Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)APOD: 2023 October 3 Б MyCn 18: The Engraved Hourglass Planetary Nebula
Do you see the hourglass shape -- or does it see you? If you can picture it, the rings of MyCn 18 trace the outline of an hourglass -- although one with an unusual eye in its center. Either way, the sands of time are running out for the central star of this hourglass-shaped planetary nebula.
APOD: 2023 October 2 Б Sprite Lightning in High Definition
Sometimes lightning occurs out near space. One such lightning type is red sprite lightning, which has only been photographed and studied on Earth over the past 25 years. The origins of all types of lightning remain topics for research, and scientists are still trying to figure out why red sprite lightning occurs at all.
APOD: 2023 October 1 Б A Desert Eclipse
A good place to see a ring-of-fire eclipse, it seemed, would be from a desert. In a desert, there should be relatively few obscuring clouds and trees. Therefore late December of 2019, a group...
A Harvest Moon over Tuscany
For northern hemisphere dwellers, September's Full Moon was the Harvest Moon. Reflecting warm hues at sunset, it rises behind cypress trees huddled on a hill top in Tuscany, Italy in this telephoto view from September 28.
Back from Bennu
Back from asteroid 101955 Bennu, a 110-pound, 31-inch wide sample return capsule rests in a desert on planet Earth in this photo, taken at the Department of Defense Utah Test and Training Range near Salt Lake City last Sunday, September 24.
The Deep Lagoon
Ridges of glowing interstellar gas and dark dust clouds inhabit the turbulent, cosmic depths of the Lagoon Nebula. Also known as M8, The bright star forming region is about 5,000 light-years distant. It makes for a popular stop on telescopic tours of the constellation Sagittarius toward the center of our Milky Way Galaxy.
APOD: 2023 September 27 Б STEVE and Milky Way Cross over Rural Road
Not every road ends in a STEVE. A week ago, a sky enthusiast's journey began with a goal: to photograph an aurora over Lake Huron. Driving through rural Ontario, Canada, the forecasted sky show started unexpectedly early, causing the photographer to stop before arriving at the scenic Great Lake.
APOD: 2023 September 26 Б IC 4592: The Blue Horsehead Reflection Nebula
Do you see the horse's head? What you are seeing is not the famous Horsehead nebula toward Orion, but rather a fainter nebula that only takes on a familiar form with deeper imaging. The main part of the here-imaged molecular cloud complex is reflection nebula IC 4592.
APOD: 2023 September 25 Б Arp 142: The Hummingbird Galaxy
What's happening to this spiral galaxy? Just a few hundred million years ago, NGC 2936, the upper of the two large galaxies shown at the bottom, was likely a normal spiral galaxy -- spinning, creating stars -- and minding its own business.
APOD: 2023 September 24 Б A Ring of Fire Sunrise Solar Eclipse
What's rising above the horizon behind those clouds? It's the Sun. Most sunrises don't look like this, though, because most sunrises don't include the Moon. In the early morning of 2013 May 10, however, from Western Australia, the Moon was between the Earth and the rising Sun.