Winners of the Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2021 are revealed

The winning images from the Royal Museums Greenwich Astronomy Photographer of the Year have been revealed.

Shuchang Dong was crowned the overall winner of Astronomy Photographer of the Year for his mesmerising photograph The Golden Ring.

The image shows an annular solar eclipse taken in the Ali region of Tibet on 21 June 2020.

‘This place has year-round sunny weather, but in front of the annular eclipse, I saw dark clouds all over the sky,’ recalled photographer Shuchang Dong.

‘We were waiting with anxious minds but we were lucky. Within a minute of the annular eclipse, the sunshine penetrated through the clouds and afterwards the Sun was sucked into the thick clouds. We were so lucky here!’

Meanwhile, Polar Lights Dance by Dmitrii Rybalka was awarded the top prize in the Aurorae category.

‘I’m intrigued by this image. It is both beautiful but extremely unsettling,’ said Sue Prichard, competition judge and Senior Curator, Arts at Royal Museums Greenwich.

‘The juxtaposition of the vividness of the green with the inky blue of the ship is so dense, almost like velvet. However the lack of any sign of human life on this steadily moving vessel feels like the opening scene of a science fiction film.’

If you’d like to see the winning photos for yourself, visit the new Astronomy Photographer of the Year exhibition at the National Maritime Museum from 18 September.