Astronomy Picture of the Day

Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)

M27: не комета M27: Not a Comet

While hunting for comets in the skies above 18th century France, astronomer Charles Messier diligently kept a list of the things he encountered that were definitely not comets. This is number 27 on his now famous not-a-comet list.

Грозовой воротник над Висконсином Roll Cloud Over Wisconsin

What kind of cloud is this? A type of arcus cloud called a roll cloud. These rare long clouds may form near advancing cold fronts. In particular, a downdraft from an advancing storm front can cause moist warm air to rise, cool below its dew point, and so form a cloud.

Самый холодный коричневый карлик The Coldest Brown Dwarf

This cosmic snapshot composed with image data from NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) satellite captures a multitude of faint stars and distant galaxies toward the constellation Lyra at wavelengths longer than visible light. But the object circled at the center is not quite a star.

Хиксон 44 во Льве Hickson 44 in Leo

Scanning the skies for galaxies, Canadian astronomer Paul Hickson and colleagues identified some 100 compact groups of galaxies, now appropriately called Hickson Compact Groups. The four prominent galaxies seen in this intriguing telescopic skyscape are one such group, Hickson 44, about 100 million light-years distant toward the constellation Leo.

Выброс из галактики M87 A Jet from Galaxy M87

What's causing a huge jet to emanate from the center of galaxy M87? Although the unusual jet was first noticed early in the twentieth century, the exact cause is still debated. The above picture taken by the Hubble Space Telescope in 1998 shows clear details, however.

Ураган Айрин формируется Hurricane Irene Forms

How does a hurricane form? Although a complete picture is still being researched, insight into this process might be gleaned by watching the above time lapse movie of the formation of Hurricane Irene, a large storm system currently threatening the eastern seaboard of the USA.

Молодая сверхновая в близкой галактике "Вертушка" A Young Supernova in the Nearby Pinwheel Galaxy

A nearby star has exploded and telescopes all over the world are turning to monitor it. The supernova, dubbed PTF 11kly, was discovered by computer only two days ago as part of the Palomar Transit Factory (PTF) sky survey utilizing the wide angle 1.2-meter Samuel Oschwin Telescope in California.

Портрет NGC 281 Portrait of NGC 281

Look through the cosmic cloud cataloged as NGC 281 and it's almost easy to miss stars of open cluster IC 1590. But, formed within the nebula, that cluster's young, massive stars ultimately power the pervasive nebular glow.

Радужная облачная шапка над Эфиопией A Pileus Iridescent Cloud Over Ethiopia

Yes, but how many dark clouds have a multicolored lining? Pictured, behind this darker cloud, is a pileus iridescent cloud, a group of water droplets that have a uniformly similar size and so together diffract different colors of sunlight by different amounts.

Полярное сияние над Гренландией Aurora Over Greenland

This aurora arched from horizon to horizon. During the current Shelios expedition to observe and learn about the northern lights, the sky last weekend did not disappoint. After sunset and some careful photographic planning, the above image was taken from the expedition's Qaleraliq campsite in southern Greenland.

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