There’s nothing quite like looking up at the sky to remind us how small we are in the universe.

It’s an experience that’s simultaneously terrifying and calming. At the very least, the experience does at least serve to put our problems in perspective.

That’s probably why so many people have devoted their lives to craning their necks up to the night’s sky to observe the wonders of the universe.

And the Insight Astronomy Photographer Of The Year awards serve to reward those who do with prizes for the beautiful images they come back with. From gaseous clouds floating through the cosmos, to the planets of our solar system, to the stars themselves, there’s plenty on show this year.

The overall winner was a photo of the Rho Ophiuchi Clouds by Artem Mironov from Russia. This is a region of space where stars are born, 460 light years away from Earth. To put that in perspective, that’s nearly 3 quadrillion (3000,000,000,000,000) miles away.

However, the Rho Ophiuchi Clouds are merely the tip of the iceberg of the beautiful pictures which won this year’s awards.

Keep clicking to see some of the other beautiful winners, runners up, and commended entries!

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