Brendan Devine, 15, stacked more than 60 frames to create his winning picture, Lunar Reversal, and then used software to invert the image, making it a negative. The judges said this showed the Moon in a whole new light, allowing the texture to jump out. And this willingness to play with images was something they had seen in this category more than others.
Damian Peach said he had had near perfect conditions for viewing the rings of Saturn, in March of this year. His picture, Serene Saturn, shows a variety of coloured bands within the atmosphere of the planet. "It could almost be a Hubble Space Telescope picture, but it was taken by an amateur astronomer using commercially available equipment," said Dr Kukula.
Yu Jun's Geminids over the Lamost telescope shows a night's worth of meteors over an observatory in China. "This picture shows all these meteors, grains of dust burning up high the atmosphere," said Dr Kukula. "Because the photographer has composited all the meteors from one night, you can see they all come from one spot in the sky.