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.

2001 January 29
See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download 
 the highest resolution version available.

An Airplane in Front of the Sun
Credit & Copyright: Thierry Legault

Explanation: Sometimes, good planes come to those who wait. Experienced solar photographer Thierry Lagault had noticed planes crossing in front of the Sun from his home in suburban Paris. He then got the idea for the above photograph, but had to wait through many near misses. About two weeks ago, he got his wish: a jet crossed directly in front of the Sun when his solar imaging equipment was set up. The resulting image, shown above, was taken in a specific color of red light called Hydrogen-Alpha, and the picture's contrast has been digitally enhanced. Dark prominences can be seen lacing the Sun's busy surface. The airplane is an MD-11.

Tomorrow's picture: Orion Colors

< | Archive | Index | Search | Calendar | Glossary | Education | About APOD | >

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.