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.

2000 November 8
See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download 
 the highest resolution version available.
October Skylights
Credit & Copyright: Wade Clark Jr.

Explanation: With brilliant Venus above the western horizon at sunset and Jupiter and Saturn high in the east by early evening, November's night sky is filled with bright planets. October's sky featured bright planets as well and, triggered by the active Sun, some lovely auroral displays. This colorful aurora was recorded by astrophotographer Wade Clark in skies above Hamilton, Washington, USA on the night of October 4th. Through the shimmering northern lights Jupiter and Saturn are easy to spot flanking the V-shaped head of Taurus the Bull. Of course, just above lies the lovely Pleiades star cluster. Solar activity will also produce auroral shows in November, particularly at high northern and southern latitudes. Plus, November skygazers can certainly anticipate a celestial performance on the evening of the 17th/18th -- the moonlit Leonid meteor shower.

Tomorrow's picture: XRB

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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.