Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)Moon, Mars, and Milky Way
Just two weeks ago, dark skies over the desert in northern Iran held this alluring celestial vista. The dramatic digital mosaic finds the Moon and Mars alongside the Milky Way's dusty rifts, stars, and nebulae.
Spiral Galaxy NGC 6744
Beautiful spiral galaxy NGC 6744 is nearly 175,000 light-years across, larger than our own Milky Way. It lies some 30 million light-years distant in the southern constellation Pavo and appears as only a faint, extended object in small telescopes. We see the disk of the nearby island universe tilted towards our line of sight.
Red Planet Red Moon and Mars
Mars is also known as The Red Planet, often seen with a reddish tinge in dark night skies. Mars shines brightly at the upper left of this gorgeous morning twilight view from Mornington Peninsula, Victoria, Australia, but the Moon and planet Earth look redder still. Taken on July 27, the totally eclipsed Moon is setting.
Animation: Perseid Meteor Shower
Where do Perseid meteors come from? Mostly small bits of stony grit, Perseid meteoroids were once expelled from Comet Swift-Tuttle and continue to follow this comet's orbit as they slowly disperse. The featured animation depicts the entire meteoroid stream as it orbits our Sun.
Eclipsed Moon and Mars over Mountains
There is something unusual about this astronomically-oriented photograph. It's not obvious -- it was discovered only during post-processing. It is not the Moon, although capturing the Moon rising during a total lunar eclipse is quite an unusually interesting sight.
Live: Cosmic Rays from Minnesota
Cosmic rays from outer space go through your body every second. Typically, they do you no harm. The featured image shows some of these fast moving particles as streaks going through Fermilab's NOvA Far Detector located in Ash River, Minnesota, USA.
Trapezium: At the Heart of Orion
Near the center of this sharp cosmic portrait, at the heart of the Orion Nebula, are four hot, massive stars known as the Trapezium. Gathered within a region about 1.5 light-years in radius, they dominate the core of the dense Orion Nebula Star Cluster.
Central Cygnus Skyscape
Supergiant star Gamma Cygni lies at the center of the Northern Cross, famous asterism in the constellation Cygnus the Swan. Known by its proper name, Sadr, the bright star also lies at the center...
Central Lunar Eclipse
Reddened by scattered sunlight, the Moon in the center is passing through the center of Earth's dark umbral shadow in this July 27 lunar eclipse sequence. Left to right the three images are from the start, maximum, and end to 103 minutes of totality from the longest lunar eclipse of the 21st century.
Eclipse over the Gulf of Poets
The total phase of the July 27 lunar eclipse lasted for an impressive 103 minutes. That makes it the longest total lunar eclipse of the 21st century. The Moon passed through the center of Earth's shadow while the Moon was near apogee, the most distant point in its elliptical orbit.