Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)M51: The Whirlpool Galaxy from Hubble
The Whirlpool Galaxy is a classic spiral galaxy. At only 30 million light years distant and fully 60 thousand light years across, M51, also known as NGC 5194, is one of the brightest and most picturesque galaxies on the sky.
Find the Man in the Moon
Have you ever seen the Man in the Moon? This common question plays on the ability of humans to see pareidolia -- imagining familiar icons where they don't actually exist. The textured surface...
The Road and the Milky Way
At night you can follow this road as it passes through the Dark Sky Alqueva reserve not too far from Alentejo, Portugal. Or you could stop, look up, and follow the Milky Way through the sky. Both stretch from horizon to horizon in this 180 degree panorama recorded on June 3.
Arp 286: Trio in Virgo
This colorful telescopic field of view features a trio of interacting galaxies almost 90 million light-years away, toward the constellation Virgo. On the right two spiky, foreground Milky Way stars echo the extragalactic hues, a reminder that stars in our own galaxy are like those in distant island universes.
Cosmic Clouds in Cygnus
These cosmic clouds of gas and dust drift through rich star fields along the plane of our Milky Way Galaxy toward the high flying constellation Cygnus. They're too faint to be seen with the unaided eye though, even on a clear, dark night.
Ship Tracks over the Pacific Ocean
What are those unusual streaks? Some images of planet Earth show clear bright streaks that follow the paths of ships. Known as ship tracks, these low and narrow bands are caused by the ship's engine exhaust.
NGC 6188: Dragons of Ara
Do dragons fight on the altar of the sky? Although it might appear that way, these dragons are illusions made of thin gas and dust. The emission nebula NGC 6188, home to the glowing...
Milky Way Galaxy Doomed: Collision with Andromeda Pending
Will our Milky Way Galaxy collide one day with its larger neighbor, the Andromeda Galaxy? Most likely, yes. Careful plotting of slight displacements of M31's stars relative to background galaxies on recent Hubble...
Two Black Holes Dancing in 3C 75
What's happening at the center of active galaxy 3C 75? The two bright sources at the center of this composite x-ray (blue)/ radio (pink) image are co-orbiting supermassive black holes powering the giant radio source 3C 75.
Tau Herculids from Space
On May 31 tens of parallel meteor streaks were recorded in this 8 degree wide field of view of planet Earth's limb from space. The image is one of a series of 5 minute long observations by the orbiting Yangwang-1 space telescope.