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.

2013 January 4
See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download 
the highest resolution version available.

Sunrise at Tycho
Credit: NASA / GSFC / Arizona State Univ. / Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter

Explanation: Tycho crater's central peak complex casts a long, dark shadow near local sunrise in this spectacular lunarscape. The dramatic oblique view was recorded on June 10, 2011 by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. Shown in amazing detail, boulder strewn slopes and jagged shadows appear in the highest resolution version at 1.5 meters per pixel. The rugged complex is about 15 kilometers wide, formed in uplift by the giant impact that created the well-known ray crater 100 million years ago. The summit of its central peak reaches 2 kilometers above the Tycho crater floor.

Tomorrow's picture: Stereo Saturday

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Authors & editors: Robert Nemiroff (MTU) & Jerry Bonnell (UMCP)
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