Sunday, March 25, 2018

FIREBALL AND MILKY WAY Taken by Kevin Palmer on March 24, 2018 @ Custer National Forest, Montana

This weekend I went camping in the dark skies of Southeast Montana. My goal was to capture the milky way for the first time this year. But my camera captured something else as well. Shortly after 4AM this fireball meteor fell through the sky. Ive taken tens of thousands of pictures of the night sky, and this is the brightest meteor Ive captured.

Saturday, March 24, 2018

PLANET MARS Taken by gianluca belgrado on March 20, 2018 @ Casarano

La congiunzione tra Marte e la nebulosa Trifida , fotografata allalba del 20 marzo . Levento è stato scambiato da un cosmologo per un esplosione stellare 🤣 . Mosaico di 2 scatti : per la foto dove è presene il pianeta ho sommato 5 pose da 1 minuto a 200 iso , la foto con la nebulosa è una vecchia ripresa del 2016 , fatta con una Canon 1100d , ed allineata con Photomerge

THE MOON WITH EARTHSHINE Taken by Peter Rosén on March 21, 2018 @ Central Stockholm, Sweden

The Moons dark side was beautifully lit upp by a strong Earthshine 2 days ago.
Photographed with Canon Eos5DMk4 and a Celestron C9.25 Edge HD.
I have composited a total of 16 images to handle the big contrast of the scenery.

Friday, March 23, 2018

SHARPLESS 249 AND THE JELLYFISH NEBULA Image Credit & Copyright: Albert Barr

Normally faint and elusive, the Jellyfish Nebula is caught in this alluring telescopic image. Centered in the scene it's anchored right and left by two bright stars, Mu and Eta Geminorum, at the foot of the celestial twin. The Jellyfish Nebula is the brighter arcing ridge of emission with dangling tentacles. In fact, the cosmic jellyfish is part of bubble-shaped supernova remnant IC 443, the expanding debris cloud from a massive star that exploded. Light from the explosion first reached planet Earth over 30,000 years ago. Like its cousin in astrophysical waters the Crab Nebula supernova remnant, the Jellyfish Nebula is known to harbor a neutron star, the remnant of the collapsed stellar core. An emission nebula cataloged as Sharpless 249 fills the field at the upper left. The Jellyfish Nebula is about 5,000 light-years away. At that distance, this image would be about 300 light-years across.

AURORA Taken by Steve Cullen on March 22, 2018 @ Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada

Cosmic Virga 🌧️

What do you do after spending 6+ hours outside all night doing aurora photography in -25°F temperatures? You take a selfie, of course. For those of you not familiar with virga it is the meteorological term for an observable streak of precipitation falling from a cloud that evaporates or sublimates before reaching the ground. The aurora in this image looks very similar to what you might see in the southwestern U.S. skies on a summer afternoon. Except this definitely is not the southwest. Oh, and, virga doesnt come in green and violet colors either!

Some other things I figured out while creating this photograph. 1. I didnt realize that at this latitude the Andromeda Galaxy never sets. It is the glowing slanted oval just to the left of center in my photograph. 2. This is the Milky Way season for folks this far north. By late April the sky will be bright enough all night long to wash out the Milky Way. 3. You cant get those big arching Milky Way shots here in Yellowknife. Youve seen those images where the galactic core is blazing away above the horizon with the stars in the disc of the galaxy arching across the sky. What you see in my photograph is really about as arching as it is going to get. 4. At -25°F the luminance noise in photographs is pretty darn low.

As for the photograph, this isnt a normal one-shot and done selfie. It is a special technique pioneered by my Facebook friend Michael Goh that I like to use on occassion. It involves taking a single image of yours truly holding a light. Then, I take a panoramic of the entire foreground scene with the light placed on a light stand or tripod. Then, I take another panoramic of the entire scene, exposing especially for the sky. The individual images for the foreground and sky and merged to create panoramas and then those are composited together, along with the single image of me, to make the final photograph. It is a lot more involved than pulling out your iPhone and snapping an image. But, it really is the best way to shoot this type of photograph under low-light conditions and I think the results are pretty awesome.

Thursday, March 22, 2018


NGC 253: DUSTY ISLAND UNIVERSE Image Credit & Copyright: Stefano Cancelli, Paul Mortfield

Shiny NGC 253 is one of the brightest spiral galaxies visible, and also one of the dustiest. Some call it the Silver Dollar Galaxy for its appearance in small telescopes, or just the Sculptor Galaxy for its location within the boundaries of the southern constellation Sculptor. Discovered in 1783 by mathematician and astronomer Caroline Herschel, the dusty island universe lies a mere 10 million light-years away. About 70 thousand light-years across, NGC 253 is the largest member of the Sculptor Group of Galaxies, the nearest to our own Local Group of Galaxies. In addition to its spiral dust lanes, tendrils of dust seem to be rising from a galactic disk laced with young star clusters and star forming regions in this sharp color image. The high dust content accompanies frantic star formation, earning NGC 253 the designation of a starburst galaxy. NGC 253 is also known to be a strong source of high-energy x-rays and gamma rays, likely due to massive black holes near the galaxy's center. Take a trip through extragalactic space in this short video flyby of NGC 253.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018


.. divina foto !.. gracias Yani ..

SPRING MILKY WAY Taken by Ruslan Merzlyakov on March 18, 2018 @ Feggesund, Nykøbing Mors, Denmark

The Pearl of the Limfjord.
Winters last kiss just before the spring turned whole Denmark into the frozen paradise.
The sky is tracked and stacked mosaic of 6 frames (each stacked of 6 images) and the foregound is taken few minutes after, together with the first sunlight.
Canon EOS 6D astro mod + Samyang 24mm f/1.4 + iOptron skytracker

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On March 15, 2018, the Zeiss Planetarium in Vienna celebrated its reopening after a short interruption. In February, ZEISS installed new VELVET video projectors for complete projection onto the 630 m² planetarium dome. The VELVET projectors, developed and manufactured by ZEISS in Jena, are distinguished by the best contrast worldwide. The absolutely black background ensures that visitors can experience astronomical representations with a spatial depth that enables them to literally immerse themselves in the astronomical worlds.
Now it is possible to connect the existing star projector with its unsurpassed brilliant night sky with the digital video projection. This combination of analog and digital projection, known as a hybrid planetarium, allows unique representations that help visitors to understand and comprehend the processes in the sky more easily. After a record number of visitors in 2017, the planetarium is now optimally equipped for even more visitors.

LYING CASSIOPEIA ON THE SEA Taken by Yasushi Aoshima on March 14, 2018 @ Ishikawa, JAPAN

Data: Samyang35mmF1.4(at F2), Kenko PRO SOFTON-A(W), CanonEOS5Dmk2, 6400 ISO, 19x30sec stacked(17:09-20 UTC)

WHIRLPOOL GALAXY Taken by Patrick Bosschaerts on March 20, 2018 @ Antwerp / Belgium

C11XLT f6.3 on AVX mount. ZWO1600MC cooled with IDAS LPS filter. 98 x 60 sec. unguided. 20 darks and 20 flats. Nebulosity and Photoshop.
Seeing: good.

CAMERA ORION Image Credit & Copyright: Derrick Lim

Do you recognize this constellation? Although it is one of the most recognizable star groupings on the sky, Orion's icons don't look quite as colorful to the eye as they do to a camera. In this 20-image digitally-composed mosaic, cool red giant Betelgeuse takes on a strong orange tint as the brightest star at the upper left. Orion's hot blue stars are numerous, with supergiant Rigel balancing Betelgeuse at the lower right, and Bellatrix at the upper right Lined up in Orion's belt are three stars all about 1,500 light-years away, born from the constellation's well-studied interstellar clouds. Below Orion's belt a reddish and fuzzy patch that might also look familiar -- the stellar nursery known as Orion's Nebula. Finally, just barely visible to the unaided eye but quite striking here by camera is Barnard's Loop -- a huge gaseous emission nebula surrounding Orion's Belt and Nebula discovered over 100 years ago by the pioneering Orion photographer E. E. Barnard.




Tuesday, March 20, 2018

CHICAGOHENGE: EQUINOX IN AN ALIGNED CITY Image Credit & Copyright: Anthony Artese

Sometimes, in a way, Chicago is like a modern Stonehenge. The way is east to west, and the time is today. Today, and every equinox, the Sun will set exactly to the west, everywhere on Earth. Therefore, today in Chicago, the Sun will set directly down the long equatorially-aligned grid of streets and buildings, an event dubbed #chicagohenge. Featured here is a Chicago Henge picture taken during the last equinox in mid-September of 2017 looking along part of Upper Wacker Drive. Many cities, though, have streets or other features that are well-aligned to Earth's spin axis. Therefore, quite possibly, your favorite street may also run east - west. Tonight at sunset, with a quick glance, you can actually find out.

Monday, March 19, 2018

SUBAURORALARC (STEVE) OVER THE ISLE OF LEWIS, SCOTLAND Taken by Giuseppe Petricca on March 18, 2018 @ Isle of Lewis, Eilean Siar, Scotland

A meeting with STEVE!

Last night, for the very first time for me, the phenomenon known as STEVE (Strong Thermal Emission Velocity Enhancement) appeared on the western skies, dancing for about half an hour in front of my eyes, on the left of the main aurora borealis arch.

An ever-changing tornado, with violet tones, always in movement, always with different shapes! There is not a picture when the details are the same compared to the previous or the next one! Another wonder of Nature!

Manfrotto MK055XPRO3-3W - Canon EOS 700D - Samyang 14mm f2.8

AURORA BOREALIS Taken by Ruslan Merzlyakov on March 18, 2018 @ Mårup (Hjørring), Denmark

Yesterdays unexpected Northern Lights storm was visible with the naked eye! Finally, lady Aurora visited Denmark since the beginning of November!
Taken with Canon EOS 6Da + Samyang 24mm f/1.4
Panorama of 15 shots @ 13 seconds, f/2, ISO 2500

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MERCURY, VENUS, AND MOON Taken by David Blanchard on March 18, 2018 @ Flagstaff, AZ

Moon, Venus, and Mercury in the evening sky with reflections in Mormon Lake.

A longer exposure a few minutes later revealed the Zodiacal Light.

CONJONCTION OF MERCURY, VENUS AND THE OLD MOON IN THE NEW MOONS ARMS Taken by David Joly on March 18, 2018 @ Saint-Didace, Québec, Canada

Venus was very bright in this perfect sky after sunset, side by side with Mercury and a crescent moon.

Details: Pentax K-01 with Pentax FA 77 mm lens, F/8, 3s exposure.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

SUNSET CONJUNCTION Taken by Jean-Paul Landry on March 18, 2018 @ Willington, CT

Below freezing with a clear sky.
Beautiful colors. Canon 80D

YOUNG MOON WITH VENUS AND MERCURY Taken by Piotr Wieczorek on March 18, 2018 @ Piwnice, near Toruń

Conjunctions of planets with the young 1% moon.
UMK Piwnice
Nikon 70-200

COMET C/2016 R2 PANSTARRS Taken by José J. Chambó on March 6, 2018 @ New Mexico, USA

Comet C/2016 R2 (PANSTARRS) photographed on March 6, 2018 seems less active in spite of be still to two months of perihelion, although keeps its appearance with a small coma from which departs a blue narrow ionic tail that is opening in distance.

Telescope Planewave 17 CDK f/4,5 & Camera FLI PL6303E

COMET PANSTARRS (C/2016 R2) NEAR CALIFORNIA NEBULA Taken by Yasushi Aoshima on March 14, 2018 @ Ishikawa, JAPAN

Data: EF300mmF2.8L USM, CanonEOS6D, 12800 ISO, 118x60sec stacked (10:46-12:50 UT), FOV: 4.7 x 7°, North: upper-left


Saturday, March 17, 2018


THE CRAB FROM SPACE Image Credit: NASA - X-ray: CXC, Optical: STSCI, Infrared: JPL-Caltech

 The Crab Nebula is cataloged as M1, the first object on Charles Messier's famous list of things which are not comets. In fact, the Crab is now known to be a supernova remnant, expanding debris from the death explosion of a massive star. This intriguing false-color image combines data from space-based observatories, Chandra, Hubble, and Spitzer, to explore the debris cloud in X-rays (blue-white), optical (purple), and infrared (pink) light. One of the most exotic objects known to modern astronomers, the Crab Pulsar, a neutron star spinning 30 times a second, is the bright spot near picture center. Like a cosmic dynamo, this collapsed remnant of the stellar core powers the Crab's emission across the electromagnetic spectrum. Spanning about 12 light-years, the Crab Nebula is 6,500 light-years away in the constellation Taurus.


This image captures a close-up view of a storm with bright cloud tops in the northern hemisphere of Jupiter.                         

NASA’s Juno spacecraft took this color-enhanced image on Feb. 7 at 5:38 a.m. PST (8:38 a.m. EST) during its 11th close flyby of the gas giant planet. At the time, the spacecraft was 7,578 miles (12,195 kilometers) from the tops of Jupiter’s clouds at 49.2 degrees north latitude.

Citizen scientist Matt Brealey processed the image using data from the JunoCam imager. Citizen scientist Gustavo B C then adjusted colors and embossed Matt Brealey's processing of this storm.

JunoCam's raw images are available for the public to peruse and process into image products at:         

More information about Juno is at: and

Image credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS/Matt Brealey/Gustavo B C


Friday, March 16, 2018

THE SEAGULL AND THE DUCK Image Credit & Copyright: Raul Villaverde Fraile

Seen as a seagull and a duck, these nebulae are not the only cosmic clouds to evoke images of flight. But both are winging their way across this broad celestial landscape, spanning almost 7 degrees across planet Earth's night sky toward the constellation Canis Major. The expansive Seagull (top center) is itself composed of two major cataloged emission nebulae. Brighter NGC 2327 forms the head with the more diffuse IC 2177 as the wings and body. Impressively, the Seagull's wingspan would correspond to about 250 light-years at the nebula's estimated distance of 3,800 light-years. At the lower right, the Duck appears much more compact and would span only about 50 light-years given its 15,000 light-year distance estimate. Blown by energetic winds from an extremely massive, hot star near its center, the Duck nebula is cataloged as NGC 2359. Of course, the Duck's thick body and winged appendages also lend it the slightly more dramatic popular moniker, Thor's Helmet.


.. 5am ..

.. algunos MESSIERS en SAGITARIO ..

.. junto a MARTE & SATURNO )


COMET C/2016 R2 PANSTARRS + CALIFORNIANEBULA Taken by Norbert Mrozek on March 14, 2018 @ Sauerland Germany

Takahashi Epsilon 130D, Canon 6Da
60 min. Iso 1600