The winning image for the Our Solar System category of the 2013 Astronomy Photographer of the Year competition.

The Our Solar System category is for photos of our Sun and its family of planets, moons, asteroids and comets. The Moon is a wonderful object to photograph, with constant changes of view throughout the lunar cycle; see our page on How to photograph the Moon for some expert tips. Photographing a comet, meanwhile, is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that can be achieved with relatively modest equipment; visit How to photograph comets to find out more.

Winner of the APY 2013 Our Solar System category

The overall winner for the Our Solar System category in 2013 was Man-To Hui (China), whose ‘Corona Composite of 2012: Australian Totality’ was taken using a Canon 50D camera with a Canon 70-200mm f/4 lens.

This image is a demonstration of both precision timing and rigorous post-processing. It gives the viewer a window onto the elusive outer atmosphere of the Sun – the corona. ‘It took me two months to process all the images to achieve this relatively satisfactory corona-composite result,’ the photographer stated. ‘This is the longest image-processing work I have ever experienced.’ Judge Melanie Vandenbrouck added: ‘The delicate wisps of sunlight peering behind the silhouette of the Moon have a frailty that speaks of the unique beauty of our solar system.’

Astronomy Photographer of the Year competition

The Astronomy Photographer of the Year competition is an annual global search for the most beautiful and spectacular visions of the cosmos by amateur and professional astrophotographers. The winning images are showcased in a stunning exhibition at the Royal Observatory Greenwich. 

Visit the IAPY 2015 exhibition