Discover incredible astro photography from this photo competition

Discover incredible astro photography from this photo competition
(Image credit: Painting the Sky © Thomas Kast)

Shortlisted astro photography from the Royal Observatory Greenwich's Insight Investment Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2020 has recently been unveiled – and the results are truly out of this world. This contest is the biggest space photography competition in the world, with a record number of over 5,200 entries from almost 70 countries around the globe.

This astro photography competition, which is run by the Royal Observatory Greenwich, sponsored by Insight Investment and in association with BBC Sky at Night magazine, is now celebrating its twelfth year. Some of the shortlisted photos from this year's entrants include a full moon situated next to the top of The Shard, London, a incredible view of the northern lights over Stokksnes, Iceland, and the star Betelgeuse. 

• Read more: Best camera for astrophotography

Competition judge and Royal Observatory Greenwich astronomer Dr Emily Drabek-Maunder said: "Astronomy is one of the most accessible sciences and everyone has looked up at the night sky at one time or another and wondered what is out there in the cosmos. Astro photography bridges the gap between art and science, highlighting the natural beauty of our universe."

(Image credit: The Green Lady © Nicholas Roemmelt)

Among the shortlisted astro photography images was the beautiful photo above from Nicholas Roemmelt depicting the aurora over Hamn i Senja, Skaland, Norway. Roemmelt said: "Although I have had the chance to gaze at and photograph the northern lights many times, I have never seen that mysterious 'green lady' before. It wasn't until our journey to Norway last March that she unexpectedly appeared with her magical green clothes."

The winners of the Royal Observatory Greenwich's Insight Investment Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2020 competition will be announced on Thursday 10 September 2020. The winning images will be displayed in an exhibition at the National Maritime Museum from 23 October, alongside a selection of exceptional shortlisted photos. 

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Winners and shortlisted entries will also be published in the competition's official book. This will be available in September from bookstores and online. You can also pre-order the book now from the Royal Museums Greenwich online shop. In the meantime, see more about the shortlisted images here.

(Image credit: The Moon And the Shard © Mathew Browne)

(Image credit: Galactic Portal © Marcin Zajac)

(Image credit: Desert Magic © Stefan Liebermann)

(Image credit: The Many Jets and Shells of Centaurus A © Connor Matherne)

(Image credit: Iceland © Kristina Makeeva)

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Louise Carey

With over a decade of photographic experience, Louise arms Digital Camera World with a wealth of knowledge on photographic technique and know-how – something at which she is so adept that she's delivered workshops for the likes of ITV and Sue Ryder. Louise also brings years of experience as both a web and print journalist, having served as features editor for Practical Photography magazine and contributing photography tutorials and camera analysis to titles including Digital Camera Magazine and  Digital Photographer. Louise currently shoots with the Fujifilm X-T200 and the Nikon D800, capturing self-portraits and still life images, and is DCW's ecommerce editor, meaning that she knows good camera, lens and laptop deals when she sees them.