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Astronomers Release The Largest Color Image Of The Sky Ever Made

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posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 10:54 AM
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This is the most detailed digital picture of the universe ever produced.

Simply extraordinary!




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Today, the Sloan Digital Sky Survey-III (SDSS-III) is releasing the largest digital color
image of the sky ever made, and its free to all. The image has been put together
over the last decade from millions of 2.8-megapixel images, thus creating a color
image of more than a trillion pixels. This terapixel image is so big and detailed that
one would need 500,000 high-definition TVs to view it at its full resolution. "This
image provides opportunities for many new scientific discoveries in the years to
come," exclaims Bob Nichol, a professor at the University of Portsmouth and
Scientific Spokesperson for the SDSS-III collaboration.

The new image is at the heart of new data being released by the SDSS-III
collaboration at 217th American Astronomical Society meeting in Seattle. This new
SDSS-III data release, along with the previous data releases that it builds upon,
gives astronomers the most comprehensive view of the night sky ever made. SDSS
data have already been used to discover nearly half a billion astronomical objects,
including asteroids, stars, galaxies and distant quasars. The latest, most precise
positions, colors and shapes for all these objects are also being released today.
"This is one of the biggest bounties in the history of science,"



All of the imaging data for SDSS-III DR8 visualized. For the first half of the zoom, you are seeing the calibrated pixels; for the second half, the calibrated catalog.
Publication credit: David W. Hogg, Michael Blanton, and the SDSS-III Collaboration.
url

The image replaces an image that is over 50 years old, yet astromonmers
still use today. 1950 Palomar Sky Survey

The AAS press release and supplementary material and links.

•AAS press release
Links to the two associated arXiv e-Print papers describing DR8 and the SDSS-III project:
sdss3.files.wordpress.com...

arxiv.org...
arxiv.org...

The images used in the press release (with and without labels
sdss3.wordpress.com...
edit on 12-1-2011 by burntheships because: (no reason given)




posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 10:57 AM
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Interresting...i guess...you could at least provide some info on the subject,not just links...



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 11:14 AM
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reply to post by jpsdasnake
 


You caught the post as it was in editing.


Thanks, hope you enjoy it.



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 11:40 AM
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reply to post by burntheships
 


The more we learn just shows how much more farther we need to go.
Now if we can only develop the technology to actually get out there instead of just window shopping.

I hate window shopping.



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 11:48 AM
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reply to post by SLAYER69
 


It does make you want to fly away

It also makes me feel very small!

Its times like these I am refreshed by the knowledge that ther is a grand scale universe out there!



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 03:26 PM
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reply to post by burntheships
 


The new image is at the heart of new data being released by the SDSS-III
collaboration at 217th American Astronomical Society meeting in Seattle.

The Seattle science center has a laser dome (laser light shows to music), Imax theater and a planetarium. Maybe they could combine all three and come up with a holographic Universal projection using this information, with music of coarse. That would be worth seeing.

Seattle Science Center



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 04:45 PM
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Originally posted by burntheships
The image replaces an image that is over 50 years old, yet astromonmers
still use today. 1950 Palomar Sky Survey

Actually most astronomers use POSSII in place of POSSI already, but more importantly, POSSII still covers much more of the sky than SDSSIII. SDSSIII has far more resolution, but is less complete in terms of sky coverage. POSSII has basically the whole sky covered, this is the coverage for SDSSIII so far:
www.sdss3.org...
That said, SDSSIII is far superior in the areas that it does cover and in those areas it will essentially replace POSS except as an archived source of information when one needs to see where a particular star or object was in the past.



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 07:06 PM
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reply to post by Devino
 


That would be awesome.
Next time I am in Seattle - Thanks for this tip!



posted on Jan, 13 2011 @ 02:14 AM
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reply to post by burntheships
 
Thanks for the info. I don't know where I'm going to put 500,000 HDTVs though, even if I could afford them (joking).

But seriously this is good stuff. I noticed the Google Earth-sky application uses SDSS imagery so we all have access to it via Google Earth, though I don't know what resolution is in Google Earth, it may or may not have the full resolution?

I also noted that an ATS thread pointed out that Arcturus looked funky on Google sky where the imagery said SDSS. I'm not sure why but I'm guessing Arcturus is such a bright star, they had to block it out to get imagery of stars around it which is why it looks so funky?

And making this available to everyone for free is awesome!



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