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.

2012 May 28
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Contemplating the Sun
Image Credit & Copyright: Steven Gilbert

Explanation: Have you contemplated your home star recently? Pictured above, a Sun partially eclipsed on the top left by the Moon is also seen eclipsed by earthlings contemplating the eclipse below. The above menagerie of silhouettes was taken from the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area near Page, Arizona, USA, where park rangers and astronomers expounded on the unusual event to interested gatherers. Also faintly visible on the Sun's disk, just to the lower right of the dark Moon's disk, is a group of sunspots. Although exciting, some consider this event a warm-up act for next week's chance to comtemplate the Sun -- a much more rare partial eclipse by the planet Venus.

Astronomy Seminar of the Week: The 2012 Transit of Venus
Tomorrow's picture: white sentinels

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