Get Creative with Data from Past Challenges

The data from past seasons of the Astrophoto Challenges is always available — pull up NASA data files of different galaxies and nebulae in JS9-4L and see what you can create!

How to access image data from past seasons

All of the image files from past seasons are made available in the Challenges Archive of JS9-4L, so that you can create your own astrophotography long after the Challenges have ended. You'll find the image files in the Challenge Images dropdown (see image below).

processing in JS9
Find all NASA image files from past seasons in the Challenges Archive of JS9-4L

An overview of the two Challenges

Watch the video below to learn how to the Challenges work. If you want to play with past NASA data in JS9-4L, details of the NASA Data Challenge will probably be most useful to you.

Experts discuss targets from past Challenges

What can astrophotography tell you about the dust lanes in distant nebulae or the stellar winds shooting from starburst galaxies? Watch videos of experts discussing the most exciting features of targets from past Astrophoto Challenges, and what you can learn about these targets through different wavelengths. All of the NASA image files that the experts discuss are available for you to work with in the Challenges Archive of JS9-4L.

M82 Starburst Galaxywinter 2019-2020

M82 is nicknamed the Cigar Galaxy. Its distorted shape is due to its proximity to its glamorous twin, M81. The gravity of M81 has twisted and distorted M82, turning it into a "starburst galaxy." Inside vast choking dust clouds, thousands of giant hot stars are being made, and the winds generated by the white-hot stars are blowing fountains of gas out of the galaxy. As new stars are born, other giant stars are dying in supernova explosions, making the Cigar Galaxy a spectacular cosmic firecracker! What do you see more of in your OWN imageā€”hot, glowing gas, or dark, shadowy dust clouds?

Optical Light
Hubble Space Telescope
Professor of Physics, Catholic University of America
X-ray Light
Chandra X-ray Observatory
Astrophysicist, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory
Ultraviolet Light
Galaxy Evolution Explorer (GALEX)
Astrophysicist, Carnegie Observatories
Infrared Light
Spitzer Space Telescope
Professor of Physics, Occidental College
Find these Messier 82 Galaxy images and more at Astropix

Whirlpool Galaxysummer 2019

A beautiful face-on spiral galaxy, the Whirlpool's spiral pattern was first seen and sketched in 1845. At first, it was unclear whether astronomers were looking at a whole city of stars a long way off, or simply one nearby star and its newly formed planetary system. Can you see the small companion galaxy that is interacting with the larger spiral?

Optical Light
Hubble Space Telescope
Professor of Astronomy, University of Toledo
X-ray Light
Chandra X-ray Observatory
Professor of Physics, McGill Space Institute
Ultraviolet Light
Galaxy Evolution Explorer (GALEX)
Astrophysicist, IPAC/Caltech
Infrared Light
Spitzer Space Telescope
Professor of Astronomy, University of Toledo
Find these Whirlpool Galaxy images and more at Astropix

When does this season end?

The season will end on .

After the season ends, we will review all submissions to NASA's Astrophoto Challenges, and will post standout entries on the Challenge pages.

Follow our Twitter or Facebook pages to get updates whenever standout entries are posted.

What about past seasons?

You can still work with NASA data from past Challenges! Head to the Challenges Archive of JS9-4L, where you will find NASA image files among the Archived Images for all of the past seasons.

Want to see what others have done with image data? Check out standout entries from past Challenges on the MicroObservatory Challenge and NASA Data Challenge pages.