Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

2018 January 27
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Laguna Starry Sky
Image Credit & Copyright: Kerry-Ann Lecky Hepburn (Weather and Sky Photography)

Explanation: Staring toward the heavens, one of the many lagunas in the Atacama Desert salt flat calmly reflects a starry night sky near San Pedro de Atacama, Chile, planet Earth. Cosmic rifts of dust, star clouds, and nebulae of the central Milky Way galaxy are rising in the east, beyond a volcanic horizon. Caught in the six frame panorama serenely recorded in the early morning hours of January 15, planets Jupiter and Mars are close. Near the ecliptic, the bright planets are immersed in the Solar System's visible band of Zodiacal light extending up and left from the galactic center. Above the horizon to the south (right) are the Large and Small clouds of Magellan, satellite galaxies of the Milky Way.

Tomorrow's picture: full moon fading

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