Friday, June 09, 2006

Light years away

How beautiful! The stars and dust of Andromeda, captured by the Spitzer infrared camera array.

"The Andromeda galaxy, also known by astronomers as Messier 31, is located 2.5 million light-years away in the constellation Andromeda. It is the closest major galaxy to the Milky Way, making it the ideal specimen for carefully examining the nature of galaxies. On a clear, dark night, the galaxy can be spotted with the naked eye as a fuzzy blob. Andromeda spans about 260,000 light-years, which means that a light beam would take 260,000 years to travel from one end of the galaxy to the other.

By comparison, the Milky Way is about 100,000 light-years across. When viewed from Earth, Andromeda occupies a portion of the sky equivalent to seven full moons."

Some really big numbers and incredible age. Awesome, in a very real way, (not the slang expression :)).

Andromeda Adrift in Sea of Dust

The Three Faces of Andromeda

The two links below take some time to load, even with high-speed broadband, so patience is required. :D

Gorgeous! :D

Fabulous! :D

No comments: