Astronomy Picture of the Day

Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)

Туманность Ориона и Конская Голова Horsehead and Orion Nebulae

Adrift 1,500 light-years away in one of the night sky's most recognizable constellations, the glowing Orion Nebula and the dark Horsehead Nebula are contrasting cosmic vistas. They appear in opposite corners of this stunning mosaic taken with a digital camera attached to a small telescope.

Запуск "Кеплера" Kepler s Streak

Streaking skyward, a Delta II rocket carries NASA's Kepler spacecraft aloft into the clear night of March 6. The dramatic scene was recorded in a time exposure from the crowded pier in Jetty Park at the northern end of Cocoa Beach, Florida, about 3 miles from the Cape Canaveral launch site.

Неполная Европа Gibbous Europa

Although the phase of this moon might appear familiar, the moon itself might not. In fact, this gibbous phase shows part of Jupiter's moon Europa. The robot spacecraft Galileo captured this image mosaic during its mission orbiting Jupiter from 1995 - 2003.

Комета Лулинь и далекие галактики Comet Lulin and Distant Galaxies

Now fading in our night sky, Comet Lulin has provided some lovely cosmic vistas. Moving rapidly against the background of stars, Lulin briefly posed with the likes of Saturn, and Regulus (Alpha Leo). But here it is seen against a field of distant galaxies.

Полумесяцы Луны и Венеры Crescent Moon and Venus

Last Friday, the Moon and Venus shared the early evening sky in a beautiful conjunction. Separated by only about 2 degrees, they also were both in a crescent phase. Just like our Moon, Venus can appear as a full disk or a thin crescent.

IC 5146: туманность Кокон IC 5146: The Cocoon Nebula

Inside the Cocoon Nebula is a newly developing cluster of stars. Cataloged as IC 5146, the beautiful nebula is nearly 15 light-years wide, located some 4,000 light years away toward the northern constellation Cygnus.

Вид на Сатурн Saturn in View

Very good telescopic views of Saturn can be expected in the coming days as the ringed planet nears opposition on March 8th, its closest approach to Earth in 2009. Of course, opposition means opposite the Sun in planet Earth's sky - an arrangement that occurs almost yearly for Saturn.

Туманность Улитка: вид из обсерватории Ла Силла The Helix Nebula from La Silla Observatory

Will our Sun look like this one day? The Helix Nebula is one of brightest and closest examples of a planetary nebula, a gas cloud created at the end of the life of a Sun-like star.

Большой дневной болид 1972 года, коснувшийся Земли Earthgrazer: The Great Daylight Fireball of 1972

What is that streaking across the sky? A bright earthgrazing meteor. In 1972, an unusually bright meteor from space was witnessed bouncing off Earth's atmosphere, much like a skipping stone can bounce off of a calm lake.

Омега Центавра — крупнейшее известное нам шаровое скопление Omega Centauri: The Largest Globular Cluster Known

This huge ball of stars predates our Sun. Long before humankind evolved, before dinosaurs roamed, and even before our Earth existed, ancient globs of stars condensed and orbited a young Milky Way Galaxy. Of the 200 or so globular clusters that survive today, Omega Centauri is the largest, containing over ten million stars.

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