Current Issue
May 2014 magazine cover
Subscribe

Save 81% off the newsstand price!

Keeping you current

Fly Through a Gigantic 3D Model of the Universe

Reminiscent of the early 90's Windows screensaver that whisked you through space with a field of zooming stars, the Sloan Digital Sky Survey's A Flight Through the Universe takes you on a trip around the universe.

In an unintentional nod to the early 90′s Windows screensaver that whisked you through space with a field of zooming stars, the Sloan Digital Sky Survey’s A Flight Through the Universe takes you on a trip around the universe. There is, however, one huge difference between the gloriously pixelated screensaver and the Sloan video: these stars are real.

The video was put together as part of the Sloan survey’s attempts to build a full three-dimensional map of the universe. The map currently includes 540,000 galaxies (of which 400,000 appear in this video). By the end of the 13 year project, the organization hopes to “measure the positions of 1.5 million massive galaxies over the past six billion years of cosmic time, as well as 160,000 quasars — giant black holes actively feeding on stars and gas — from as long ago as 12 billion years in the past.”

 

More from Smithsonian.com:

Dark Energy: The Biggest Mystery in the Universe

The Coldest Place in the Universe

A Guided Tour of the Universe

Tags
About Colin Schultz
Colin Schultz

Colin Schultz is a freelance science writer and editor based in Toronto, Canada. He blogs for Smart News and contributes to the American Geophysical Union. He has a B.Sc. in physical science and philosophy, and a M.A. in journalism.

Read more from this author |

Comment on this Story

comments powered by Disqus