Best Night Sky Photos of the Week: Jan. 11, 2014

Pleiades Star Cluster Sparkles in Amazing Stargazer Photo

The Pleiades star cluster dazzles brilliantly in this deep-exposure, widefield photo recently sent in to SPACE.com by veteran astrophotographer Josh Knutson. [See how he took the amazing photo here.]

Ancients: A Celestial Timelapse of the Darkest Skies on Earth

Nicholas Buer (@NicholasBuer, facebook.com/NicholasBuerPhotography)

Photographer Nicholas Buer (@NicholasBuer, facebook.com/NicholasBuerPhotography) created this timelapse in the high desert region of Chile known as San Pedro de Atacama, a place revered by astronomers for having some of Earths cleanest, darkest skies. [See the Video]

Monster Sunspot Dominates Sun Photos by Amateur Astronomers

Giuseppe Petricca

Amateur astronomers in Italy and Canada have safely captured amazing views of a colossal sunspot seven times the size of Earth that is currently making its way across the face of the sun. [ See how they did it here.]

Milky Way Sparkles Over Windmill in Amazing Panoramic Photo

Night sky photographer Sean Parker captured this splendid 14-shot panoramic view of the Milky Way arching over a windmill in Paulden, Ariz. [See how he did it.]

These BOOTES Were Made for Watching

Jeff Dai

Astrophotographer Jeff Dai sent in a photo of stars in the constellation Orion and Sirius rising above the Yunnan Astronomical Observatory in southwestern China, taken on Dec. 26, 2013. The observatory makes up part of the BOOTES network. Dai explained in an e-mail message to SPACE.com: "BOOTES, the Burst Observer and Optical Transient Exploring System, is a network of astronomical observatories with sites in Southern Spain, New Zealand and China, devoted to studying optical emissions from gamma ray bursts (GRBs) that occur in the universe. Also notable in the photograph are Barnard's Loop at the top and the Rosette emission nebula at middle left." [See how he did it.]

Aurora, Be Mine

Auroramax

Canada's automated aurora camera tweeted this photo on Jan. 3, 2014. The tweet read: "AURORAMAX GALLERY • Latest #photo of #aurora borealis above #Yellowknife, NWT taken at 23:42 MST on January 2, 2014. pic.twitter.com/LLPeyMZsyB" [See how he did it.]

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