2MASS PROJECT / NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY 2MASS PROJECT / NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Milky Way. Infrared composite image of the entire sky in Aitoff projection, showing almost 100 million stars. Most prominent is the high density of stars along the disk of our own spiral galaxy, the Milky Way (horizontally across centre). Infrared can peer through the dense dust that obscures millions of stars from sight at visible wavelengths. The Large and Small Magellanic Clouds (lower right) are companion galaxies to the Milky Way. These images were made as part of the Two Micron All Sky Survey (2MASS) project using ground-based telescopes in the USA and in Chile.
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