2020 May 16
The Dark River to Antares
Composite Image Credit & Copyright: Paul Schmit
Explanation: A dark river seems to flow through this sky from the horizon toward colorful clouds near red giant star Antares. Murky looking, the dark river is a dusty nebula obscuring background starlight near the central Milky Way, although the dark dust nebula contains mostly hydrogen molecular gas. Dust scattering starlight around Antares, alpha star of Scorpius, creates the unusual yellow-hued reflection nebula. Above it, bright blue double star Rho Ophiuchi is embedded in more typical dusty bluish reflection nebulae, with red emission nebulae also scattered through the interstellar space. Globular star cluster M4 looks almost like a bright star just above and right of Antares, though it lies far behind the colorful clouds, at a distance of some 7,000 light-years. The dark river itself is about 500 light years away. To create the startling night sky view, all background and foreground exposures were made back to back with the same camera and telephoto lens on the same night from the same location. In combination they produce a stunning image that reveals a range of brightness and color that your eye can’t quite perceive. Recorded in the early hours of January 31, the composite also captures Mars still near the eastern horizon and rising to join rival Antares on the celestial stage. Bright Mars and its watery reflection are left of a lonely tree in the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge, New Mexico, planet Earth.
Tomorrow’s picture: up the spout
说明：一道暗河看似源自这片天空的地平线附近，流向红巨星心宿二附近的七彩星云。这条浑浊的暗河，其实是遮住了银河盘面星光的尘埃，而这些暗星云的主要成分是氢分子气体。影像中，环拱着天蝎座最明亮的心宿二之尘埃，散射星光产生了罕见的泛黄反射星云。位在心宿二上方的泛蓝明亮双星心宿增四，周遭则环拱着较典型的泛蓝反射星云。此外，这片星际空间还散布着许多泛红的发射星云。贴在心宿二右上方、看来像一颗亮星的球状星团M4，位在这些色彩缤纷的星云后方约7,000光年远之处，而这道暗河的距离则在500光年左右。为制作出这幅令人赞叹的夜空影像，所有的背景和前景照片，都是在同一晚，由配备长焦镜头的相同相机在同一地点所拍摄。它们合成出的影像 ，所拥有的亮度和色泽变化，超出人类肉眼所能感测。摄于1月31日夜初的这幅组合影像，同时也记录了仍在东方地平线附近，缓缓升起的火星。在这片星空中，它看似要前去与神话中的敌人心宿二见面。明亮和火星和它在水面的倒影，位在前景这颗位在地球．新墨西哥州．Bosque del Apache国家野生动物保护区内的孤树之左侧。
明日的图片：up the spout