Astronomy Picture of the Day

zdjęcie The Unexpected Trajectory of Interstellar Asteroid 'Oumuamua

The Unexpected Trajectory of Interstellar Asteroid 'Oumuamua

Why is 'Oumuamua differing from its expected trajectory? Last year, 1I/2017 U1 'Oumuamua became the first known asteroid from interstellar space to pass through our Solar System. Just over a year ago, this tumbling interstellar rock even passed ...

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zdjęcie Gibbous Moon beyond Swedish Mountain

Gibbous Moon beyond Swedish Mountain

This is a gibbous Moon. More Earthlings are familiar with a full moon, when the entire face of Luna is lit by the Sun, and a crescent moon, when only a sliver of the Moon's face is lit. When more than half of the Moon is illuminated, though, but ...

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zdjęcie Creature Aurora Over Norway

Creature Aurora Over Norway

It was Halloween and the sky looked like a creature. Exactly which creature, the astrophotographer was unsure but (possibly you can suggest one). Exactly what caused this eerie apparition in 2013 was sure: one of the best auroral displays in ...

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zdjęcie The Tarantula Nebula

The Tarantula Nebula

The Tarantula Nebula, also known as 30 Doradus, is more than a thousand light-years in diameter, a giant star forming region within nearby satellite galaxy the Large Magellanic Cloud. About 180 thousand light-years away, it's the largest, most ...

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zdjęcie The Hill, The Moon, and Saturn

The Hill, The Moon, and Saturn

Last Sunday when the Moon was young its sunlit crescent hung low near the western horizon at sunset. With strong earthshine it was joined by Saturn shining in the early evening sky for a beautiful conjunction visible to skygazers around our fair ...

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zdjęcie Comet 46P/Wirtanen

Comet 46P/Wirtanen

Periodic Comet 46P/Wirtanen is now the brightest comet in the night sky, but too faint to be seen by eye. From dark sky sites it could just become naked-eye visible though, as it's 5.4 year long looping orbit takes it closest to Earth and the Sun ...

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zdjęcie The Cave Nebula in Hydrogen, Oxygen, and Sulfur

The Cave Nebula in Hydrogen, Oxygen, and Sulfur

What's inside this cosmic cave? A stellar nursery 10 light-years deep. The featured skyscape is dominated by dusty Sh2-155, the Cave Nebula. In the telescopic image, data taken through a narrowband filters tracks the nebular glow of hydrogen, ...

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zdjęcie Rotating Asteroid Bennu from OSIRIS-REx

Rotating Asteroid Bennu from OSIRIS-REx

Could this close-by asteroid ever hit the Earth? Eventually yes -- but probably not for a very long time, even though the asteroid is expected to pass inside the orbit of the Moon next century. However, to better understand the nature and orbit ...

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zdjęcie The Lagoon Nebula is Stars, Gas, and Dust

The Lagoon Nebula is Stars, Gas, and Dust

The majestic Lagoon Nebula is filled with hot gas and the home for many young stars. Spanning 100 light years across while lying only about 5000 light years distant, the Lagoon Nebula is so big and bright that it can be seen without a telescope ...

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zdjęcie Astronaut Exploring: An Apollo 15 Panorama

Astronaut Exploring: An Apollo 15 Panorama

What would it be like to explore the Moon? NASA's Apollo missions gave humans just this chance in the late 1960s and early 1970s. In particular, the Apollo 15 mission was dedicated to better understanding the surface of the Moon by exploring ...

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