Photo: ESA/NASA

On Wednesday morning, European astronaut Andrew Gerst captured a unique set of photos of the massive Hurricane Florence barreling towards the East Coast.

At the time of these pictures, Florence was a Category 4 storm with a 25-mile-wide eye, based on hurricane hunter aircraft flying inside the storm. Gerst used "a super wide angle lens from the International Space Station, 400 km directly above the eye" to capture the images. These are angles few people ever get to witness firsthand, and almost manage to make the destructive storm look beautiful and serene — almost.

Photo: ESA/NASA
Photo: ESA/NASA
Photo: ESA/NASA
Photo: ESA/NASA

Track the most up-to-date forecast information and analysis here.

Go deeper:

Hurricane Florence to cause "unbelievable destruction" in Carolinas.

The ties between Hurricane Florence and climate change.

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1 hour ago - Sports

Disney announces partnership and documentary series with Colin Kaepernick

Photo: Carmen Mandato/Getty Images

The Walt Disney Company announced Monday that ESPN Films will produce an exclusive docuseries on political activist and former NFL player Colin Kaepernick as part of a larger deal with Kaepernick's production arm RA Vision Media.

Driving the news: Former ESPN personality Jemele Hill tweeted that she'll be serving as a producer on the docuseries, after leaving the network two years ago following a dramatic falling out in 2018. At the time, Hill's outspoken tweets about President Trump put the network in the crosshairs of a polarizing debate over race and politics.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 12 p.m. ET: 11,495,412 — Total deaths: 535,185 — Total recoveries — 6,217,763Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 12 p.m. ET: 2,897,613 — Total deaths: 129,953 — Total recoveries: 906,763 — Total tested: 35,512,916Map.
  3. Public health: Case growth outpacing testing in hotspots — Medical community urges public to wear masks.
  4. States: Texas hospitals in danger of being overwhelmed amid surge.
  5. Politics: Meadows says Trump "is right" to claim 99% of coronavirus cases are "harmless."

Court orders temporary shutdown of Dakota Access Pipeline

Protesters against the Dakota Access Pipeline in San Francisco in 2017. Photo: Joel Angel Juarez/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

A federal judge ordered Monday the shutdown of the Dakota Access Pipeline — a project at the heart of battles over oil-and-gas infrastructure — while the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers conducts a new environmental analysis.

Why it matters: The latest twist in the years-long fight over the pipeline is a defeat for the White House agenda of advancing fossil fuel projects and a win for Native Americans and environmentalists who oppose the project