Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)Saturns Hexagon Comes to Light
Believe it or not, this is the North Pole of Saturn. It is unclear how an unusual hexagonal cloud system that surrounds Saturn's north pole was created, keeps its shape, or how long it will last.
Days in the Sun
From solstice to solstice, this six month long exposure compresses time from the 21st of June till the 21st of December, 2011, into a single point of view. Dubbed a solargraph, the unconventional picture was recorded with a pinhole camera made from a drink can lined with a piece of photographic paper.
The Wolf s Moon
A Full Moon rising can be a dramatic celestial sight, and Full Moons can have many names. Captured on January 8 from Ötersund, Sweden, this evocative moonrise portrait might make you feel the cold of winter in the north.
The Hunter s Stars
Begirt with many a blazing star, Orion, the Hunter, is one of the most easily recognizable constellations. In this night skyscape from January 15, the hunter's stars rise in the northern hemisphere...
Cygnus X: The Inner Workings of a Nearby Star Factory
How do stars form? To help study this complex issue, astronomers took a deep infrared image of Cygnus X, the largest known star forming region in the entire Milky Way Galaxy. The above recently-released...
IC 2118: The Witch Head Nebula
Double, double toil and trouble; Fire burn, and cauldron bubble -- maybe Macbeth should have consulted the Witch Head Nebula. This suggestively shaped reflection nebula is associated with the bright star Rigel in the constellation Orion.
Zodiacal Light and the False Dawn
Is it dawn or false dawn? During certain times of the year, the horizon near the rising Sun will begin to glow unusually early. This early glow does not originate directly from the Sun, but rather from sunlight reflected by interplanetary dust.
Infrared Portrait of the Large Magellanic Cloud
Cosmic dust clouds ripple across this infrared portrait of our Milky Way's satellite galaxy, the Large Magellanic Cloud. In fact, the remarkable composite image from the Herschel Space Observatory and the Spitzer Space Telescope show that dust clouds fill this neighboring dwarf galaxy, much like dust along the plane of the Milky Way itself.
NGC 6369: The Little Ghost Nebula
This pretty planetary nebula, cataloged as NGC 6369, was discovered by 18th century astronomer William Herschel as he used a telescope to explore the medicinal constellation Ophiucus. Round and planet-shaped, the nebula is also relatively faint and has acquired the popular moniker of Little Ghost Nebula.
Saturns Iapetus: Painted Moon
What has happened to Saturn's moon Iapetus? Vast sections of this strange world are dark as coal, while others are as bright as ice. The composition of the dark material is unknown, but infrared spectra indicate that it possibly contains some dark form of carbon.