JERRY LODRIGUSS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JERRY LODRIGUSS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Milky Way. This is the band of stars (running from lower right to upper left) in the night sky. It is a view of our own spiral galaxy from the inside, here looking towards the galactic centre in the constellation of Sagittarius. Our galaxy contains over 100 billion stars. It also contains clouds of dust and gas (nebulae), which are the red, brown and black patches seen in the sky. Halley's Comet is seen at lower left. Comets are astronomical bodies found within the solar system, and are relatively close by, unlike the much more distant stars and nebulae. Halley's Comet last passed by the Earth in 1986, and will return some 76 years later.
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