Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)Bright Comet SOHO
Discovered this month with an orbiting solar observatory, bright Comet SOHO has now emerged from the Sun's glare. This telephoto picture of the new naked-eye comet was taken by astrophotographer Michael Horn after sunset in the western twilight above Lake Samsonvale, Brisbane, Australia on May 18. The comet is seen in the constellation Orion.
Discovery Image: Comet SOHO (1998 J1)
Staring at the Sun from a vantage point in space (Kids, don't try this at home!), the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) has enabled the discovery of much about our closest star. It has also been used to discover about 50 comets.
Apollo 11: Onto a New World
A human first set foot on another world on July 20, 1969. This world was Earth's own Moon. Pictured above is Neil Armstrong preparing to take the historic first step. On the way down the Lunar Module ladder, Armstrong released equipment which included the television camera that recorded this fuzzy image.
NGC 6369: A Donut Shaped Nebula
Why isn't the star in the center of the nebula? NGC 6369 appears to be a fairly ordinary planetary nebula. It can be seen with a good telescope in the constellation of Ophiuchus. The gas expelled by the central star is bunched in the shape of a donut or cylinder.
Our Solar System from Voyager
After taking spectacular pictures of our Solar System's outer planets, Voyager 1 looked back at six planets to take our Solar System's first family portrait. Here Venus, Earth, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune, were all visible across the sky.
This image of the relatively quiet Sun was made using ultraviolet light emitted by ionized Helium atoms in the Solar chromosphere. Helium was first discovered in the Sun in 1868, its name fittingly derived from from the Greek word Helios, meaning Sun.
TRACE and the Active Sun
This dramatic high resolution picture looking across the edge of the Sun was taken April 24th by a telescope on board the newly launched Transition Region and Coronal Explorer (TRACE) satellite. It shows graceful arcs of intensely hot gas suspended in powerful looping magnetic fields which soar above a solar active region.
Comets move against a field of background stars. Their apparent motion is slow but carefull tracking reveals their orbits, allowing these visitors to the inner solar system to be identified as old or new acquaintances. Recently a new comet, designated 1998 H1, was discovered by observer Patrick L.
Occultations and Rising Moons
On April 23, the rising crescent Moon occulted (passed in front of) Venus and Jupiter. The double occultation was a rare event and only visible from certain locations tracing a path across Earth's surface. This dramatic telephoto picture was taken at one such location, Ascension Island in the South Atlantic.
Callisto is half rock and half ice. This moon of Jupiter is approximately the size of the planet Mercury, making it the third largest moon in the Solar System, after Ganymede and Titan. Callisto...