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Striking submillimeter image reveals Milky Way in unprecedented detail

by • February 23, 2016 • No Comments

The European Southern Observatory (ESO) has accomplished the APEX Telescope Large Area Survey of the Galaxy (ATLASGAL), releasing the astonishing new imagery to mark the occasion. The survey covers the full area of the Galactic Plane as seen of the southern hemisphere, announcing it in submillimeter wavelengths for the initially time at any time.

The ATLASGAL data was collected by the Atacama Pathfinder EXperiment telescope (APEX), located 5,100 m (16,700 ft) above sea level on Chile’s Chajnantor Plateau. The effort was created to harness the APEX telescope’s capacity to provide a clear and detailed view of the distribution of dense gases only a few tens of degrees above absolute zero, located along the plane of the galaxy.

The project created use of the telescope’s Large Bolometer Camera (LABOCA), which measures incoming radiation by appearing at minute changes in temperature. It’s able-bodied to detect emmisions of the thick bands of dust which obscure the light of distant stars.

The imagery released nowadays shows the APEX data in red, with the background blue image taken at shorter wavelengths by NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope. The new information isn’t only visually astonishing, but can in addition assist scientists improve our knowledge of the Milky Way, combining the data with which of the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Planck satellite to learn additional of the inner Galaxy’s dense gases.

“ATLASGAL has allowed us to have a new and transformational appear at the dense interstellar medium of our galaxy, the Milky Way,” said the ESO’s Leonardo Testi. “The new release of the full survey opens up the possibility to mine this marvellous dataset for new discoveries.”

Speaking of formidable images of our home galaxy, check out this 20 gigapixel panorama released in 2014, via data of NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope.

Source: ESO

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