<p class="c0"><strong>This Hubble Space Telescope shot of the&nbsp;<a class="c17" href="http://www.space.com/16528-horsehead-nebula.html">Horsehead Nebula</a>, released April 19,&nbsp;was taken in celebration of the telescope's 23rd anniversary. Pictured in infrared wavelengths for the first time, the Horsehead is part of the larger constellation Orion.</strong></p><p class="c0">The nebula is relatively close—just 1,500 light-years from Earth—which makes it a favorite for space photography focused on the formation of new stars. NASA scientists anticipate that despite Hubble's crystal-clear view, the new&nbsp;<a class="c17" href="http://www.jwst.nasa.gov/">James Webb Space Telescope</a> that will launch in 2018 will provide even more detailed views. (<a class="c17" href="http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2013/01/125-space-exploration/folger-text">Read about travel to the stars in </a><a class="c17" href="http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2013/01/125-space-exploration/folger-text"><em>National Geographic</em></a><a class="c17" href="http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2013/01/125-space-exploration/folger-text"> magazine.</a>)</p><p class="c0">—<em>Dan Stone</em></p>

Horsehead Nebula Portrait

This Hubble Space Telescope shot of the Horsehead Nebula, released April 19, was taken in celebration of the telescope's 23rd anniversary. Pictured in infrared wavelengths for the first time, the Horsehead is part of the larger constellation Orion.

The nebula is relatively close—just 1,500 light-years from Earth—which makes it a favorite for space photography focused on the formation of new stars. NASA scientists anticipate that despite Hubble's crystal-clear view, the new James Webb Space Telescope that will launch in 2018 will provide even more detailed views. (Read about travel to the stars in National Geographic magazine.)

Dan Stone

Image courtesy STScI/AURA/ESA/NASA

Space Pictures This Week: Nebulae, Rockets, and a New Earth

The Horsehead glows and Earth gets another twin in this week's best space pictures.

Read This Next

What drives elephant poaching? It’s not greed
How old are you, really? The answer is written on your face.
The rise of vegan safaris

Go Further

Subscriber Exclusive Content

Why are people so dang obsessed with Mars?

How viruses shape our world

The era of greyhound racing in the U.S. is coming to an end

See how people have imagined life on Mars through history

See how NASA’s new Mars rover will explore the red planet

Why are people so dang obsessed with Mars?

How viruses shape our world

The era of greyhound racing in the U.S. is coming to an end

See how people have imagined life on Mars through history

See how NASA’s new Mars rover will explore the red planet

Why are people so dang obsessed with Mars?

How viruses shape our world

The era of greyhound racing in the U.S. is coming to an end

See how people have imagined life on Mars through history

See how NASA’s new Mars rover will explore the red planet