A stunning set of gigantic gigapixel montaged photographs of our Milky Way Galaxy can be zoomed in to view greatly defined details as never before.
The European Southern Observatory (ESO) in Chile is presenting these beautiful huge images through their Gigagalaxy Zoom project. You can click on areas, and zoom into the rich and deep montages.
To create this stunning, 340 megapixel true-color mosaic of the Galactic Center region, Stéphane Guisard assembled about 1200 individual images, totaling more than 200 hours of exposure time.
Collected over 29 nights, with an amateur telescope, during his free time, after working during the day at Paranal,
the 34 by 20 degree image shows the region spanning the sky from the constellation of Sagittarius (the Archer) to Scorpius (the Scorpion).
“The image was obtained from Cerro Paranal, home of ESO’s Very Large Telescope,
by observing with a 10-cm Takahashi FSQ106Ed f/3.6 telescope and a SBIG STL CCD camera,
using a NJP160 mount. The images were collected through three different filters (B, V and R) and then stitched together.
This mosaic was assembled from 52 different sky fields made from about 1200 individual images totalling 200 hours exposure time, with the final image having a size of 24 403 x 13 973 pixels.”
The cool part of viewing this, is that you can go to a Full Screen View to cover your entire monitor and then zoom in and ‘hand’ around the image which goes really deep.
Tips for viewing the Gigagalaxy Milky Way photo:
- Click on the Full Screen View (lower right hand button)
- Wait for the ‘Press ESC’ notice to fade away, then…
- Click on the ‘Click to Activate’ bar to get control in the Full Screen View, then
- Use the + and – buttons (lower left) to get the zoom
- On some internet connections you must wait a few moments for the resolution to reach maximum