Don Dixon's Astronomical Art Portfolio

Exoplanets and Star Travel
September 13 2016

  • 008-Antares-Five
    Hypothetical planet orbiting the red giant star. A white dwarf companion fills shadows with violet light. Oil on masonite, 1973.
  • 077-Interstellar-Probe
    a giant starship is assembled high above the moon ; acylic and gouache on illustration board, 1976
  • 081-Binary-Sun
    In this pre Star Wars painting, two suns blaze in the sky of a desert world. Tidal forces distort their shapes ; gouache on illustration board, 1976
  • 083-Colliding-Galaxies
    spiral galaxies herald the dawn on an imaginary planet ; acrylic and gouache on illustration board, 1985
  • 171-Barnards-Star
    Barnard's Star - 6 light years away, might serve as a dim orange sun for a family of planets
  • 174-Marching-Forest
    Marching Forest - on the imaginary planet Thraxisp, a forest grows in waves toward the source of its energy, the gas giant primary on the horizon.
  • 175-Ice-World-1
    Ice World 1 - a frozen planet of a red dwarf star glistens in its deceptively warm glow
  • 177-Thraxisp
    Thraxisp - a hypothetical habitable satellite of an extrasolar gas giant, developed with Larry Niven, William Hartmann, Joel Hagen, Rick Sternbach, Paul Preuss,…
  • 178-Sentinels-Of-Antares
    Sentinels Of Antares - pillars of salt encrust the bed of an ocean that boiled away when the planet's sun became a red giant
  • 179-Red-Dwarf-Rising
    Red Dwarf Rising - a red dwarf star rises behind alien towers, detail of cover of Paul J. McAuley novel 400 Billion Stars
  • 203-Daedalus-Staging
  • 368-u-Andromedae
    Extrasolar planets of Upsilon Andromeda - comparison of orbits with our own solar system ; painting by Don Dixon for Scientific American
  • 444-hot-jupiter
    Many of the extrasolar planets that have been discovered are several times bigger than jupiter and orbit so near their parent stars that solar wind would blow…
  • 459-super-jovian-forming
    A giant planet is distorted by its rapid spin during the final stages of accretion. Tidal interactions with other planets and its parent star, as well as…
  • 466-extrasolar-planet-Gliese581c-far-view
    Early candidate for a habitable extrasolar planet shown in orbit around its parent red dwarf star.
  • 467-extrasolar-planet-Gliese581c-subsolar
    If the planet is tidally locked, with the same face turned permanently toward its sun, any ocean near the subsolar point would likely simmer under a perpetual…
  • 468-extrasolar-planet-Gliese581c-surface
    The extrasolar planet Gliese 581c is slightly larger than earth and orbits in the habitable zone of its star. The "Twilight Zone" near the boundary between day…
  • 479-Red-Dwarf-Seen-From-Desert-Super-Earth
    479_Red_Dwarf_Seen_From_Desert_Super_Earth A red dwarf star hovers eternally on the horizon of a nearby-orbiting earthlike world. The planet, tidally locked…
  • 480-Orbital-View-Of-Super-Earth
    480_SuperEarth_from_Orbit A red dwarf emerges from eclipse behind a planet twice Earth's mass orbiting in the red dwarf's narrows habitable zone. An interior…
  • Deadalus Starship in flight
    A crewed starship based on the British Interplanetary Society's 1970's Daedalus design fires its nuclear pulse engine in interstellar space. The engine, capable…
  • 490-starship-arrives-alpha-centauri-2
    A habitat two miles across arrives to orbit a hypothetical earthlike planet orbiting the star Alpha Centauri after a 50-year voyage. The discarded braking stage…
  • starship plan
    A starship 10 miles long, capable of reaching the nearest star, Alpha Centauri, is depicted in this illustration created for the July, 2012 issue of Astronomy…
  • 055-Zeta-Aurigae
    Zeta Aurigae - red supergiant star over a desolate planet. A blue companion star casts a second shadow ; gouache on illustration board ; Don Dixon, 1975
  • 021-Antares-Rising
    As the red giant star Antares swells to engulf its inner planets, once frozen outer worlds thaw, perhaps to serve as temporary havens for life. Oil on Masonite…
  • 057-Mira
    Mira is a giant variable star that swells and shrinks like a fiery heart, taking 332 days per "beat" ; gouache on illustration board, 1976
  • 501-starshade-exoplanet-telescope
    A space telescope observes planets orbiting a distant star whose glare has been blocked by a flower-shaped screen the size of a football field. In reality, the…
  • 502-high-definition-space-telescope-starshade
    The High Definition Space Telescope is almost twice the size of a tennis court. By using a football-field-sized shade to block the light from distant stars, the…