Ye gods! Royal Observatory chooses best space pics

Taken in New Zealand, "Guiding Light to the Stars" won in the Earth and Space category of the Royal Observatory's space photo contest.

(Credit: Mark Gee)

If you’ve ever tried to take photos of the moon, celestial bodies, or even auroras, you know it can be a very tricky job. But trying and failing can give a better appreciation for outstanding space photos such as the winners of the Royal Observatory’s annual contest.

The venerable British institution straddling the prime meridian recently announced honorees in its Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2013, and the results are spectacular.

From a shot of people silhouetted against the moon to a view of the sun’s delicate corona to images of distant stars and nebulae, winning selections were made from more than 1,200 shots taken around the world.

One of the most striking is “Guiding Light to the Stars” by Australia’s Mark Gee, winner in the Earth and Space category.

This year’s best space images (pictures)

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