Science | Space | Video

Maybe The Most Comprehensive Map In The Universe: VIDEO


The Apache Point Observatory in New Mexico, which uses something called "drift scanning" to document the vastness of the sky, has been snapping pictures of the heavens for twelve years as part of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. The Survey's findings have been compiled into a 3D map of space, picturing 200 million galaxies and "7 billion years worth of cosmic movement." The map will get bigger, soon.

The data from the survey, and the map itself, is largely impenetrable to non-specialists. Happily, somebody involved in the project has produced a video tour of the map as it exists today. AFTER THE JUMP, take a tour of what might be the most comprehensive map in the universe. It's certainly the most comprehensive map in our corner of it.


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  1. Honestly, No "god" could have done this!

    Posted by: Guest | Aug 19, 2012 10:16:37 AM

  2. That's it. We're fleas.

    Posted by: Lonewolfen | Aug 19, 2012 1:02:20 PM

  3. Awesome project that the SDSS team are doing. If they can ever get the Webb ST up (due in 2018) then we'll be able to see to the beginnings of the universe.

    Posted by: Henry Holland | Aug 19, 2012 1:44:52 PM

  4. I literally gasped at the vastness of seeing this way. Incredible work, can't wait to see what 2018 brings once the Webb ST are up.

    Posted by: RONTEX | Aug 19, 2012 2:08:05 PM

  5. One of the most amazing things ever.

    Posted by: wonderer | Aug 19, 2012 3:05:09 PM

  6. To be fair, it's not really a 3D map of space, 3D map of a slice of spacetime.

    Most of the objects whose light reaches us are not at those locations any more.

    Posted by: Randy | Aug 19, 2012 3:23:25 PM

  7. *but is a 3D map of a slice....
    (sometimes it would be nice to edit a comment)

    Posted by: Randy | Aug 19, 2012 3:25:28 PM

  8. I can see the Tree of Life! Where is Asgard?

    Posted by: allan | Aug 19, 2012 3:34:34 PM

  9. When we speak about women..

    Posted by: Christian Louboutin replica | Aug 19, 2012 11:42:41 PM

  10. This little glimpse at the size and splendor of the universe convinces me even more that ALL the earthly man created religions are just childish nonsense.

    Posted by: andrew | Aug 20, 2012 12:34:11 AM

  11. I've done a fair amount of lay reading about cosmology and this is the best thing I've seen to get a sense of how much is really out their. And these are galaxies!

    Posted by: David R. | Aug 20, 2012 12:35:56 AM

  12. The 'strings' seem to disappear in a three dimensional view.

    Posted by: Bill Perdue | Aug 20, 2012 5:41:18 AM

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