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APOD: M78: Stardust and Starlight (2013 Oct 10) Image Credit & Copyright: Tony Hallas http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap131010.html Explanation: Interstellar dust clouds and bright nebulae abound in the fertile constellation of Orion. One of the brightest, M78, is just left of center in this colorful telescopic view, covering an area north of Orion's belt. At a distance of about 1,500 light-years, the bluish nebula itself is about 5 light-years across. Its blue tint is due to dust preferentially reflecting the blue light of hot, young stars in the region. Dark dust lanes and other nebulae can easily be traced through this gorgeous skyscape. The scene also includes the remarkable McNeil's Nebula -- a newly recognized nebula associated with the formation of a sun-like star, and the telltale reddish glow of many Herbig- Haro objects, energetic jets from stars in the process of formation. http://astrophoto.com/M78.htm Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=131010 #APOD

Colliding galaxies, Martian moons and the black hole in the Milky Way's heart – in pictures

Photograph: Chandra X-ray Observatory/NASA<p>Observations with NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory have revealed a massive cloud of multimillion-degree gas in a galaxy about 60 million light years from Earth. The hot gas cloud is likely caused by a collision between a dwarf galaxy and a much larger …

WIRED Space Photo of the Day 2013

PhysicsWhy Do You Feel Lighter at the Top of a Ferris Wheel?<p>Author: Rhett AllainRhett Allain<p>EcologyHow Plastic Straws Slip Through the Cracks of …

Our Milky Way galaxy wobbles

Our home galaxy, the Milky Way, makes small wobbling movements. Possible causes include the passage of a smaller galaxy through our own.<p>It is common …

Universe

Mirach is guide star to three galaxies

The orange-colored star Mirach in the constellation Andromeda acts as your guide star to 3 different galaxies.<p>The star Mirach (Beta Andromedae) in …

7 Gorgeous Space Images From The NASA Archive

Never-before-published pictures of our universe<p>Space fans, try to contain your excitement: NASA has just released some never-before-published images from its archive. These portraits of our universe come from the Chandra X-ray Observatory, which launch in 199. NASA explains:<p>NASA's Chandra X-ray …

Scientists Estimate 20 Billion Earth-Like Planets In Our Galaxy

A new study suggests there could be far more Earth-like planets orbiting distant stars than once thought, some of which might even harbor life.<p>A team of astronomers from the University of California, Berkeley and the University of Hawaii at Manoa, Honolulu, used the Kepler space telescope to survey …

Space probe Gaia searches for galaxy's dark energy

European scientists are preparing to launch a probe that will transform our understanding of our galaxy. The spacecraft, called Gaia, will carry the world's biggest, most accurate camera which it will use to pinpoint more than a billion stars with unprecedented precision and create a 3D map of the …

How Did Mars Die? NASA's Newest Spacecraft Aims to Find Out

MAVEN will try to decipher the history of Mars' atmosphere and how it was lost.<p>CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — In their infancy, maybe even into their adolescence, Earth and Mars were more alike than they were different. Each rocky world was pockmarked by volcanoes, and waterways carved both surfaces. …

Space

Proxima, our sun’s nearest neighbor

Proxima Centauri, one of three stars in the Alpha Centauri system, is our sun’s nearest known neighbor among the stars. It’s 4.22 light-years …

Fiery drama of star birth and death in Large Magellanic Cloud

Places where hot new stars are born and die – and sculpt their surroundings into odd shapes – in the dwarf galaxy orbiting our own Milky Way.<p>The …

Cosmology

Distant Stars, Saturn's Bars, and a Trip to Mars

A supernova's ghost, Saturn's unearthly rings, and the next Mars mission's send-off round out the week's best space pictures.

More evidence there’s an ocean on Europa primed for life

An ocean below the surface of Jupiter’s moon Europa may have deep currents and circulation patterns with heat and energy transfers that are capable …

Hubble Spots Water Plumes on Europa

The geysers could make it easier to search for life under the ice.<p><b>Geysers spew water from the tiger-striped south pole of Jupiter's ice-covered moon Europa, suggest observations from NASA's Hubble space telescope.</b><p><b>If the existence of the plumes can be confirmed, they will perhaps allow future space</b> …

The Most Amazing Images NASA Took of Earth From Space This Year

PhysicsWhy Do You Feel Lighter at the Top of a Ferris Wheel?<p>Author: Rhett AllainRhett Allain<p>EcologyHow Plastic Straws Slip Through the Cracks of …

When stars sneeze

If you could watch over thousands of years, you’d find that the star is having a sneezing fit. It’s firing off rapid releases of super-hot, …

8 Ways Jellyfish Are Awesome And Terrifying

Awesomely terrifying, or terrifyingly awesome?<p>The jellyfish is a fascinating creature. Floating lazily along in the ocean current resembling plastic bags, the gelatinous zooplankton seem to do little more than add a colorful glow to our aquariums and occasionally give swimmers a reason to urinate …

APOD: The Hydrogen Clouds of M33 (2013 Dec 26) Image Credit & Copyright: Adam Block, Mt. Lemmon SkyCenter, U. Arizona http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap131226.html Explanation: Gorgeous spiral galaxy M33 seems to have more than its fair share of glowing hydrogen gas. A prominent member of the local group of galaxies, M33 is also known as the Triangulum Galaxy and lies about 3 million light-years distant. Its inner 30,000 light-years are shown in this telescopic galaxy portrait that enhances the reddish ionized hydrogen clouds or HII regions. Sprawling along loose spiral arms that wind toward the core, M33's giant HII regions are some of the largest known stellar nurseries, sites of the formation of short-lived but very massive stars. Intense ultraviolet radiation from the luminous, massive stars ionizes the surrounding hydrogen gas and ultimately produces the characteristic red glow. To enhance this image, broadband data was used to produce a color view of the galaxy and combined with narrowband data recorded through a hydrogen-alpha filter, transmitting the light of the strongest hydrogen emission line. To see the monochromatic narrowband data alone, move your cursor over the image, or take this video tour of the hydrogen clouds of M33. http://www.caelumobservatory.com/ http://skycenter.arizona.edu/ http://www.as.arizona.edu/ Starship Asterisk* • APOD Discussion Page http://asterisk.apod.com/discuss_apod.php?date=131226 #APOD

Anna

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Romantic Collection by Romee Brunelli

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Coffee With Santa, 1958 - a picture from the past

27 Amazing Macro Snowflake Images Shot with a DIY Camera Set Up

Photography

10 photo highlights of the day

The Guardian's picture editors bring you a selection of top photographs from around the world

10 Sources of Inspiration For Your Photography

Every one of us needs to be inspired to shoot photos at some time in our photographic journeys. Sometimes inspiration comes naturally while on other …

Gone to the Beach

Gone to the Beach - dPS will be in limited mode over the holidays but will be back full steam January 3rd, 2014

Digital Photography

Winter Wedding Photography Tips

When I saw the headlights of a wedding car shining through the thick winter fog the other day, I knew the appointed photographer for that wedding …