2015 is the International Year of Light. On Dec. 20, 2013, the United Nations created the Year of Light to "highlight to the citizens of the world the importance of light and optical technologies in their lives."
And no one is more excited to celebrate than NASA. The space organization has released a spectacular set of photos taken from its $1.5 billion telescope, the Chandra X-ray Observatory. By combining a variety of images such as X-ray, optical, infrared, UV and radio, the telescope is able to piece together amazing images from around the universe in high-energy regions.
"From a distant galaxy to the relatively nearby debris field of an exploded star, these images demonstrate the myriad ways that information about the universe is communicated to us through light," NASA said in a statement.
Let's take a look at what they've released so far:
This is what an exploding star in the Milky Way looks like. The blue bands are multimillion-degree gases seen through X-rays, and the red is the outer edge.
This gorgeous supernova is 16,000 light-years from Earth.
This beauty is a bit farther, at 700 million light-years away, and is the closest radio galaxy to our Earth.
This is what a star looks like after exploding. It's the oldest documented supernova and astronomers may have first seen this 2,000 years ago.
Dubbed the "Whirlpool," it's about 30 million light years away.
If this is the beginning of our Year of Light, we can't wait to see what NASA might be unveiling next.