Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)IC 1805: The Heart Nebula
What energizes the Heart Nebula? First, the large emission nebula dubbed IC 1805 looks, in whole, like a human heart. The nebula glows brightly in red light emitted by its most prominent element: hydrogen. The red glow and the larger shape are all powered by a small group of stars near the nebula's center.
Pluto in True Color
What color is Pluto, really? It took some effort to figure out. Even given all of the images sent back to Earth when the robotic New Horizons spacecraft sped past Pluto in 2015, processing these multi-spectral frames to approximate what the human eye would see was challenging.
M31: The Andromeda Galaxy
How far can you see? The most distant object easily visible to the unaided eye is M31, the great Andromeda Galaxy, over two million light-years away. Without a telescope, even this immense spiral galaxy appears as an unremarkable, faint, nebulous cloud in the constellation Andromeda.
Perijove 11: Passing Jupiter
Here comes Jupiter! NASA's robotic spacecraft Juno is continuing on its 53-day, highly-elongated orbits around our Solar System's largest planet. The featured video is from perijove 11 in early 2018, the eleventh time Juno has passed near Jupiter since it arrived in mid-2016.
In Wolf s Cave
The mysterious blue reflection nebula found in catalogs as VdB 152 or Ced 201 really is very faint. It lies at the tip of the long dark nebula Barnard 175 in a dusty complex that has also been called Wolf's Cave.
Recycling Cassiopeia A
Massive stars in our Milky Way Galaxy live spectacular lives. Collapsing from vast cosmic clouds, their nuclear furnaces ignite and create heavy elements in their cores. After a few million years, the enriched material is blasted back into interstellar space where star formation can begin anew.
The Large Cloud of Magellan
The 16th century Portuguese navigator Ferdinand Magellan and his crew had plenty of time to study the southern sky during the first circumnavigation of planet Earth. As a result, two fuzzy cloud-like objects easily...
The Spider Nebula in Infrared
Will the spider ever catch the fly? Not if both are large emission nebulas toward the constellation of the Charioteer (Auriga). The spider-shaped gas cloud on the left is actually an emission nebula labelled...
Unusual Signal Suggests Neutron Star Destroyed by Black Hole
What created this unusual explosion? Three weeks ago, gravitational wave detectors in the USA and Europe -- the LIGO and Virgo detectors -- detected a burst of gravitational radiation that had the oscillating pattern expected when a black hole destroys a neutron star.
The Moon and Jupiter over the Alps
What are those bright lights in the sky ahead? When hiking a high mountain pass in northern Italy three weeks ago, a conjunction between our Moon and the distant planet Jupiter was visible as both rose together in the southwest after sunset.