Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)HH 222: The Waterfall Nebula
What created the Waterfall Nebula? No one knows. The structure seen in the region of NGC 1999 in the Great Orion Molecular Cloud complex is one of the more mysterious structures yet found on the sky. Designated HH-222, the elongated gaseous stream stretches about ten light years and emits an unusual array of colors.
Jupiter's Clouds from New Horizons
The New Horizons spacecraft took some stunning images of Jupiter on its way out to Pluto. Famous for its Great Red Spot, Jupiter is also known for its regular, equatorial cloud bands, visible through even modest sized telescopes.
Jupiter Near Opposition
On October 29 (UT), Jupiter, the solar system's largest planet, will be at opposition, opposite the Sun in planet Earth's sky, shining brightly and rising as the Sun sets. That configuration results...
Clouds of Perseus
Cosmic clouds of gas and dust drift across this magnificent panorama, spanning some 17 degrees near the southern boundary of the heroic constellation Perseus. The collaborative skyscape begins with bluish stars of Perseus at the left, but the eye is drawn to the striking, red NGC 1499.
Tails of Comet Garradd
A good target for binoculars and small telescopes, Comet Garradd (C/2009 P1) now shines in planet Earth's evening skies, a steady performer but just below naked-eye visibility. Telescopic images like this composite from...
Draconid Meteors Over Spain
What are those streaks in the sky? They're meteors from the Draconids meteor shower that peaked earlier this month. The above composite image captured numerous meteor streaks over 90 minutes above the Celtic ruins of Capote in Badajoz province, Spain.
Movie: Approaching Light Speed
What would it look like to travel near the speed of light? Strange visual effects would appear as documented in the above relativistically-accurate animation. First of all, relativistic aberration would cause objects to appear to bunch up in front you.
MACS 1206: A Galaxy Cluster Gravitational Len
It is difficult to hide a galaxy behind a cluster of galaxies. The closer cluster's gravity will act like a huge lens, pulling images of the distant galaxy around the sides and greatly distorting them.
A Picturesque Venus Transit
The rare transit of Venus across the face of the Sun in 2004 was one of the better-photographed events in sky history. Both scientific and artistic images flooded in from the areas that could see the transit: Europe and much of Asia, Africa, and North America.
NGC 4565: Galaxy on Edge
Magnificent spiral galaxy NGC 4565 is viewed edge-on from planet Earth. Also known as the Needle Galaxy for its narrow profile, bright NGC 4565 is a stop on many telescopic tours of the northern sky, in the faint but well-groomed constellation Coma Berenices.