Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos!Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe isfeatured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

2018 September 29

Explanation: For 55 consecutive nightsMediterranean skies were at least partly clear thissummer, from the 1st of July to the 24th of August 2018.An exposure from each night was incorporated in thiscomposited telephoto and telescopic image to followbrightplanet Saturn as itwandered through the generous evening skies.Through August, the outer planet’s seasonalapparent retrograde motionslowed and drifted to the right, framed by a starry background.That brought it near the line-of-sight to the central Milky Way,and the beautiful Lagoon (M8) and Trifid (20) nebulae.Of course Saturn’slargest moon Titan was also along for the ride.Swinging around the gas giant in a 16 day long orbit,Titan’s resulting wave-like motion is easier to spotwhen the almost-too-bright Saturn isdigitallyedited from the scene.

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Astronomy Picture of the Day

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