Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)Stars and Lightning Over Greece
It may appear, at first, like the Galaxy is producing the lightning, but really it's the Earth. In the foreground of the above picturesque nighttime landscape is the Greek Island of Corfu, with town lights surrounding Lake Korrision. Visible farther in the distance are lights from the town of Preveza on the Greek mainland.
Circling a Black Hole at its Photon Sphere
What would it look like to go right up to a black hole? One particularly interesting place near a black hole is its photon sphere, where photons can orbit in circles, a sphere 50 percent further out than the event horizon.
Orbiting a Black Hole
What would it look like to orbit a black hole? Since the strong gravity of the black hole can significantly alter light paths, conditions would indeed look strange. For one thing, the entire sky would be visible, since even stars behind the black hole would have their light bent to the observer's eye.
Saturns Hyperion: A Moon with Odd Craters
What lies at the bottom of Hyperion's strange craters? Nobody's sure. To help find out, the robot Cassini spacecraft now orbiting Saturn swooped past the sponge-textured moon in 2005 and 2010 and took images of unprecedented detail.
PanSTARRS: The Anti Tail Comet
Once known as Earth's sunset comet, PanSTARRS (C/2011 L4) is up all night now, but only for northern hemisphere skygazers. Telescopes are required to track its progress as it fades and heads for the outer solar system.
A Super Moon s Halo
A Full Perigee Moon rose as the Sun set last Sunday. At its closest to Earth it was, by just a bit, the year's brightest and largest Full Moon also known as a Super Moon.
Noctilucent Clouds over Moscow
This panoramic night scene from June 8 looks out across a Moscow skyline from atop the main building of Lomonosov Moscow State University. Shining in the darkened sky above are widespread noctilucent clouds. From...
M31: The Andromeda Galaxy
Andromeda is the nearest major galaxy to our own Milky Way Galaxy. Our Galaxy is thought to look much like Andromeda. Together these two galaxies dominate the Local Group of galaxies. The diffuse light from Andromeda is caused by the hundreds of billions of stars that compose it.
Rock Nest Panorama from Curiosity on Mars
This is Mars -- have a look around. More specifically, this is one area picked for its promise of holding clues to the habitability of Mars to ancient life. To better search for telling leads, the robotic Curiosity rover took a series of detailed images from a location called Rock Nest.
The Porpoise Galaxy from Hubble
What's happening to this spiral galaxy? Just a few hundred million years ago, NGC 2936, the upper of the two large galaxies shown, was likely a normal spiral galaxy -- spinning, creating stars -- and minding its own business.