Source: ESO Photo Release eso1242
VISTA gigapixel mosaic of the central parts of the Milky Way.
Image credits:ESO/VVV Consortium
Acknowledgement: Ignacio Toledo, Martin Kornmesser
Using a whopping nine-gigapixel image from the VISTA infrared survey telescope at ESO’s Paranal Observatory, an international team of astronomers has created a catalogue of more than 84 million stars in the central parts of the Milky Way. This gigantic dataset contains more than ten times more stars than previous studies and is a major step forward for the understanding of our home galaxy. The image gives viewers an incredible, zoomable view of the central part of our galaxy. It is so large that, if printed with the resolution of a typical book, it would be 9 metres long and 7 metres tall. (read more)