Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)One Armed Spiral Galaxy NGC 4725
While most spiral galaxies, including our own Milky Way, have two or more spiral arms, NGC 4725 seems to have only one. In this sharp color image, the solo spira mirabilis is tightly wound, traced by bluish, newborn star clusters.
Stars and Dust Across Corona Australis
Cosmic dust clouds sprawl across a rich field of stars in this sweeping telescopic vista near the northern boundary of Corona Australis, the Southern Crown. Probably less than 500 light-years away and effectively blocking...
Sunspots on a Cloudy Day
On June 2nd, clouds over Stuttgart, Germany parted to reveal what has become a relatively rare sight, spots on the Sun. In fact, the roughly 11-year solar activity cycle is still in a surprisingly deep minimum and the years 2008 and 2009 have had the lowest sunspot counts since the 1950s.
VB 10: A Large Planet Orbiting a Small Star
Can a planet be as large as the star that it orbits? Recent observations have discovered that nearby Van Biesbroeck's star might have just such a large planet. Although VB 10 lies only...
Spokes Reappear on Saturns Rings
What causes the mysterious spokes in Saturn's rings? Visible in the above image as light ghostlike impressions, spokes were first discovered by the Voyager spacecraft that buzzed by Saturn in the early 1980s. Their existence was unexpected.
Spirit Encounters Soft Ground on Mars
Will Spirit be able to free itself from soft ground on Mars? The robotic Spirit rover currently rolling across Mars ran into unexpectedly soft ground last month while exploring the red planet. A worry...
A Solar Prominence from SOHO
How can gas float above the Sun? Twisted magnetic fields arching from the solar surface can trap ionized gas, suspending it in huge looping structures. These majestic plasma arches are seen as prominences above the solar limb.
A Beautiful Trifid
The beautiful Trifid Nebula is a colorful study in cosmic contrasts. Also known as M20, it lies about 5,000 light-years away toward the nebula rich constellation Sagittarius. A star forming region...
Close to the Great Bear (Ursa Major) and surrounded by the stars of the Hunting Dogs (Canes Venatici), this celestial wonder was discovered in 1781 by the metric French astronomer Pierre Mechain. Later, it was added to the catalog of his friend and colleague Charles Messier as M106.
Moon in the Mullica
Still waters mimic a predawn sky along the eastern horizon in this peaceful scene. The picture was recorded on May 22nd from the banks of the Mullica River, in a forested region known as the Pine Barrens of southern New Jersey on the US east coast.