WASHINGTON - Think Google Maps, in galactic proportions: A new Google experiment aims to combine data on the stars of the Milky Way with the company's mapping technology.
The result of "100,000 Stars" is a 3-D visualization for users that maps the galactic neighborhood. After taking the tour that puts the map into perspective, users can zoom in and out of the galaxy, finding information about specific stars or visiting the edge of the galaxy.
On the project's blog, Google's Aaron Koblin helps users understand the navigation.
"Zooming in further shows the relative location of the Oort cloud, the planetary orbits, and finally the Sun. Zooming out gives you some context for where we are in the Milky Way, although please keep in mind this view is an artist's rendition," Koblin writes.
The data about the galaxy, the location of the stars and their individual information was provided by NASA and the European Space Agency.
The project seems to works best in Google's Chrome browser.
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