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.

2009 July 13
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Erupting Volcano Anak Krakatau
Credit & Copyright: Marco Fulle (Stromboli Online)

Explanation: A volcano on Krakatoa is still erupting. Perhaps most famous for the powerfully explosive eruption in 1883 that killed tens of thousands of people, ash from a violent eruption might also have temporarily altered Earth's climate as long as 1500 years ago. In 1927, eruptions caused smaller Anak Krakatau to rise from the sea, and the emerging volcanic island continues to grow at an average rate of 2 cm per day. The latest eruption of Anak Krakatau started in 2008 April and continues today. In this picture, Anak Krakatau is seen erupting from Rakata, the main island of the Krakatoai group. High above, stars including the Big Dipper are clearly apparent.

Tomorrow's picture: pixels in space

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