ECKHARD SLAWIK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ECKHARD SLAWIK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Central Milky Way. Optical image of the central region of the Milky Way, looking towards the centre of our galaxy. North is at top. The Milky Way is the band of light crossing the sky composed of the millions of stars in the plane of our galaxy. Dark dust lanes are seen obscuring the light from stars behind them. The zodiacal constellation Scorpius, the scorpion, is at centre left. Its brightest star is the red giant Antares (Alpha Scorpii), at upper left. The two bright blue stars at upper right are Zubeneschamali (Beta Librae, upper) and Zubenelgenubi (Alpha Librae, lower) in the constellation Libra.
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