BBC Future

The best science and technology pictures of the week

  • Insane bolts
    Lightning erupts from storm clouds over Gillette, Wyoming. Weather forecasters have predicted more heavy rain and thunderstorms. (Daniel Brenner, Gillette News Record/AP)
  • Water bomber
    A fireman watches a specialised helicopter dump water over a blaze near the Greek capital Athens. (Reuters)
  • Helping hand
    An aquarium worker helps free a juvenile humpback whale stranded on a beach in Queensland, Australia. The whale eventually returned to deep water. (Reuters)
  • Brace for impact
    Hurricane Arthur spirals over the North Atlantic Ocean in this shot from the International Space Station tweeted by European Space Agency astronaut Alexander Gerst. (Nasa/Reuters)
  • Launch crawl
    Orbital Sciences Corporation’s rocket Antares, carrying the Cygnus supply vessel, rolls towards its launchpad at Nasa’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. (Nasa/Getty Images)
  • Heavy flier
    The prehistoric gull Pelagornis sandersi, which lived some 25 million years ago, was confirmed as the world’s biggest bird, with a wingspan of 21ft (6.36m). (Bruce Museum/Reuters)
  • Sunken Stars and Stripes
    Divers unfurl a huge flag on the US Navy ship General Hoyt S Vandenberg, sunk to form an artificial reef on the Florida coast five years ago. (Florida Keys News Bureau/Reuters)
  • Cold shower
    A penguin cools off under a waterfall at Blair Drummond Safari Park in Scotland as summer temperatures rose. (PA)
The most impressive pictures from the worlds of science and technology this week, from a water-bombing helicopter to a desperate whale rescue.

More galleries

Futuristic dancers and swirling stars

(Sebastian Guillermaz/APOTY)

(Sebastian Guillermaz/APOTY)

Sci-fi balloons and hungry whales




Robot giraffe and double tornado

(Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

Supersonic selfie and eerie rivers

(David Cenciotti)

(David Cenciotti)

A brooding storm and a Super Earth

(Center for Astrophysics/Reuters)

(Center for Astrophysics/Reuters)

Roaring rockets and an Earth selfie

Roaring into space

Japan's H-IIA rocket lifts off from a space centre on the island of Tanegashima to deploy a new mapping satellite for surveying natural disaster damage. (AFP/Getty Images)

Chinese lightning and rocking robots

The bright stuff

Lightning arcs across the sky during a storm in Guangzhou, Guangdong province in China. (Reuters)

Fire bombing and huggy bears

Huggy bears

Two brown bears embrace inside an enclosure at a bear park in Zarnesti, central Romania. The bears are some of many rescued from roadside stalls or restaurants. (Reuters)

Blazing skies and moody twisters

Blazing sky

Clouds lit up by the setting sun at Mollymook Beach on the south coast of New South Wales, Australia. (Reuters)

Amazing air displays and breathtaking nature



Plane trails and tadpole stars

Sky lines

Contrails from jets flying overhead form a backdrop behind the National Museum of Art in Washington DC. (AP)

Volcanic plumes and home-made tanks

Tropical thunder

Ash rises into the sky from Ecuador’s Tungurahua volcano near Banos, south of the capital Quito. The volcano has been classified as active since 1999. (Reuters)

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