Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)Veil Nebula: Wisps of an Exploded Star
Wisps like this are all that remain visible of a Milky Way star. About 7,000 years ago that star exploded in a supernova leaving the Veil Nebula. At the time, the expanding cloud was likely as bright as a crescent Moon, remaining visible for weeks to people living at the dawn of recorded history.
Orion above Easter Island
Why were the statues on Easter Island built? No one is sure. What is sure is that over 800 large stone statues exist there. The Easter Island statues, stand, on the average, over twice as tall as a person and have over 200 times as much mass.
Bright Spiral Galaxy M81
One of the brightest galaxies in planet Earth's sky is similar in size to our Milky Way Galaxy: big, beautiful M81. This grand spiral galaxy can be found toward the northern constellation of the Great Bear (Ursa Major).
Cassini s Final Image
As planned, the Cassini spacecraft impacted the upper atmosphere of Saturn on September 15, after a 13 year long exploration of the Saturnian System. With spacecraft thrusters firing until the end, its atmospheric entry followed an unprecedented series of 22 Grand Finale dives between Saturn and rings.
100 Steps Forward
A beautiful conjunction of Venus and Moon, human, sand, and Milky Way is depicted in this night skyscape from planet Earth. The scene is a panorama of 6 photos taken in a moment near the end of a journey.
Flare Well AR2673
Almost out of view from our fair planet, rotating around the Sun's western edge giant active region AR2673 lashed out with another intense solar flare followed by a large coronal mass ejection on September 10.
NGC 6334: The Cats Paw Nebula
Nebulas are perhaps as famous for being identified with familiar shapes as perhaps cats are for getting into trouble. Still, no known cat could have created the vast Cat's Paw Nebula visible in Scorpius.
A Total Solar Eclipse Close Up in Real Time
How would you feel if the Sun disappeared? Many eclipse watchers across the USA surprised themselves with the awe that they felt and the exclamations that they made as the Sun momentarily disappeared behind the Moon.
Cassini Approaches Saturn
What would it look like to approach Saturn in a spaceship? One doesn't have to just imagine -- the Cassini spacecraft did just this in 2004, recording thousands of images along the way, and hundreds of thousands more since entering orbit.
Swirling Around the Eye of Hurricane Irma
Why does a hurricane have an eye at its center? No one is yet sure. What happens in and around a hurricane's eye is well documented, though. Warm air rises around the eye's edges, cools, swirls, and spreads out over the large storm, sinking primarily at the far edges.