemporary, high-resolution photos of far off nebulae––here.
APOLLO 16 ONBOARD PHOTO: AASTRONAUT SALUTING FLAG ON LUNAR SURFACE. LUNAR MODULE AND LUNAR ROVER IN BACKGROUND.
This July 19, 2013 photo shows the lights of Earth during a night pass by an Expedition 36 crew member on board the International Space Station (ISS).
NASA astronaut Sunita Williams, Expedition 32 flight engineer, appears to touch the bright sun during the mission's third session of extravehicular activity (EVA) on Sept. 5, 2012 on the International Space Station. During the six-hour, 28-minute spacewalk, Williams and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency astronaut Aki Hoshide (visible in the reflections of Williams's helmet visor), flight engineer, completed the installation of a device on the exterior of the ISS.
During its flight, NASA’s Galileo spacecraft returned images of the Earth and Moon. Separate images of the Earth and Moon, from Jun. 6, 1998, were combined to generate this view.
This picture of Neptune was produced from the last whole planet images taken through the green and orange filters on NASA's Voyager 2 narrow angle camera, on Oct. 30, 1998. The images were taken at a range of 4.4 million miles from the planet, 4 days and 20 hours before closest approach. The picture shows the Great Dark Spot and its companion bright smudge; on the west limb the fast moving bright feature called Scooter and the little dark spot are visible. These clouds were seen to persist for as long as Voyager's cameras could resolve them. North of these, a bright cloud band similar to the south polar streak may be seen.
The silhouette of the space shuttle Endeavour appears over Earth's horizon on February 9, 2010. The orbital outpost was at 46.9 south latitude and 80.5 west longitude, over the South Pacific Ocean off the coast of southern Chile. The orange layer is the troposphere, where all of the weather and clouds which we typically watch and experience are generated and contained. This orange layer gives way to the whitish stratosphere and then into the mesosphere. In some frames the black color is part of a window frame rather than the blackness of space.
ESA/Herschel/PACS/MESS Key Progr
This image shows a composite view of the Crab nebula, an iconic supernova remnant in our Milky Way galaxy, as viewed by the Herschel Space Observatory and the Hubble Space Telescope on Dec. 12, 2013.
Astronaut John H. Glenn Jr., the first American to orbit the earth, runs along the beach at Cape Canaveral, Florida in 1962. Glenn participated in a strict physical training program during his training for the Mercury-Atlas 6 mission, which NASA conducted on February 20, 1962.
A close-up view of an astronaut's bootprint in the lunar soil, photographed with a 70mm lunar surface camera during the Apollo 11 extravehicular activity on the moon on July 20, 1969. During the Apollo 11 flight, Neil A. Armstrong and Edwin E. Aldrin Jr., became the first two humans to land on the moon.
An Apollo 16 astronaut salutes the U.S. flag on the lunar surface on Jan. 16, 1972. The Lunar Module (LM) and Lunar Roving Vehicle (LRV) can be seen behind him. Apollo 16 launched from the Kennedy Space Center on April 16, 1972 for a 3-day stay on Earth's Moon. The fifth lunar landing mission out of six, Apollo 16 was famous for deploying and using an ultraviolet telescope as the first lunar observatory. The telescope photographed ultraviolet light emitted by Earth and other celestial objects. The LRV, developed by the Marshall Space Flight Center, was also used for collecting rocks and data on the mysterious lunar highlands. The mission ended April 27, 1972 as the crew splashed down into the Pacific Ocean.
President Jimmy Carter, hand on waist, is briefed on preparations for the first space shuttle launch by center director Lee Scherer on Oct. 1, 1978 at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida. To the left of Carter is NASA Administrator Robert Frosch.
Vice President George Bush talks to the Earth-orbiting astronauts from the spacecraft communicators in the operations control room of the Johnson Space Center's mission control center on Apr. 8, 1983. Astronaut Roy D. Bridges, center, watches the president's phone call. JSC Director Gerald D. Griffin, left, watches a large monitor (out of frame) on which the TV scene of the maiden voyage of the Challenger space shuttle is visible.
The space shuttle Challenger lifts off from the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida on Jan. 28, 1986 at 11:38 a.m. with a crew of seven astronauts. An accident 73 seconds after liftoff claimed the lives of the crew, including Christa McAuliffe, a New Hampshire teacher who joined the mission to broadcast lessons about space to U.S. schoolchildren. Extensive media coverage and a presidential inquiry followed the Challenger disaster; NASA's space shuttle program remained grounded until 1988.
From the roof of the Launch Control Center, U.S. President Bill Clinton and First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton track the plume and successful launch of Space Shuttle Discovery on Oct. 29, 1998. They attended the launch to witness the return to space of American legend John H. Glenn Jr., payload specialist on the mission
This photo feature the Aurora Australis, seen from a point over the southeast Tasman Sea near southern New Zealand on Sept. 17, 2011. This is one of a series of night time images photographed by one of the Expedition 29 crew members from the International Space Station. The station was located at 46.65 degrees south latitude and 169.10 degrees east longitude.
The rim of Gale Crater is visible in the distance, through the dusty haze, in this view of NASA's Curiosity rover of a sloping hillside on Mount Sharp within the "Murray Buttes" region of Mars, on Sept. 8, 2016. This photo was taken during the 1454th Martian day, or sol, of Curiosity's work on Mars; NASA dispatched the rover in 2012.