Astronomy Picture Of the Day (APOD)Northern Green Flash
As seen from Frösön island in northern Sweden the Sun did set a day after the summer solstice. From that location below the arctic circle it settled slowly behind the northern horizon.
IC 2574: Coddington s Nebula
Grand spiral galaxies often seem to get all the glory, flaunting their young, bright, blue star clusters in beautiful, symmetric spiral arms. But small, irregular galaxies form stars too. In fact dwarf galaxy IC 2574 shows clear evidence of intense star forming activity in its telltale pinkish regions of glowing hydrogen gas.
WR 134 Ring Nebula
Made with narrow and broad band filters, this colorful cosmic snap shot covers a field of view about the size of the full Moon within the boundaries of the constellation Cygnus. It highlights the bright edge of a ring-like nebula traced by the glow of ionized hydrogen and oxygen gas.
Venus Transits the Midnight Sun
Today's solstice, the astronomical beginning of summer in the north, is at 23:09 UT when the Sun reaches the northernmost declination in its yearly trek through planet Earth's sky. While most...
NuSTAR XRay Telescope Launched
What's left after a star explodes? To help find out, NASA launched the Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) satellite into Earth orbit last week. NuSTAR's ability to focus hard X-rays emitted from...
Milky Way Above Easter Island
Why were the statues on Easter Island built? No one is sure. What is sure is that over 800 large stone statues exist there. The Easter Island statues, stand, on the average, over twice as tall as a person and have over 200 times as much mass.
Jupiters Rings Revealed
Why does Jupiter have rings? Jupiter's rings were discovered in 1979 by the passing Voyager 1 spacecraft, but their origin was a mystery. Data from the Galileo spacecraft that orbited Jupiter from 1995 to 2003 later confirmed that these rings were created by meteoroid impacts on small nearby moons.
APOD Turns 17
The first APOD appeared seventeen years ago today, on 1995 June 16. Although garnering only 14 page views on that day, we are proud to estimate that APOD has now served over one billion space-related images over the last 1.7 decades.
M65 and M66
Nearby and bright, spiral galaxies M65 (top) and M66 stand out in this engaging cosmic snapshot. The pair are just 35 million light-years distant and around 100,000 light-years across, about the size of our own spiral Milky Way.
M13: The Great Globular Cluster in Hercules
In 1716, English astronomer Edmond Halley noted, "This is but a little Patch, but it shews itself to the naked Eye, when the Sky is serene and the Moon absent." Of course, M13 is now modestly recognized as the Great Globular Cluster in Hercules, one of the brightest globular star clusters in the northern sky.