Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)Virtual Flight over Asteroid Vesta
What would it be like to fly over the asteroid Vesta? Animators from the German Aerospace Center took actual images and height data from NASA's Dawn mission when it visited asteroid Vesta a few years ago and generated a virtual movie.
M83: The Thousand Ruby Galaxy
Big, bright, and beautiful, spiral galaxy M83 lies a mere twelve million light-years away, near the southeastern tip of the very long constellation Hydra. Prominent spiral arms traced by dark dust lanes and blue star clusters lend this galaxy its popular name, The Southern Pinwheel.
A Solstice Night in Paris
The night of June 21 was the shortest night for planet Earth's northern latitudes, so at latitude 48.9 degrees north, Paris was no exception. Still, the City of Light had an exceptionally luminous evening. Its skies were flooded with silvery night shining or noctilucent clouds after the solstice sunset.
The Longer Days
This persistent six month long exposure compresses the time from solstice to solstice (December 21, 2018 to June 16, 2019) into a single point of view. Dubbed a solargraph, the unconventional picture was recorded with a tall, tube-shaped pinhole camera using a piece of photographic paper.
Noctilucent Clouds, Reflections, and Silhouettes
Sometimes it's night on the ground but day in the air. As the Earth rotates to eclipse the Sun, sunset rises up from the ground. Therefore, at sunset on the ground, sunlight still shines on clouds above.
25 Brightest Stars in the Night Sky
Do you know the names of some of the brightest stars? It's likely that you do, even though some bright stars have names so old they date back to near the beginning of written language.
Anticrepuscular Rays Converge Opposite the Sun
Is there ever anything interesting to see in the direction opposite the Sun? Sometimes there is. Notable items include your own shadow, a shadow of the Moon during a total solar eclipse, a full...
Carina Nebula Panorama from Hubble
How do violent stars affect their surroundings? To help find out, astronomers created a 48-frame high-resolution, controlled-color panorama of the center of the Carina Nebula, one of the largest star forming regions on the night sky. The featured image, taken in 2007, was the most detailed image of the Carina Nebula yet taken.
Ares 3 Landing Site: The Martian Revisited
This close-up from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter's HiRISE camera shows weathered craters and windblown deposits in southern Acidalia Planitia. A striking shade of blue in standard HiRISE image colors, to the human eye the area would probably look grey or a little reddish.
Today, the solstice is at 15:54 Universal Time, the Sun reaching the northernmost declination in its yearly journey through planet Earth's sky. A June solstice marks the astronomical beginning of summer in the northern hemisphere and winter in the south.