A Three-Dimensional Map of The Sky (VIDEO)
August 8, 2012 2 Comments
The Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS-III) has released the largest three-dimensional map of massive galaxies and distant black holes ever created. The map pinpoints the locations and distances of over a million galaxies. It covers a total volume equivalent to that of a cube four billion light-years on a side.
There are close to 400,000 galaxies in the animation, which places zoomed-in images of nearby galaxies at the positions of more distant galaxies mapped by the SDSS. With such a map, scientists can retrace the history of the universe over the last six billion years. With that type of history, they believe they can get better estimates for how much of the universe is made up of dark matter, and dark energy, the mysterious force that drives the accelerating expansion of the universe.
“Dark matter and dark energy are two of the greatest mysteries of our time,” said David Schlegel of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, the principal investigator of BOSS. “We hope that our new map of the universe can help someone solve the mystery.”