Vote for your favorite inspiring astrophoto

By Phil Plait | December 17, 2010 2:00 am

Stuart Clark, a UK astronomy journalist, has a poll on his website asking readers to vote on the most inspiring astronomy image of the year. A lot of the ones he chose look pretty familiar! Interestingly, the one I picked is not in the lead by a long shot, but then I’m happy to know tastes vary. Go ahead and take a look, then vote!

Tip o’ the dew shield to Max Alexander.

MORE ABOUT: Stuart Clark

Comments (9)

  1. I went for the Weird Dunescape on Mars, I didn’t expect to see something so detailed from another planet. This is 3rd at the moment. What did you pick Phil?

  2. Messier Tidy Upper

    Some nice choices there. :-)

    Do I go for Comet Hartley 2 seen close up or our erupting Sun or the spectacular beauty of the Carina ‘Mystic Mountain’ nebula one?

    What image “inspires” most – and “inspires” the most *what* : wonder, curiosity, action? Decisions, decisions!

    All would be worthy winners though. :-)

  3. Beau

    “Inspires” is definitely subjective. They all inspire wonder and amazement, and from the bunch Mystic Mountains is the probably the most beautiful, but the Hartley 2 is a closeup image from a perspective we’ve never had before, which is pretty inspiring as well! I ended up going with the Hartley 2, more for it’s importance than it’s beauty.

  4. Gus Snarp

    My choice is totally losing. As Beau says, it’s subjective, obviously. But I went with the microwave background by Planck. Others may be more beautiful, but this is inspiring by my definition. It’s a sneak peek into the earliest part of our universe and perhaps the best chance for understanding that early universe and how things came to be as they are.

  5. Gus Snarp

    Ok, it’s the sky in the microwave spectrum, not exactly the cosmic microwave background, but still, it’s in there.

  6. Robert

    I voted Hartley 2, in honor of the feat of engineering and timing required to pull off the shot. Though obviously the telescopes that took the deep space photos are technological marvels by their own right.

  7. Voted for the microwave sky, which is running 5th out of 10, with 9% of the vote.

  8. Michael

    Tough call all around, for sure, ended up voting for the Mystic Mountains since the criteria was ‘most inspiring’ and my passion for the cosmos has surely found a particular focus on star birth and star death, but gosh, Mars is so damn fascinating as well… took a while to make up my mind…

  9. IanS

    Oh man… you broke yet another website! Bandwidth limit exceeded…


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