Saturday, February 10, 2007

Galactic Centre

Stars of the Galactic Center - Credit: Susan Stolovy (SSC/Caltech) et al., JPL-Caltech, NASA

The center of our Milky Way is hidden from the prying eyes of optical telescopes by clouds of obscuring dust and gas.

But in this stunning vista, the Spitzer Space Telescope's infrared cameras, penetrate much of the dust revealing the stars of the crowded galactic center region. A mosaic of many smaller snapshots, the detailed, false-color image shows older, cool stars in bluish hues. Reddish glowing dust clouds are associated with young, hot stars in stellar nurseries. The galactic center lies some 26,000 light-years away, toward the constellation Sagittarius.

At that distance, this picture spans about 900 light-years.

Discover the Cosmos with Astronomy Picture of The Day
A Cold, Bright Universe from Centauri Dreams
Magnetic Explosions In The Distant Universe from Science Daily
Hubble illuminates large Cluster of Diverse Galaxies Hubblesite.

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