Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)NGC 6888: The Crescent Nebula
NGC 6888, also known as the Crescent Nebula, is a cosmic bubble about 25 light-years across, blown by winds from its central, bright, massive star. This beautiful telescopic view combines a composite color image with narrow band data that isolates light from hydrogen and oxygen atoms in the wind-blown nebula.
A Mars Panorama from the Phoenix Lander
If you could stand on Mars, what would you see? The robotic Phoenix spacecraft that just landed on Mars in May recorded the above spectacular panorama. The above image is actually a digital combination of over 100 camera pointings and surveys fully 360 degrees around the busy robotic laboratory.
Black Hole Candidate Cygnus X 1
Is that a black hole? Quite possibly. The Cygnus X-1 binary star system contains one of the best candidates for a black hole. The system was discovered because it is one of the brightest...
The Eagle Rises
Get out your red/blue glasses and check out this remarkable stereo view from lunar orbit. Created from two photographs (AS11-44-6633, AS11-44-6634) taken by astronaut Michael Collins during the 1969 Apollo 11 mission, the 3D anaglyph features the lunar module ascent stage, dubbed The Eagle, as it rises to meet the command module in lunar orbit.
Dark skies are favored for viewing meteor showers -- so the best viewing of this year's Perseids will occur in the early morning. While the Perseid meteor shower is scheduled to peak over...
The Crown of the Sun
During a total solar eclipse, the Sun's extensive outer atmosphere, or corona, is an inspirational sight. The subtle shades and shimmering features of the corona that engage the eye span a brightness range of over 10,000 to 1, making them notoriously difficult to capture in a single picture.
At the Sun s Edge
A train trip on the Trans-Siberian railway to Novosibirsk resulted in this stunning view along the edge of the Sun recorded during the August 1st total solar eclipse. The picture is a composite...
NGC 1818: A Young Globular Cluster
Globular clusters once ruled the Milky Way. Back in the old days, back when our Galaxy first formed, perhaps thousands of globular clusters roamed our Galaxy. Today, there are perhaps 200 left. Many globular clusters were destroyed over the eons by repeated fateful encounters with each other or the Galactic center.
A Total Solar Eclipse Over China
What's that black dot over the Sun? The Moon. This past weekend, the Sun went dark during the day as the Moon completely covered it. The total solar eclipse was visible over a thin swath of Earth extending from northern Canada to China.
X Rays from the Cats Eye Nebula
Haunting patterns within planetary nebula NGC 6543 readily suggest its popular moniker -- the Cat's Eye nebula. Starting in 1995, stunning false-color optical images from the Hubble Space Telescope detailed the swirls of this glowing nebula, known to be the gaseous shroud expelled from a dying sun-like star about 3,000 light-years from Earth.