Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)Reflections on the Horsehead Nebula
Sculpted by stellar winds and radiation, a magnificent interstellar dust cloud by chance has assumed this recognizable shape. Fittingly named the Horsehead Nebula, it is some 1,500 light-years distant, embedded in the vast Orion cloud complex.
Simeis 147: Supernova Remnant from Palomar
It's easy to get lost following the intricate filaments in this detailed image of faint supernova remnant Simeis 147. Seen towards the constellation Taurus it covers nearly 3 degrees (6 full moons) on the sky corresponding to a width of 150 light-years at the stellar debris cloud's estimated distance of 3,000 light-years.
Vista Inside Gusev Crater on Mars
What is the geologic history of Mars? To help find out, the robot Spirit rover explored the terrain on the way up to the top of Husband Hill and took pictures along the way.
Light Echoes from V838 Mon
What caused this outburst of V838 Mon? For reasons unknown, star V838 Mon's outer surface suddenly greatly expanded with the result that it became the brightest star in the entire Milky Way Galaxy in January 2002. Then, just as suddenly, it faded.
A Stereo Sun
A stereo view of the closest star, this creatively composited image was constructed from an extensive archive of pictures taken between March 2004 and April 2005. When viewed with red/blue glasses, the Sun's disk and surface features, including sunspots, filaments, and prominences, stand out in an exaggerated stereo perspective.
Moon Over Antarctica
Last week, the nearly Full Moon set along the northern horizion - as seen from Davis Station, Antarctica. The squashed orange pumpkin shape just silhouettes the peak of a distant iceberg in this stunning view.
Dusty NGC 1333
Dusty NGC 1333 is seen as a reflection nebula in visible light images, sporting bluish hues characteristic of starlight reflected by dust. But at longer infrared wavelengths, the interstellar dust itself glows - shown in red in this false-color Spitzer Space Telescope image.
Pandora: A Shepherd Moon of Saturn
What does Saturn's small moon Pandora look like? To help find out, the robot Cassini spacecraft now orbiting Saturn passed about 50,000 kilometers from the unusual moon in early September. The highest resolution image of Pandora ever taken was then captured and is shown above in representative colors.
A Galactic Collision in Cluster Abell 1185
What is a guitar doing in a cluster of galaxies? Colliding. Clusters of galaxies are sometimes packed so tight that the galaxies that compose them collide. A prominent example occurs on the left of the above image of the rich cluster of galaxies Abell 1185.
The Missing Craters of Asteroid Itokawa
Where are the craters on asteroid Itokawa? No one knows. The Japanese robot probe Hayabusa recently approached the Earth-crossing asteroid and is returning pictures showing a surface unlike any other Solar System body yet photographed -- a surface possibly devoid of craters.