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.

2004 December 5
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Kemble's Cascade
Credit and Copyright: Walter MacDonald

Explanation: A picturesque chain of unrelated stars is visible with strong binoculars towards the constellation of Camelopardalis. Known as Kemble's Cascade, the asterism contains about 20 stars nearly in a row stretching over five times the width of a full moon. Made popular by astronomy enthusiast Lucian Kemble (1922-1999), these stars appear as a string only from our direction in the Milky Way Galaxy. The above photograph of Kemble's Cascade was made with a small telescope in New Mexico, USA. The bright object near the bottom left is the relatively compact open cluster of stars known as NGC 1502.

Tomorrow's picture: sun strings

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