Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)Venus Once Molten Surface
If you could look at Venus with radar eyes - this is what you might see. This computer reconstruction of the surface of Venus was created from data from the Magellan spacecraft. Magellan orbited Venus and used radar to map our neighboring planet's surface between 1990 and 1994.
Inside The Elephant's Trunk
In December of 2003, the world saw spectacular first images from the Spitzer Space Telescope, including this penetrating interior view of an otherwise opaque dark globule known as the Elephant's Trunk Nebula. Seen...
Sideways Galaxy NGC 3628
Dark dust lanes cutting across the middle of this gorgeous island universe strongly hint that NGC 3628 is a spiral galaxy seen sideways. About 35 million light-years away in the northern springtime constellation...
Solar Eclipse in View
Friday's solar eclipse will be a rare hybrid - briefly appearing as either an annular eclipse or a total eclipse when viewed from along the narrow track of the Moon's shadow. Unfortunately that...
The M7 Open Star Cluster in Scorpius
M7 is one of the most prominent open clusters of stars on the sky. The cluster, dominated by bright blue stars, can be seen with the naked eye in a dark sky in the tail of the constellation of Scorpius.
Light from a Extra Solar Planet
Light emitted by a planet far beyond our Solar System has been identified for the first time. The planet, illustrated in the above drawing, had its light detected by comparing the brightness of only...
NGC 1316: After Galaxies Collide
How did this strange-looking galaxy form? Astronomers turn detectives when trying to figure out the cause of unusual jumbles of stars, gas, and dust like NGC 1316. A preliminary inspection indicates that NGC 1316 is an enormous elliptical galaxy that includes dark dust lanes usually found in a spiral.
The Galactic Center Radio Arc
What causes this unusual structure near the center of our Galaxy? The long parallel rays slanting across the top of the above radio image are known collectively as the Galactic Center Radio Arc and jut straight out from the Galactic plane.
Cyg X-1: Can Black Holes Form in the Dark?
The formation of a black hole from the collapsing core of a massive star is thought to be heralded by a spectacular supernova explosion. Such an extremely energetic collapse is also a leading explanation for the mysterious cosmic gamma-ray bursts.
Water on Mars
Can you help discover water on Mars? Finding water on different regions on Mars has implications for understanding its complex geologic history, the possible existence of past life and the sustenance of potential future astronauts.