Astronomy Photographer of the Year has announced the winners of its 2022 contest. The overall winner is Gerald Rhemann from Austria. His photo Disconnection Event is a rare image of a piece of Comet Leonard’s gas tail being disconnected and carried away by the solar wind.
Other than Rhemann’s impressive photo which won the overall prize and the Planets, Comets and Asteroids category, the contest has also announced winners and runner-ups in all of its categories. They kindly shared it with DIYP, so we bring you the best of the best from the 14th Astronomy Photographer of the Year.
The competition is run by the Royal Observatory Greenwich, supported by Liberty Specialty Markets, and in association with BBC Sky at Night Magazine. This year’s contest received over 3,000 entries from photographers coming from 67 countries across the globe.
This year’s winner captured his splendid Comet Leonard image in Namibia on Christmas Day 2021. Comet Leonard was the brightest comet of the year in 2021, but we won’t be able to see it from Earth again. “This award is one of the highlights of my astrophotography work,” Rhemann said. “All the effort that went into making this image a success was worth it.”
The Young Astronomy Photographer of the Year are two fourteen-year-old boys from China. Yang Hanwen and Zhou Zezhen collaborated to capture Andromeda Galaxy: The Neighbour. It’s another stunning photo from the contest, showing one of the Milky Way’s closest and largest neighbors. Yang Hanwen said that their photo “shows how gorgeous our nearest neighbor is. Zhou Zezhen added that they feel honored, and wanted to thank the judges for choosing their photo. “One of the main functions of astrophotography is to attract more people to fall in love with astronomy by showing the beauty of the Universe,” he concluded.
Like every year, Astronomy Photographer of the Year selects the overall winner and winners in two special categories. In addition to them, the contest chooses a winner in each of these nine categories:
- Skyscapes: Landscape and cityscape images of twilight and the night sky featuring the Milky Way, star trails, meteor showers, comets, conjunctions, constellation rises, halos and noctilucent clouds alongside elements of earthly scenery.
- Aurorae: Photographs featuring auroral activity.
- People and Space:Photographs of the night sky including people or a human-interest element.
- Our Sun: Solar images including transits and solar eclipses.
- Our Moon: Lunar images including occultation of planets and lunar eclipses.
- Planets, Comets and Asteroids: Everything else in our solar system, including planets and their satellites, comets, asteroids and other forms of zodiacal debris.
- Stars and Nebulae: Deep space objects within the Milky Way galaxy, including stars, star clusters, supernova remnants, nebulae and other intergalactic phenomena.
- Galaxies: Deep space objects beyond the Milky Way galaxy, including galaxies, galaxy clusters, and stellar associations.
- Young Astronomy Photographer of the Year: Pictures taken by budding astronomers under the age of 16 years old.
The overall and category winners, as well as runner-ups, will be exhibited from 17 September at the National Maritime Museum in London. But if you’re far from London like me, you can still enjoy the digital version of these splendid photos below.