Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)Stars and Gas of the Running Chicken Nebula
To some, it looks like a giant chicken running across the sky. To others, it looks like a gaseous nebula where star formation takes place. Cataloged as IC 2944, the Running Chicken Nebula spans about 100 light years and lies about 6,000 light years away toward the constellation of the Centaur (Centaurus).
Galaxy Evolution Tracking Animation
How did the universe evolve from such a smooth beginning? To help understand, computational cosmologists and NASA produced the featured time-lapse animated video depicting a computer simulation of part of the universe. The 100-million light-year simulation starts about 20 million years after the Big Bang and runs until the present.
Valles Marineris: The Grand Canyon of Mars
Mars will look good in Earth's skies over the next few days -- but not this good. To get a view this amazing, a spacecraft had to actually visit the red planet. Running across the image center, though, is one the largest canyons in the Solar System.
Cat s Eye Wide and Deep
The Cat's Eye Nebula (NGC 6543) is one of the best known planetary nebulae in the sky. Its more familiar outlines are seen in the brighter central region of the nebula in this impressive wide-angle view. But the composite image combines many short and long exposures to also reveal an extremely faint outer halo.
The Great Carina Nebula
A jewel of the southern sky, the Great Carina Nebula, also known as NGC 3372, spans over 300 light-years, one of our galaxy's largest star forming regions. Like the smaller, more northerly Great...
IC 5067 in the Pelican Nebula
The prominent ridge of emission featured in this sharp, colorful skyscape is cataloged as IC 5067. Part of a larger emission nebula with a distinctive shape, popularly called The Pelican Nebula, the ridge spans about 10 light-years following the curve of the cosmic pelican's head and neck.
NGC 5078 and Friends
This sharp telescopic field of view holds two bright galaxies. Barred spiral NGC 5101 (top right) and nearly edge-on system NGC 5078 are separated on the sky by about 0.5 degrees or about the apparent width of a full moon.
Milky Way Over the Spanish Peaks
That's not lightning, and it did not strike between those mountains. The diagonal band is actually the central band of our Milky Way Galaxy, while the twin peaks are actually called the Spanish Peaks -- but located in Colorado, USA.
Inside a Daya Bay Antineutrino Detector
Why is there more matter than antimatter in the Universe? To better understand this facet of basic physics, energy departments in China and the USA led in the creation of the Daya Bay Reactor Neutrino Experiment.
LL Orionis: When Cosmic Winds Collide
What created this great arc in space? This arcing, graceful structure is actually a bow shock about half a light-year across, created as the wind from young star LL Orionis collides with the Orion Nebula flow.