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Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2014 - in pictures

The Horsehead Nebula by Bill Snyder via theguardian: The Horsehead Nebula is one of the most photographed objects in the night sky, but this image draws the eye down to the creased and folded landscape of gas and dust at its base rather than focusing solely on the silhouette of the horse head. #Photography #Astronomy #Horse_Head_Nebula

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Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2012 nominations – in pictures

The Elephant's Trunk in the constellation of Cepheus. Photograph: Bill Snyder/Royal Observatory

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In an estimated 5billion years time, our own sun will turn into a nebula similar to the Dumbbell Nebula Photo: Bill Snyder

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NGC1491 is an emission nebula in Perseus. It is about 10,000 light years away. Veteran astrophotographer Bill Snyder shot this photo in early 2013 from Heavens Mirror Observatory SRO in California%u2019s Sierra Nevada Mountains. He used a Planewave 17 inch telescope with an Apogee U16 camera, as well as a Paramount ME mount to capture the image.

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The 27th object on Messier's list, now known as M27 or the Dumbbell Nebula, is a planetary nebula, the type of nebula our Sun will produce when nuclear fusion stops in its core. M27 is one of the brightest planetary nebulae on the sky, and can be seen toward the constellation of the Fox (Vulpecula) with binoculars.

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Sharpless 115 stands just north and west of Deneb, the alpha star of Cygnus the Swan in planet Earth's skies. Noted in the 1959 catalog by astronomer Stewart Sharpless (as Sh2-115) the faint but lovely emission nebula lies along the edge of one of the outer Milky Way's giant molecular clouds, about 7,500 light-years away.

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Nearby and bright, spiral galaxies M65 (top) and M66 stand out in this engaging cosmic snapshot.

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Dumbell Nebula - a planetary nebula in the constellation Vulpecula, at a distance of about 1360 light years.

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