Astronaut Scott Kelly isn't even halfway through his ambitious "Year in Space" mission, but he's wasted no time wowing his millions of Twitter followers with his breathtaking #EarthArt photo series.
Perched above the Earth's surface in the International Space Station, Kelly gets a front row seat to the surreal grandeur of the planet, and luckily for us, he's sharing his unique perspective with everyone on the ground.
Many of his aerial photos resemble abstract paintings or something that you might view under a microscope, and the comparisons underscore the beauty and vibrance of the planet's natural (and unnatural) landscapes.
The purpose of Kelly's yearlong mission (twice as long as the typical U.S. mission) is to better understand how long-term exposure to the harsh environment of space affects the human body. NASA hopes this mission will provide insight into how to reduce risks for future astronauts engaged in missions beyond Earth's lower orbit, such as a journey to Mars.
Since Kelly's not slated to leave the ISS until March 2016, it's safe to say we'll be seeing a lot more gorgeous aerial imagery from him in the months to come. For exact coordinates for each photo (as well as the current position of the ISS), check out this interactive GPS map.
Related on MNN: