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.
2010 March 20
Explanation: Ghostly Zodiacal light, featured near the center of this remarkable panorama, is produced as sunlight is scattered by dust in the Solar System's ecliptic plane. In the weeks surrounding the March equinox (today at 1732 UT) Zodiacal light is more prominent after sunset in the northern hemisphere, and before sunrise in the south, when the ecliptic makes a steep angle with the horzion. In the picture, the narrow triangle of Zodiacal light extends above the western horizon and seems to end at the lovely Pleides star cluster. Arcing above the Pleides are stars and nebulae along the plane of our Milky Way Galaxy. Recorded on March 10 from Teide National Park on the island of Tenerife, the vista is composed of 4 separate pictures spaning over 180 degrees.
Authors & editors:
Jerry Bonnell (UMCP)
NASA Official: Phillip Newman Specific rights apply.
A service of: ASD at NASA / GSFC
& Michigan Tech. U.