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The Sciences

Stunning Photos of the Night Sky We Rarely See

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For most people, the night sky has lost its luster, because the places we live tend to be seeped in light pollution. Only the brightest stars reveal themselves on clear nights in our urban enclaves, a tiny snippet of what’s really above us. Fortunately, talented photographers around the globe are pointing their cameras skyward to reveal the splendor of darkness. The World at Night (TWAN)

on Wednesday announced the winners of its annual International Earth and Sky Photo

contest, which included entries from over 55 countries.

Night Sky Splendor

The contest is meant to draw our attention to the magnificence of the night sky, with the hope that people across the world will engage in efforts to control light pollution and preserve this natural wonder. Over 800 images were submitted. Here’s a look at a few of the top photos: The first prize in “Against the Lights” category, and overall contest winner, went to Giorgia Hofer of Italy for her photo “Light in the Sky” taken on New Year’s Day from Cibiana Pass in the Dolomites of northern Italy.

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The first prize in the "Beauty of the Night Sky” category went to Luc Perrot from Réunion Island of France for his image “Over the Top," in which a volcano on Reunion Island peeks out of a sea of clouds and rests under stars.

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The second-place winner in the “Beauty” category was Ben Coffman of Portland, Oregon who submitted “False Dusk and Falls at Oregon Coast,” taken in February from Hug Point along the Pacific coast in northern Oregon.

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“Reflected Aurora” by Alex Conu of Romania is the second place winner in the “Lights” category. This shot was taken on March 15 from Lofoten Islands in northern Norway.

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Want more? Get your night-sky fix with this soaring video compilation of all the winners – and then go out in the world and do what you can to make your world a darker place.

Stunning Night Sky Images: Earth & Sky Photo Contest 2014

from Babak Tafreshi

on Vimeo

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