This year's Astronomy Photographer of the Year competition is bigger then ever before with a host of new prizes. We'll spend the next few weeks introducing you to each category before the winners are announced on 17 September. 

Astronomy Photographer of the Year Moon & Antelao by Marcella Giulia

Skyscapes, sponsored by Insight Investment

The Skyscapes category recognizes beautiful images that span a wide variety of subjects, depicted as part of a landscape or cityscape. Photographers were invited to submit images that captured twilight and the night sky, whilst also including such subjects as the Milky Way, star trails, meteor showers, comets, conjunctions, noctilucent clouds and eclipses alongside elements of earthly scenery.

One of our new categories introduced in 2015, Skyscapes was our most popular category by far. With almost three times as many than the second most popular category, there were 983 images submitted, making up 38% of the total images entered. Judging this category was therefore a tough challenge for our panel, but one that has reaped great rewards for the photographers of the 26 images shortlisted.

Our aim is for the Skyscapes category to offer photographers the chance to illustrate a combination of talent for capturing aesthetic quality, along with technical skill as an astronomy photographer, but often without the need for high-end professional equipment. Consequently, the number of breathtaking skyscape images that we saw entered this year was a wonder to behold. Perhaps the appeal of the Skyscapes category is how accessible it is to astrophotographers spanning all experience levels, from relative newcomers to those who have years of practice under their belt.

“We are delighted that the Skyscapes category has proved so popular. There have been some amazing submissions and we would like to congratulate all the entrants on the inspiring creativity and technical skill they have shown.” Insight Investment

See a selection of shortlisted images here.