Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)The North America Nebula
Here's a familiar shape in an unfamiliar location! This emission nebula is famous partly because it resembles Earth's continent of North America. To the right of the North America Nebula, cataloged as NGC 7000, is a less luminous Pelican Nebula.
The Small Cloud of Magellan (SMC)
Almost unknown to casual observers in the northern hemisphere, the southern sky contains two diffuse wonders known as the Magellanic Clouds. The Magellanic Clouds are small irregular galaxies orbiting our own larger Milky Way spiral galaxy.
3D View Of Jupiter's Clouds
Every day is a cloudy day on Jupiter, the Solar System's reigning gas giant. This 3-dimensional visualization presents a simplified model view from between Jovian cloud decks based on imaging and spectral data recorded by the Galileo spacecraft. The separation between the cloud layers and the height variations have been exaggerated.
Recent Leonid meteor showers have been rich in bright fireball meteors which leave lingering trails stretching across the night sky. These trails, or persistent trains, are mysteriously self-luminescent and do not shine by reflected light.
Calderas And Cliffs Near Io's South Pole
Braving intense radiation belts, the Galileo spacecraft once again flew past the surface of Jupiter's moon Io (sounds like EYE-oh) on February 22. Combining high resolution black and white images from that flyby...
Filaments In The Cygnus Loop
Subtle and delicate in appearance, these are filaments of shocked interstellar gas -- part of the expanding blast wave from a violent stellar explosion. Recorded in November 1997 with the Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2 onboard the Hubble Space Telescope, the picture is a closeup of a supernova remnant known as the Cygnus Loop.
Layers of the Martian South Polar Cap
The South Pole of Mars is stranger than was previously thought. Pictured above are unexpectedly complex layers photographed recently by the Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft currently orbiting Mars. The layers probably include carbon dioxide ice, water ice, rock and dust.
Reflection Nebula M78
An eerie blue glow and ominous columns of dark dust highlight M78, a bright reflection nebula in the constellation of Orion. The dust not only absorbs light, but also reflects the light of several bright blue stars that formed recently in the nebula.
Giant Cluster Bends, Breaks Images
What are those strange blue objects? Many are images of a single, unusual, beaded, blue, ring-like galaxy which just happens to line-up behind a giant cluster of galaxies. Cluster galaxies here appear yellow and -- together with the cluster's dark matter -- act as a gravitational lens.
Journey to the Center of the Galaxy
In Jules Verne's science fiction classic A Journey to the Center of the Earth, Professor Hardwigg and his fellow explorers encounter many strange and exciting wonders. What wonders lie at the center of our Galaxy?