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.

2002 March 10
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A Southern Sky View
Credit & Copyright: Gordon Garradd

Explanation: On 1996 March 22, a Galaxy and a comet shared the southern sky. They were captured together, from horizon to horizon, in the night sky above Loomberah, New South Wales, Australia by astronomer Gordon Garradd. Garradd used a home made all-sky camera with a fisheye lens, resulting in a circular 200 degree field of view. This gorgeous sky view was dominated by the luminous band of our Milky Way Galaxy cut by dramatic, dark interstellar dust clouds. Along with the bright stars of our Galaxy, the Large Magellanic Cloud is visible at the lower left. That night sky was also graced by the long, lovely, bluish tail of Comet Hyakutake, which can be seen toward the top of the image, near the bright star Arcturus. Bright city lights from nearby Tamworth glow along the Northwestern horizon.

Tomorrow's picture: Modern Dinosaur

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Authors & editors: Robert Nemiroff (MTU) & Jerry Bonnell (USRA)
NASA Technical Rep.: Jay Norris. Specific rights apply.
A service of: LHEA at NASA/ GSFC
& Michigan Tech. U.