As great as city life can be for people, there is something that is lost among the hustle and bustle of the constant lights and activity in the city - seeing the stars in the night sky.
Thankfully, scientists are still able to bring the breath-taking beauty of the night sky to people everywhere with the newest completion of the newest map of the Milky Way galaxy.
The image was provided by the APEX (Atacama Pathfinder EXpermiment) Telescope Large Area Survey of the Galaxy, also known as ATLASGAL. The new map covers an area of the sky 140 degrees long and three degrees wide, including most of the star formation regions in the southern part of the galaxy.
"ATLASGAL has allowed us to have a new and transformational look at the dense interstellar medium of our own galaxy, the Milky Way," said member of the ATLASGAL team Leonardo Testi. "The new release of the full survey opens up the possibility to mine this marvelous dataset for new discoveries."
ATLASGAL is located on the Chajnantor Plateau in Chile's Atacama region and was able to capture a new high quality picture of the dense gases composing the Milky Way Galaxy. It is a respected program with having almost 70 science papers already published and will continue to enhance the astronomical community with it's efforts to expand our view and knowledge of the galaxy we inhabit. The program is also one of the largest APEX programs of its' kind and it's success also comes from the high sensitivity from their equipment.
The map was captured on the Large Bolometer Camera, or LABOCA, which measures incoming radiation by detecting small temperature differences as well as emissions from the dust bands that might be obscuring the view of the lights.
This latest image from ATLASGAL is four times larger than it's first photo image contribution to the science world. The first image was also captured a segment of the Milky Way in 2009, revealing a large map of cloud dust in the galaxy.
The APEX Telescope has been provided scientists new insight to the depths of the universe for the last ten years. With this pace, who knows what else science will discover about the Milky Way?