Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2013

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Highly Commended in the 'Deep Space' category. 'M81 – 82 and Integrated Flux Nebula' by Ivan Eder, Hungary. Lying at a distance of twelve million light years from Earth, M81 and M82 are galaxies with a difference. Close encounters between the two objects have forced gas down into their central regions. In M81 this influx of gas is being devoured by a supermassive black hole. In neighbouring M82 the gas is fuelling a burst of new star formation which in turn is blasting clouds of hydrogen (shown in red) back out into space. (Ivan Elder/ Royal Observatory’s Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2013)

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A beautiful shot of the Milky Way has won the prestigious Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2013. Now in its fifth year, the competition received a record number of entries - more than 1200 from 49 countries. All of the category winners, runners-up and commended images will be exhibited at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, London, until 23 February 2014.

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