Saturday, March 17, 2012

NASA: Released - Atlas of Known Universe

 This week NASA released an atlas and catalog of 18,000 images consisting of more than 563 million stars, galaxies, asteroids, planets, and other objects in the sky--many of which have never been seen or identified before--along with information on all of those objects.
The Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) mission, which was a collaboration of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the University of California Los Angeles, collected the data over the past two years.
The WISE mission, which mapped the entire sky, uncovered a number of never-before-seen objects in the night sky, including an entirely new class of stars and the first "Trojan" asteroid that shares the Earth's orbital path. The study also determined that there were far fewer mid-sized asteroids near Earth than had been previously thought.  In order to make the data easier to use, NASA condensed the 2.7 million digital images down to 18,000 that cover the entire sky.

Click star map for slide show

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