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Mars and Two Nebulas Shine in Stunning Skywatcher Photos

Mars and Two Nebulas 2
These amazing images are of the planet Mars passing below two nebulas. Astrophotographer Derek Demeter took the images from the Stardust Ranch in Okeechobee, Florida. (Image credit: <a href="www.seminolestate.edu/planet">Derek Demeter</a>/Seminole State College)

These amazing images show the planet Mars passing below two nebulas.

Astrophotographer Derek Demeter took the images from the Stardust Ranch in Okeechobee, Florida. Demeter is the director of the Emil Buehler Perpetual Trust Planetarium at Seminole State College of Florida.

The photos capture Mars passing below two objects known as the Lagoon and Trifid nebulas.  Both are located in the constellation Sagittarius and are found in the central region of our Milky Way galaxy.

“This is a great perspective of our solar system relative to the galaxy,” Demeter wrote in an email to Space.com.

The image shows Mars passing below two objects known as the Lagoon and Trifid nebulas. Astrophotographer Derek Demeter took the images from the Stardust Ranch in Okeechobee, Florida. (Image credit: Derek Demeter/Seminole State College)

Located about 5,000 light-years from Earth, the Lagoon Nebula is one of two star-forming regions visible to the unaided eye from the Northern Hemisphere. It is about 110 light-years across and is also known as Messier 8 or NGC 6523. The Trifid Nebula (Messier 20 or NGC 6514) is a combination of an emission nebula (the red area), a reflection nebula (the blue area) and a dark nebula. Also visible are the star-forming regions of NGC 6559, IC 1274 and IC 1275.

To see more amazing night sky photos submitted by Space.com readers, visit our astrophotography archive.

Editor's note: If you have an amazing night sky photo you'd like to share for a possible story or image gallery, please contact managing editor Tariq Malik at spacephotos@space.com.

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Nina Sen is a freelance writer and producer who covered night sky photography and astronomy for Space.com. She began writing and producing content for Space.com in 2011 with a focus on story and image production, as well as amazing space photos captured by NASA telescopes and other missions. Her work also includes coverage of amazing images by astrophotographers that showcase the night sky's beauty.