Not the Ford Galaxy
June 5, 2008 8:42 PM   Subscribe

Five years and 800,000 images went into producing a 4 gigapixel mosaic image of the galactic plane, which when printed out is 180 feet long. But it has been made browser-sized by GLIMPSE, the Galactic Legacy Infrared Mid-Plane Survey Extraordinaire, the research group which, along with MIPSGAL, created the image: A Glimpse of the Milky Way.
posted by Kronos_to_Earth (13 comments total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
My, we are very very small.
posted by The White Hat at 8:53 PM on June 5, 2008

I'm already there, but thanks for the pictures for home!
posted by longsleeves at 8:54 PM on June 5, 2008

The GLIMPSE and MIPSGAL images were stitched together into a large mosaic that spans .... (390,000 x 6000 pixels)!

Let's load that bad boy up... where's the URL?
posted by tinkertown at 9:16 PM on June 5, 2008

Reminds me of gigapan (think it's been mentioned here before) (plug plug!)
posted by tss at 9:27 PM on June 5, 2008

Ah, here it is...
posted by tss at 9:39 PM on June 5, 2008

posted by sluglicker at 9:55 PM on June 5, 2008

When I see things like this about space and how it never ends it just blows my mind. Theres so much out there yet we can hardly make it off earth. Although it does give me peace that maybe one day I will be able to own my own planet.
posted by lilkeith07 at 10:41 PM on June 5, 2008

maybe one day I will be able to own my own planet.

Well, not THAT one. That one's mine. And the one next to it, too. Aaaaand...that other one.

Okay, I'm good.
posted by davejay at 10:54 PM on June 5, 2008

Very cool. Thanks for posting this. I played my own small part in making this happen. Back in the mid-80s I was a co-op student (i.e. intern) at NASA Ames Research center in Mountain View, CA. At that point, the Spitzer observatory was known as SIRTF (Space InfraRed Telescope Facility), and was based at Ames before being moved to JPL.

I was tasked with generating diagrams of the viewable sky for the telescope given the orbit, given the shape of the sun-shade and constraints on how close to the moon, earth, and sun that the telescope could point. I found out years later that my code had been extended by others, but was still known as the "Machak Code". So my digital DNA still lives on in the Spitzer Space Telescope.

I later went on to work on SOFIA, which is an aircraft-based Infrared observatory, due to be operational in 2010.
posted by mach at 11:10 PM on June 5, 2008 [1 favorite]

Chose my own spot and gradually zoomed in all the way. Expected to see an alien looking back at me. Was disappointed. Will try again next year.
posted by rongorongo at 2:34 AM on June 6, 2008

All these worlds are yours except New Jersey. Attempt no landings there. Christ, don't even visit.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:36 AM on June 6, 2008

I guess they're not gonna let people download the full-size panorama, are they? =/
posted by agress at 9:59 AM on June 6, 2008

Ohmygod, I'm totally humping my computer right now.

That is awesome. Thank you.
posted by tits mcgee at 11:58 AM on June 6, 2008

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