Thursday, June 9, 2011

Awe-inspiring images of the night sky

Aurora over Iceland
The World At Night, or TWAN, recently announced the winners of their 2011 International Photo Contest. A full collection of photos can be viewed at This photograph by Stephane Vetter won first place in the Beauty of the Night Sky category; it displays the northern lights and the Milky Way above the arctic landscape of Iceland.

Starry sky over the Alps

First prize in the Against The Lights category went to photographer Thomas Kurat for his photo “Alps at Night”. It shows the starry sky above a misty Alpine valley and village lights in Austria. The Against The Lights category highlights photos that show people how bad the problem of light pollution has become

The Milky Way over Iran

'Isfahan Milky Way' by Mehdi Momenzadeh won second price in the Against the Lights category. The photo shows the arc of the Milky Way rising above central Iran, and fades away in the northeast because of light pollution in the historic city of Isfahan.

Milky Way over Australia

“Galactic View from Planet Earth” by Alex Cherney from Australia is the second prize winner in the Beauty of the Night Sky category. The central bulge of the Milky Way, the brightest band of the galaxy, is captured in a starry night sky of Australia. 

Moontrails over Lisbon
'Lisbon Sky Lights' by Miguel Claro won third prize in the Against the Lights category. Stars and the crescent Moon trail toward the western horizon above the 25 April Bridge in Lisbon, Portugal. There are also many trails by airplanes to or from the Lisbon airport , including the bright light crossing the moontrail.

The Milky Way over Reunion
Photographer Luc Perrot won third prize in the Beauty of the Night Sky category with this photo. The band of the Milky Way arcs above Piton de la Fournaise, a very active volcano on Reunion Island in the Indian Ocean.
Night Sky over the Great Wall of China
The Great Wall at Night' by Xiaohua won 4th prize in the Beauty of the Night Sky category. The constellations Scorpio and Sagittarius stand above the Wu Saint Gate in the Great Wall of China.

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