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Jupiter's Clouds from New Horizons
Image Credit: +NASA, Johns Hopkins U. APL, SWRI
http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap160626.html

The New Horizons spacecraft took some stunning images of Jupiter on its way out to Pluto. Famous for its Great Red Spot, Jupiter is also known for its regular, equatorial cloud bands, visible through even modest sized telescopes. The featured image, horizontally compressed, was taken in 2007 near Jupiter's terminator and shows the Jovian giant's wide diversity of cloud patterns. On the far left are clouds closest to Jupiter's South Pole. Here turbulent whirlpools and swirls are seen in a dark region, dubbed a belt, that rings the planet. Even light colored regions, called zones, show tremendous structure, complete with complex wave patterns. The energy that drives these waves surely comes from below. New Horizons is the fastest space probe ever launched, has successfully complete its main flyby of Pluto in 2015, and is now heading further out and on track to flyby Kuiper belt object 2014 MU69 in 2019. In the near term, many space enthusiasts excitedly await Juno's arrival at Jupiter next Monday.
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jodie turner's profile photoJoshua Jackson's profile photoChris's profile photo
3 comments
Chris
 
Wow, has there been any image better then this as far as detail? Incredible, like liquid flows.
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Sagittarius Sunflowers
Image Credit & Copyright: Andrew Campbell
http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap160624.html

These three bright nebulae are often featured in telescopic tours of the constellation Sagittarius and the crowded starfields of the central Milky Way. In fact, 18th century cosmic tourist Charles Messier cataloged two of them; M8, the large nebula left of center, and colorful M20 near the bottom of the frame The third, NGC 6559, is right of M8, separated from the larger nebula by dark dust lanes. All three are stellar nurseries about five thousand light-years or so distant. The expansive M8, over a hundred light-years across, is also known as the Lagoon Nebula. M20's popular moniker is the Trifid. In the composite image, narrowband data records ionized hydrogen, oxygen, and sulfur atoms radiating at visible wavelengths. The mapping of colors and range of brightness used to compose this cosmic still life were inspired by Van Gogh's famous Sunflowers. Just right of the Trifid one of Messier's open star clusters, M21, is also included on the telescopic canvas.
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Andrew Campbell's profile photoCurtis King's profile photo
16 comments
 
+Andrew Campbell Word! Great job!
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NGC 6814: Grand Design Spiral Galaxy from Hubble
Image Credit: +European Space Agency, ESA/Hubble & +NASA; Acknowledgement: Judy Schmidt (Geckzilla)
http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap160621.html

In the center of this serene stellar swirl is likely a harrowing black-hole beast. The surrounding swirl sweeps around billions of stars which are highlighted by the brightest and bluest. The breadth and beauty of the display give the swirl the designation of a grand design spiral galaxy. The central beast shows evidence that it is a supermassive black hole about 10 million times the mass of our Sun. This ferocious creature devours stars and gas and is surrounded by a spinning moat of hot plasma that emits blasts of X-rays. The central violent activity gives it the designation of a Seyfert galaxy. Together, this beauty and beast are cataloged as NGC 6814 and have been appearing together toward the constellation of the Eagle (Aquila) for roughly the past billion years.
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Richard Payne's profile photoBabita Mohes's profile photo
10 comments
 
Awesome .It makes us think about life after death.The black hole.
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Galaxy and Planets Beyond Bristlecone Pines
Image Credit & Copyright: Brad Goldpaint (Goldpaint Photography)
http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap160619.html

What's older than these ancient trees? Nobody you know -- but almost everything in the background of this picture. The trees are impressively old -- each part of the Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest located in eastern California, USA. There, many of the oldest trees known are located, some dating as far back as about 5,000 years. Seemingly attached to tree branches, but actually much farther in the distance, are the bright orbs of Saturn (left) and Mars. These planets formed along with the Earth and the early Solar System much earlier -- about 4.5 billion years ago. Swooping down diagonally from the upper left is the oldest structure pictured: the central band of our Milky Way Galaxy -- dating back around 9 billion years. The featured image was built from several exposures all taken from the same location -- but only a few weeks ago.
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James Allensworth's profile photoJocelyn Davis's profile photoShana Begay's profile photo
11 comments
 
That's cool
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Comet PanSTARRS in the Southern Fish
Image Credit & Copyright: José J. Chambó
http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap160617.html

Now approaching our fair planet this Comet PanSTARRS (C/2013 X1) will come closest on June 21-22, a mere 5.3 light-minutes away. By then its appearance low in northern hemisphere predawn skies (high in the south), will be affected by the light of a nearly Full Moon, though. Still the comet's pretty green coma is about the apparent size of the Full Moon in this telescopic portrait, captured on June 12 from the southern hemisphere's Siding Spring Observatory. The deep image also follows a broad, whitish dust tail up and toward the left in the frame, sweeping away from the Sun and trailing behind the comet's orbit. Buffeted by the solar wind, a fainter, narrow ion tail extends horizontally toward the right. On the left edge, the brightest star is bluish Iota Picis Austrini. Shining at about fourth magnitude, that star is visible to the unaided eye in the constellation of the Southern Fish.
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kalynn rubia (remaster)'s profile photoKarin  Ettinger's profile photo
10 comments
 
Inner conStella shuns w naKenEye sweePin sunPhish from lowEr HeminiShere slightEd in a bleuHarVestEd cwestEnd moonsShine...
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Northern Lights above Lofoten
Image Credit & Copyright: Alex Conu
http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap160616.html

The Aurora Borealis or northern lights are familiar visitors to night skies above the village of Reine in the Lofoten Islands, Norway, planet Earth. In this scene, captured from a mountaintop camp site, the auroral curtains do seem to create an eerie tension with the coastal lights though. A modern perspective on the world at night, the stunning image was chosen as the over all winner in The World at Night's 2016 International Earth and Sky Photo Contest. Selections were made from over 900 entries highlighting the beauty of the night sky and its battle with light pollution.
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Karin  Ettinger's profile photoRonnie Williams's profile photoHenry Cyganiewicz's profile photo
18 comments
 
Hey there...
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Have them in circles
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Strawberry to Honey Moonrise
Image Credit & Copyright: Trevor Mahlmann
http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap160625.html

Near the horizon the Full Moon often seems to loom large, swollen in appearance by the famous Moon illusion. But timelapse images demonstrate that the Moon's apparent size doesn't really change as it climbs toward the zenith. Its color does, though. Recording a frame every 10 seconds, this image shows how dramatic that color change can be. The composite follows a solstice Full Moon climbing above a rugged horizon over northwestern Indiana. A shrinking line-of-sight through planet Earth's dense and dusty atmosphere shifted the moonlight from strawberry red through honey-colored and paler yellowish hues. That change seems appropriate for a northern June Full Moon also known as the Strawberry or Honey Moon.
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Michael Andersson's profile photoadolfo antonio fraile vasquez's profile photosergio Mmartinez's profile photo
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Sweet 
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Solstice Dawn and Full Moonset
Image Credit & Copyright: Laurie Hatch
http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap160623.html

A Full Moon sets as the Solstice Sun rises in this June 20 dawn skyscape. Captured from a nearby peak in central California, planet Earth, the scene looks across the summit of Mount Hamilton and Lick Observatory domes on a calendar date that marks an astronomical change of seasons and hemispherical extremes of daylight hours. Earth's shadow stretches toward the Santa Cruz Mountains on the western horizon. Just above the atmospheric grey shadowband is a more colorful anti-twilight arch, a band of reddened, backscattered sunlight also known as the Belt of Venus. The interplay of solstice dates and lunar months does make this solstice and Full Moon a rare match-up. The next June solstice and Full Moon will fall on the same calendar date on June 21, 2062.
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Mac Miller's profile photoAna Munoz's profile photoStephanise Rivers's profile photo
6 comments
 
Perfect
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Cirrus over Paris
Image Credit & Copyright: Bertrand Kulik
http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap160622.html

What's that over Paris? Cirrus. Typically, cirrus clouds appear white or gray when reflecting sunlight, can appear dark at sunset (or sunrise) against a better lit sky. Cirrus are among the highest types of clouds and are usually thin enough to see stars through. Cirrus clouds may form from moisture released above storm clouds and so may herald the arrival of a significant change in weather. Conversely, cirrus clouds have also been seen on Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Titan, Uranus, and Neptune. The featured image was taken two days ago from a window in District 15, Paris, France, Earth. The brightly lit object on the lower right is, of course, the Eiffel Tower.
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Trace Schuett's profile photoDamian Conner's profile photo
13 comments
 
Looks as if Paris is trying to become even more neutral, lol. Poor children
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Sunrise Solstice over Stonehenge
Image Credit & Copyright: Max Alexander, STFC, SPL
http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap160620.html

Today the Sun reaches its northernmost point in planet Earth's sky. Called a solstice, the date traditionally marks a change of seasons -- from spring to summer in Earth's Northern Hemisphere and from fall to winter in Earth's Southern Hemisphere. The featured image was taken during the week of the 2008 summer solstice at Stonehenge in United Kingdom, and captures a picturesque sunrise involving fog, trees, clouds, stones placed about 4,500 years ago, and a 4.5 billion year old large glowing orb. Even given the precession of the Earth's rotational axis over the millennia, the Sun continues to rise over Stonehenge in an astronomically significant way.
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Kathy Candelaria's profile photoStuie-not Stewie's profile photoKittyStixx Gamez's profile photo
21 comments
 
Oh @-@
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Sputnik Planum vs. Krun Macula
Image Credit: +NASA, Johns Hopkins Univ./APL, Southwest Research Institute
http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap160618.html

Pluto's pitted plains meet rugged highlands in this stunning view. On the left lies a southeastern extent of the bright region still informally known as Sputnik Planum. At right the edge of a dark region, informally Krun Macula, rises some 2.5 kilometers above the icy plains. Along the boundary, connected clusters of large pits form deep valleys, some over 40 kilometers long with shadowy floors. Nitrogen ice is likely responsible for the more reflective plains. The dark red color of the highlands is thought to be from complex compounds called tholins, a product of ultraviolet light induced chemical reactions with methane in Pluto's atmosphere. The enhanced color image includes portions of the highest and second highest resolution image data from the New Horizons July 2015 flyby of the distant world.
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N 
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GW151226: A Second Confirmed Source of Gravitational Radiation
Illustration Credit: LIGO, NSF
http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap160615.html

A new sky is becoming visible. When you look up, you see the sky as it appears in light -- electromagnetic radiation. But just over the past year, humanity has begun to see our once-familiar sky as it appears in a different type of radiation -- gravitational radiation. Today, the LIGO collaboration is reporting the detection of GW151226, the second confirmed flash of gravitational radiation after GW150914, the historic first detection registered three months earlier. As its name implies, GW151226 was recorded in late December of 2015. It was detected simultaneously by both LIGO facilities in Washington and Louisiana, USA. In the featured video, an animated plot demonstrates how the frequency of GW151226 changed with time during measurement by the Hanford, Washington detector. This GW-emitting system is best fit by two merging black holes with initial masses of about 14 and 8 solar masses at a redshift of roughly 0.09, meaning, if correct, that it took roughly 1.4 billion years for this radiation to reach us. Note that the brightness and frequency -- here mapped into sound -- of the gravitational radiation peaks during the last second of the black hole merger. As LIGO continues to operate, as its sensitivity continues to increase, and as other gravitational radiation detectors come online in the next few years, humanity's new view of the sky will surely change humanity's understanding of the universe.
2016 June 15
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Denise Hicks Young's profile photo
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I have always been very deeply amazed and in awe of our night sky. I believe we could have the best minds in the world work on all there is for us to discover and see and in a million years we would have touched only the tip of the enormous ice Berg that is our solar system, our universe, our Heavens. 
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Astronomy Picture of the Day (APoD)'s Collections
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Discover the cosmos!
Introduction
Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.