This mind-blowing photo of the central parts of the Milky Way was obtained with the VISTA survey telescope at ESO’s Paranal Observatory in Chile. The enormous picture showing 84 million stars contains nine billion pixels and measures 108 500 x 81 500 pixels. If printed, it would be approximately 30-feet wide and 23-feet tall. [Read more...]

It was created by combining thousands of individual images from VISTA, taken through three different infrared filters, into a single monumental mosaic. According to European Southern Observatory, VISTA has a camera sensitive to infrared light it can see through much of the dust blocking the view for optical telescopes, although many more opaque dust filaments still show up well in this picture.

Try out this zoom tool to see how big this picture really is.

Try out this zoom tool to see how big this picture really is.