Our magnificent Milky Way Galaxy sprawls across this
ambitious all-sky panorama.
In fact, at 800 million pixels the full resolution mosaic strives
to show all the stars the eye can see in planet Earth's night sky.
Part of ESO's
Project, the mosaicked images were recorded over several months of
2008 and 2009 at exceptional astronomical sites;
the Atacama Desert in the southern hemisphere
and the Canary Islands in the northern hemisphere.
Also capturing bright
planets and even a comet, the individual frames
were stitched together and mapped
into a single, flat, apparently seamless
180 degree view.
The final result is oriented so the plane of our galaxy
runs horizontally through the middle with the bulging
Galactic Center at image center.
Below and left of center are the Milky Way's satellite galaxies,
the Magellanic Clouds.
Credit: ESO /
Serge Brunier, Frederic Tapissier -