2017 Photo Contest Finalists

Our readers took aerospace photography to new heights.

The star Sadr (Gamma Cygni) is the center of the Cygnus constellation, where the swan's wings join the body. The 2 bright regions separated by a dark dust lane is also know as the "Butterfly Nebula". NGC6910 is the small open cluster of stars just above Sadr.
Balloonists landing their craft in the open field of a local business.
Wolfe Air Aviation's Learjet 25 camera plane gets the perfect close-up shot of Air Canada's new livery on a just-delivered Boeing 787-9 during a photo mission from YVR.
CH124; SeaKing of 443 Sqdr. conducting Ship Based training onboard HMCS Vancouver in Straight of Georgia; 14 Jan 2016. Pilots Maj. Troy Maa and Capt. Chelsey Llewellyn
I was sent to the remote Northern Saskatchewan area to photograph a power line upgrade. The Skycrane had just taken off from being refueled and picked up it's next lift close to it's helipad. The two ground crew members looked on in awe of it's massive lifting capability under dramatic sky in the background.
This image is the product of a collaboration between 2 photographers, Greg Marshall, and Kay Wyatt. During a total eclipse, features around the edge of the Sun that otherwise cannot be seen without special filters become easy to see. This image was captured near the end of totality, when the Sun's bright photosphere was just about to re-appear and swamp out these features. We were very fortunate that a very large prominence was positioned such that almost all of it could be seen (center top). The glow around the rim of the Moon is the Sun's inner corona, while the much brighter and thinner line is part of the chromosphere, which reveals details of the Moon's outline in silhouette.
I was tasked to photograph a small helicopter training company in BC. As the company operates R44 and the relatively new Guimbal Cabri G2, I wanted to illustrate both machines in a hover in the beautiful back country of BC.
I was asked to photograph the final leg of Vimy Flight cross Canada tour in Victoria, BC. Vimy Flight is a team of dedicated volunteer pilots and ground support that had the honour of performing a commemorative bi-plane fly-past over the Vimy Ridge Memorial in Vimy France on April 9, 2017.
The Lagoon (M8) and Trifid (M20) are both bright nebulae in the southern sky and popular targets for observing in the Summer. The area on the right is considerably dimmer and harder to see, but adds nicely to a wide-field photographic composition. The Sulfur-II channel provides the texture in the center of the Lagoon.
Although it is part of a much larger area of nebulosity, the name "Elephant's Trunk Nebula" (IC1396) comes from this small section that vaguely resembles its namesake. The large region of gas is ionized by ultraviolet rays from the bright start just to the right of the trunk.
While I was T.D.Y. to MacDill A.F.B. I was apart of the morning shift to prep our jets for the daily flying schedule. On this particular day a dense fog had rolled in across the flightline.
This is my representation of the eclipse progression as seen at Cascade Head on the Oregon Coast.
A FlyBe Dash 8 approaching Belfast City Airport at sunset.
Aviation fans are taking pictures and filming videos of Winair, which is flying just few meters above them.
Air France is taking off from Princess Juliana Airport just few minutes before strong thunderstorm.
I was facing the sun in the evening when this civilian plane was landing.
This is a large remnant left by an ancient supernova, and is found in the constellation Taurus.
One of the pleasures of traveling in Iceland during the cool fall months is the chance to see the aurora glowing and dancing in the dark sky.
Underside of a Spitfire from the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight.
Blue Angels diamond formation take off from NAF El Centro during Winter Training 2017.
A police helicopter landing at a security event, creating a storm with Autumn-leaves going up in the air.
A Coast Guard HC130 crew from Clearwater Florida, along with a crew from the Texas Air National Guard wait for a forklift to unload a pallet of generators in Key West. These service members were in Key West in support of the recovery efforts during Hurricane Irma.
B-1 doing a afterburner pass during a twilight show.
August 21st total eclipse.
The moon crossed the path of the sun over the Teton Mountain Range as seen from the top of Table Mountain in Grand Teton National Park.
With the Book Cliff mountains as a backdrop, the V-22 Osprey hovers behind the CF-18 Hornet at the Grand Junction Airshow.
On the flight line at the Cal Capital Airshow. Sunrise and sunbeams shine brightly over this Blue Angel Hornet.
This photograph was taken from the open ramp of a USMC KC-130J during the Weapons Tactics Instructors course WTI 1-16. We were flying over the sand dunes northwest of Yuma, Arizona at an altitude of between 10,000 and 13,000 feet.
A green shirt signals that a Super Hornet is ready to launch and runs out of the way prior to launch from the USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76).
A selfie taken with the US flag while flying a U-2 spyplane over 60,000 feet.
A Coast Guard MH60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Air Station Clearwater, Florida prepares to fly after Hurricane Irma passes through the area.
This is a composite of all of the zoom photos taken of the eclipse overlaid on a wide angle shot from my Nikon D750. All shots were taken from a U-2 over 70,000 ft around Madras, OR.
U.S. Air Force tactical control party airmen from the 227th Air Support Operations Squadron descend from a 1-150th Assault Helicopter Battalion UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter during joint training for New Jersey Task Force One at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J., June 28, 2017. The primary mission of New Jersey Task Force One is to provide advanced technical search and rescue capabilities to victims trapped or entombed in structurally collapsed buildings.
Senior Airman Sean Meehan (left) and Staff Sgt. Kane Lawlor security after a tactical air insertion by a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter from the New Jersey Army National Guard's 1-150 Assault Helicopter Battalion on April 10, 2014 at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J. The New Jersey Army and Air National Guardsmen took part in a joint training exercise with the U.S. Marine Corps. Meehan and Lawlor are both tactical air control party airmen from the New Jersey Air National Guard's 227th Air Support Operations Squadron.
March 29, 2017-Boston,MA. An arriving jet to Boston’s Logan airport is framed by heavy clouds, fog, and the fading sun.
Feb 20, 2016. Boston,MA. A young boy photographs an arriving airliner on a street bordering Boston’s Logan airport.
A Bonanza departs the pattern as a C-17 transits the area.
Paratroopers prepare to load onto MC-130Js as part of a special operations exercise.
Thunder from above.
As both a pilot and skydiver, feeling the freedom of being high in the sky, is where I feel at home. As both of us and the plane fall back to reality through the beautiful landscape and crystal blue sky, this brings together the magnificent views of the Tasman Region.

To no one's surpise, the fifth annual Air & Space photo contest produced some real gems.

Our judges selected 10 finalists in each of four categories—Military, Civilian, Astronomy, and People & Planes. They appear here along with descriptions supplied by the photographers. Winners in each category, as well as a Grand Prize winner and a Readers’ Choice winner, were announced in March 2018, and can be seen here.

Thanks to all who sent in photographs or participated by voting!