Multi-sun-bathing. The drawing is by Elliot Alfredius, from the Gliese CHZ book published by Peow Studio in Sweden. The book is sadly out of print but some of the other images from it can still be found on the publisher's Tumblr.

Multi-sun-bathing. Click to enlarge. This drawing is by Elliot Alfredius, from the Gliese CHZ book published by Peow Studio in Sweden (a few more images from the book are here), and republished here with permission. The book is sadly already out of print.

Nearly 2,000 exoplanets have been discovered at last check1An up-to-date count is kept at Exoplanet.eu and while the kinks in getting to them haven’t been worked out, we can drool over recently issued travel posters. The three below were produced by NASA, the American fantasy art studio that also dabbles in space travel, and the one above is from the Swedish publisher Peow.

Kepler 16b is a two-sunned planet. Click to enlarge, or download at print resolution here.

Kepler 16b is a two-sunned planet. Click to enlarge, or download at print resolution here.

Kepler-186f is the first Earth-size planet discovered in the potentially 'habitable zone' around another star, where liquid water could exist on the planet's surface. Its star is much cooler and redder than our Sun. If plant life does exist on a planet like Kepler-186f, its photosynthesis could have been influenced by the star's red-wavelength photons, making for a color palette that's very different than the greens on Earth. This discovery was made by Kepler, NASA's planet hunting telescope.

Kepler-186f is an Earth-sized planet and could potentially have water, but it’s a redder star, so NASA is guessing that if it has plant life, the otherworldly photosynthesis would cause that to be red too. Click to enlarge or download at print resolution here.

The artist's interpretation of HD 40307G is a bit of a failure. Look like a fun place for gliding, trampolining or skydiving? You'd actually spend a lot of time lying down or crawling, as the planet has eight times earth's mass and this a much stronger gravitational pull.

The artist’s interpretation of HD 40307G is a actually bit of a failure. Look like a fun place for gliding, trampolining or skydiving? You’d actually spend a lot of time lying down or crawling, as the planet has eight times earth’s mass and thus a much stronger gravitational pull. Click to enlarge or download at print resolution here.

NASA has also just released the largest photo ever taken — at 1.5 billion pixels — which shows a good chunk of our neighbor, the Andromeda galaxy. You would need 600 HD screens taped together to display the full thing, but fortunately NASA has also provided a page where you can pan and zoom around it. You can zoom all the way in, but even with this high resolution you still won’t see any space aliens or even their planets. Just stars, stars, stars. Thus, the need for the illustrations above.

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1. An up-to-date count is kept at Exoplanet.eu