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How Many Stars are in the Sky?

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  • 1 year ago
If you want to spend a little time with one of the best pictures humanity has ever taken, you can do it at this website right here: http://www.spitzer.caltech.edu/glimpse360/aladin

The Spitzer mission ended this week after more than a decade of operation. When it first launched, in order to eliminate all sources of infrared radiation, the telescope had a store of liquid helium on board that kept it just two degrees warmer than interstellar space. Eventually, that helium ran out, and it kept doing its mission, but eventually its ability to take these amazing photos degraded and now the mission has ended.

Part of the reason it created this amazing image was to map out potential candidates for future examination by other telescopes, particularly the James Webb Space Telescope which will launch (fingers crossed) in March of 2021. It's also an IR telescope, so it will give us even better views of our galaxy (and others.)

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