Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)A Presidential Panorama of Mars
Scroll right to unfold the latest panorama of the surface of Mars. For best viewing, click and hold on the right arrow icon at the bottom of your browser window. This image, released yesterday and dubbed a "presidential panorama" by the Mars Pathfinder team, shows in colorful detail the surroundings of the Sagan Memorial Station.
In the Center of the Keyhole Nebula
Stars, like people, do not always go gentle into that good night. The above Keyhole Nebula results from dying star Eta Carinae's violently casting off dust and gas during its final centuries. Eta Carinae is many times more massive than our own Sun, and should eventually undergo a tremendous supernova explosion.
At the Edge of the Helix
While exploring the inner edge of the Helix Nebula with the Hubble Space Telescope's Wide Field Planetary Camera 2, astronomers were able to produce this striking image - rich in details of an exotic environment.
The Small Cloud of Magellan
The southern sky contains wonders almost unknown in the north. These wonders include the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds: small irregular galaxies orbiting our own larger Milky Way spiral galaxy. The Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC), pictured here, is about 250,000 light years away.
Blue Stars and Red Pillars
Bright blue stars are still forming in the red pillars of the Eagle Nebula. Made famous by a picture from the Hubble Space Telescope in 1995, the Eagle Nebula shows the dramatic process of star formation. To the upper right of the nebula in the above picture lies the heart of the open cluster M16.
A Message from Earth
What are these Earthlings trying to tell us? The above message was broadcast from Earth towards the globular star cluster M13 in 1974. During the dedication of the Arecibo Observatory - still the largest radio telescope in the world - a string of 1's and 0's representing the above diagram was sent.
Mars: Yogi And Friends in 3D
A ramp from the Pathfinder lander, the Sojourner robot rover, airbags, a couch, Barnacle Bill, and Yogi Rock appear together in this 3D stereo view of the surface of Mars. Barnacle Bill is the rock just left of the solar-paneled Sojourner and Yogi is the big friendly-looking boulder at the right.
Vega is a bright blue star 25 light years away. Vega is the brightest star in the Summer Triangle, a group of stars easily visible summer evenings in the northern hemisphere. The name Vega...
Mars: Twin Peaks In Stereo
Get out your red/blue glasses and gaze across the surface of Mars in stereo. You are looking south of west across an ancient flood channel, Ares Vallis, landing site of the Mars Pathfinder.
Vela Supernova Remnant in Optical
About 11,000 years ago a star in the constellation of Vela exploded. This bright supernova may have been visible to the first human farmers. Today the Vela supernova remnant marks the position of a relatively close and recent explosion in our Galaxy. A roughly spherical, expanding shock wave is visible in X-rays.