Astronomy Picture of the Day

Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)

Разноцветная Венера Multicolor Venus

Brilliant Venus now shines in western skies at twilight. Seen as the prominent evening star, the planet is a tantalizing celestial beacon even for casual skygazers. Venus can offer less than satisfying telescopic views though. The planet is shrouded in reflective clouds that appear bright but featureless at the eyepiece.

Луна и планеты над Каталонией Moon and Planets Over Catalonia

Venus and Jupiter will appear unusually close in the sky over the next month. The planetary conjunction will be easily visible to the unaided eye because Venus will appear brighter than any background star, and Jupiter will be nearly as bright. To see the near-alignment, simply look to the west after sunset.

Противоположные хвосты кометы Гаррадда The Opposing Tails of Comet Garradd

Why does Comet Garradd have two tails? Visible on the left, Comet Garradd's dust tail is composed of ice and dust bits that trial the comet in its orbit around the Sun. Visible...

Ударная волна в сверхновой 1987A Shocked by Supernova 1987A

Twenty five years ago, the brightest supernova of modern times was sighted. Over time, astronomers have watched and waited for the expanding debris from this tremendous stellar explosion to crash into previously expelled material.

Загадочные кольца сверхновой 1987A The Mysterious Rings of Supernova 1987A

What's causing those odd rings in supernova 1987A? Twenty five years ago, in 1987, the brightest supernova in recent history was seen in the Large Magellanic Clouds. At the center of the above picture is an object central to the remains of the violent stellar explosion.

Квинтет Стефана Stephan s Quintet

The first identified compact galaxy group, Stephan's Quintet is featured in this eye-catching image constructed with data drawn from the extensive Hubble Legacy Archive. About 300 million light-years away, only four of these five galaxies are actually locked in a cosmic dance of repeated close encounters.

Туманности Возничего Aurigae Nebulae

Rich in star clusters and nebulae, the ancient constellation of Auriga, the Charioteer, rides high in northern winter night skies. Composed from narrow and broadband filter data and spanning nearly 8 Full Moons (4 degrees) on the sky, this deep telescopic view recorded in January shows off some of Auriga's celestial bounty.

Зодиакальный свет A Zodiacal Skyscape

Venus and Jupiter are this month's two brightest planets. Shortly after sunset on February 20, they dominate the sky above the western horizon and this snowy landscape. In clear and transparent skies over Cherry Springs State Park, Pennsylvania, USA, they are also seen immersed in Zodiacal light.

Ползущий камень в Долине Смерти A Sailing Stone in Death Valley

How did this big rock end up on this strange terrain? One of the more unusual places here on Earth occurs inside Death Valley, California, USA. There a dried lakebed named Racetrack Playa exists that is almost perfectly flat, with the odd exception of some very large stones, one of which is pictured above.

Противосумеречные лучи над Вайомингом Anticrepuscular Rays Over Wyoming

What's happening over the horizon? Although the scene may appear somehow supernatural, nothing more unusual is occurring than a setting Sun and some well placed clouds. Pictured above are anticrepuscular rays. To understand them, start by picturing common crepuscular rays that are seen any time that sunlight pours though scattered clouds.

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