Technology

You can now explore the cosmos to “the edge of what can be seen” in new interactive map

For the first time ever, you can time journey by space to the edge of the seen universe from the consolation of your personal dwelling. Johns Hopkins University unveiled a first-of-its-kind map on Thursday that permits customers to scroll by 200,000 galaxies – “the span of the entire known cosmos.”

The map is a “slice of the universe” that mixes greater than 20 years of knowledge to showcase info beforehand solely seen by scientists with “pinpoint accuracy and sweeping beauty,” Johns Hopkins mentioned. 

In it, folks can see a colourful rainbow spectrum of dots representing the precise positions and colours of 200,000 galaxies, every full of their very own billions of stars and planets. The spectrum is so huge that it dates again 13.7 billion years to a vivid tie-dyed-esque line that exhibits an precise picture of the edge of the observable universe. Called the “Cosmic Microwave Background,” the picture is the first flash of mild emitted after the massive bang.

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Visualization of the map of the universe.

B. MÉNARD & N. SHTARKMAN


Johns Hopkins professor and map creator Brice Ménard mentioned that he was impressed by astronomy footage rising up, and “now it’s our time to create a new type of picture to inspire people.” 

“Astrophysicists around the world have been analyzing this data for years, leading to thousands of scientific papers and discoveries. But nobody took the time to create a map that is beautiful, scientifically accurate, and accessible to people who are not scientists,” he mentioned. “Our goal here is to show everybody what the universe really looks like.”

The knowledge included in the map was captured by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey, which makes use of a telescope in New Mexico to seize broad views of the evening sky. For 15 years, it captured nightly photographs in completely different positions to collect the essential knowledge.

“In this map, we are just a speck at the very bottom, just one pixel. And when I saw we, I mean our galaxy, the Milky Way which has billions of stars and planets,” Ménard mentioned. “We are used to seeing astronomical pictures showing one galaxy here, one galaxy there or perhaps a group of galaxies. But what this map shows is a very, very different scale.”

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