Stunning Photos From The 2014 Astronomy Photography Awards

Earth and Space WInner 2014

Aurora over a Glacier Lagoon by James Woodend. Overall and Earth and Space winner. Source: ViralSpell

Space has intrigued us since the dawn of time, when the world’s earliest civilizations conjured up myths and fables to explain the sun, moon and stars. While our knowledge of space has grown drastically over the years, there is still much that we will never know. Images from the Astronomy Photography Awards don’t explain wormholes or supernovae, but they do capture some of the most wondrous images of our massive solar system. Keep scrolling to check out this year’s winners, along with our favorite submissions.

Young Winner 2014

The Horsehead Nebula (IC 434) by Shishir and Shashank Dholakia. Young winner. Source: Creative Review

Astronomy Photography Awards 2014 Winners

Ripples in a Pond by Alexandra Hart. Winner in Our Solar System category. Source: ViralSpell

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The Ghostly Remains Of Homs, Syria

Homs Syria 2014

Torn apart over three years by military confrontations between the Syrian military and opposition, the Homs we see today is a shell of its rich past. If Homs is rightly considered the “Capital of the Revolution,” this photo presents a harrowing assessment of the revolution’s status.

30 Satellite Images That Will Change The Way You See The Earth

Removing ourselves from our surroundings often brings us closer to them. Astronauts speak of the Overview Effect, passing over Earth and seeing it only as a fragile speck in a massive solar system. The desire to protect and preserve is felt, as national boundaries evaporate and a global interdependency is realized. These satellite images are fascinating, overwhelming and thought provoking. So, sit back and take a trip around the globe.

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Satellite Images Kansas

These little circles in the Kansas prairie look like beautiful modern art, but they’re actually center-pivot irrigation circles for crops. Water is pulled from Ogallala aquifer and shot through a giant sprinkler that pivots around a central point. Source: Wikipedia

Burning Man

An art festival that ignites the Nevada desert for a week leading up to Labor Day, Burning Man is about self-reliance, respect and building community (even though you have to pay for your own actualization). Source: iO

Satellite Images Salina Salt

Salt evaporation ponds are manmade devices used to separate salt from seawater. The colors that result are due to the salinity of the water, but it makes for a beautiful palette. Source: Minimograph

Satellite Images Rubalkhali

The largest sand desert in the world, Rub’ Al Khali is also known as The Empty Quarter. Its sandy hills cover parts of Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman and the United Arab Emirates. Source: Wikipedia

Satellite Images Richat

The Richat is a deeply eroded geologic dome in the Sahara Desert. Ever watching, the “eye” is made of bedrock, sand, plant life and salt sediments. Source: Wikimedia

Satellite Images Riverbank London

No longer in existence, the Riverbank Arena in London was constructed for field hockey games during the 2012 Summer Olympics. Source: Minimograph

Satellite Images Great Blue Hole

60 miles off the coast of Belize is a giant blue chasm in the ocean. The world-renowned scuba diving location includes a vast array of marine life, including giant groupers, nurse sharks and coral reef formations. Source: Visions Of Earth

Satellite Images Namibia Desert

Arid for approximately 55-80 million years, the Namib Desert in Namibia and Angola might be the oldest desert on the planet. Red, vast and harsh, the desert is a lunar landscape on Earth, with small vestiges of water as it sits on the coast. Source: Wikimedia

Satellite Images Potash Ponds

Utah’s Potash ponds are used in the separation of potassium from various mined and manufactured salts. The resulting potassium is used for fertilizer, animal feed and water softening. Source: Tumblr

Satellite Images Pakistan

Following an earthquake in Pakistan on September 24, 2013, an island formed off of the coast of Gwadar. Source: Business Insider

Satellite Images Mt. Cleveland

Mt. Cleveland erupted in May 2006 and astronauts were the first to see the billowing smoke from the Alaskan volcano. The tallest mountain in The Islands of the Four Mountains, it frequently blows ash and smoke into the sky. Source: Wikimedia

Satellite Images Niagara Falls

Erosive and violent, the three waterfalls that make up Niagara rip through the landscape, picking up rock dust and salt along the way making the water a rich, greenish color. Source: Niagara Falls Live

Hong Kong Duck

Created by Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman, this rubber duck sculpture has made its way to various ports around the world. When this photo was taken, the duck was cruising in Hong Kong. Source: Business Insider

Bolivia

The border between Bolivia and Argentina is a pitted landscape with snow-topped mountains and verdant lakes. Source: Wikimedia

Satellite Images Huntsville

Farmland and airstrips blend together in this photo of the Huntsville, AL International Airport. Source: Wikimedia

Satellite Images Austin

A large parking depot offers cheap and spacious parking at the Austin, Texas airport. Source: Minimograph

Arlit Niger

Built between the Sahara desert and the Aïr Mountains, uranium mines have meant big business for Niger, though it remains one of the poorest countries on Earth. Residents fear the effects of uranium mining, from radiation poisoning to cancer. Source: One Name Global

Satellite Images Mont Michel

This French commune towers over a small tidal island off the coast of France. Access to the island is dependent on the tides, uniting human ingenuity with natural beauty. Source: Satellite Imaging Corporation

Satellite Images Atafu Atoll

What appears to be a triangular fort in the middle of the Pacific Ocean is actually a group of 42 coral islets that are part of Tokelau, a New Zealand territory. The geometric atoll surrounds a coral reef lagoon and only has one guesthouse. Source: Wikipedia

Satellite Images Grand Canyon

Lush greenery borders craggy rocks as the Colorado River cuts its way through the Grand Canyon. Source: Wikimedia

Satellite Images Lille

Designed by French Field Marshal Vauban, the “Queen of the Citadels” is the largest and best-preserved citadel in France. A self contained city, it houses 1200 soldiers behind walls in a star formation, which inspired the construction of The Pentagon. Source: Blogspot

Satellite Images Tulip Fields

Brilliant colors line the fields in Holland during tulip season. Like a loom, the flowers knit the story of a people and their history. Source: Miss At La Playa

Dashtekavir Iran

A large salt desert in the middle of the Iranian plateau, the unique soil makeup causes the land to look like cappuccino. Source: Wikimedia

Bahamas

Sand dunes along the Bahamas show how the tides and ocean have shaped them. Source: The Huffington Post

Satellite Images Dubai Palm

The Palm Jumeirah is an artificial archipelago constructed off of the coast of Dubai in the shape of a palm tree. The New York Times reported that the man-made islands are sinking, but the government refutes those claims. Source: Wikipedia

Satellite Images Valparaiso

Recognized for having the largest outdoor swimming pool in the world, the private resort of San Alfonso Del Mar pumps water in from the Pacific Ocean that is filtered and treated. The cost of construction was estimated to be 2 billion dollars. Source: Visions Of Earth

Satellite Images Greenland Glacier

One of the largest outlet glaciers, the Kangerdlugssuaq pushes ice into the ocean. While rapidly moving from 2000 to 2005, it has since slowed again. Source: European Space Agency

Satellite Images Iquitos

The largest city in the Peruvian rainforest, Iquitos’ motto is Carpent tua poma nepotes, or “Your children will harvest your fruits”. Bordered by Moronococha Lake to the west and surrounded by the Nanay, Itaya and Amazon Rivers, it appears as an island in a river. Source: Wikipedia

Satellite Images Persian Gulf

The northern end of the Persian Gulf snakes its way into Iran and Iraq via the Shatt Al-Arab River. In the 1980s, the river was the site of violent protests over rights to the river. Source: European Space Agency

Satellite Images Light Pollution

Viewing the Earth at night in this composite photo, one can see the differences among continents, countries, and communities. This is the world at night, overpopulated cities and vast emptiness, industrialized countries and forgotten tribes, city lights and bonfires. Source: Wikipedia