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Within reach – Petr Horalek

The skies above ESO’s Paranal Observatory resemble oil on water as greens, yellows and blues blend to create an iridescent skyscape. The rocky, barren landscape below evokes an alien world, complementing the cosmic display above. This photo was given an Honorable mention in the Astronomy category. (PA)

Breathtaking photos from the Royal Society photography competition 2017 show science like never before

From bear-shaped embryos to Antarctic glaciers and sleepy polar bears, the Royal Society photography competition shows the wonders of science like never before.

The annual competition saw a record-breaking 1,100 entries this year.

‘Icy sugar cubes’ by Peter Convey was judged the overall winner, as well as claiming first place in the Earth Science and Climatology category.

Mr Convey said: ‘It’s been an incredible privilege to work in the Antarctic for nearly 30 years now, every time I go there it takes my breath away.’

The aim of the competition is to use images to make science accessible to a wide audience.

Entrants could put forward their images for six different categories: Astronomy, Behaviour, Earth Science and Climatology, Ecology and Environmental Science, and Micro-imaging.

Judge Ulrike Muller said: ‘The winning image epitomises the aims of this competition – celebrating the power of photography to communicate science.

‘The image shows the stunning beauty of a rare geological phenomenon, bi-directional crevassing in an ice sheet, and invites the viewer to wonder at the scale and the mechanisms creating such patterns.’

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