Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Worldwide Telescope Brings Space Exploration to Earth

15.05.2008
Thanks in part to a Johns Hopkins University astrophysicist, the final frontier got a bit closer today with the launch of a new application that allows people to easily explore the night sky from their own computers.

WorldWide Telescope is a Web application produced by Microsoft Corp. that brings together imagery from the best ground- and space-based telescopes across the world, allowing seamless panning and zooming across the heavens. It’s free at http://www.worldwidetelescope.com

“WorldWide Telescope allows everyone to browse through the solar system, our galaxy and beyond with just a few clicks of a mouse. It puts the universe right there at your fingertips,” Johns Hopkins’ Alexander Szalay said.

WorldWide Telescope was made possible in part by Szalay's long collaboration with Microsoft’s Jim Gray on the development of large-scale, high performance online databases such as SkyServer and the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. Szalay is Alumni Centennial Professor of Astronomy in the Henry A. Rowland Department of Physics and Astronomy at Johns Hopkins. Gray, a senior Microsoft manager and database pioneer to whom the project has been dedicated, disappeared during a 2007 boat trip and was never found.

A blend of software and Web 2.0 services created with the Microsoft high performance Visual Experience Engine, WorldWide Telescope stitches together terabytes of high-resolution images of celestial bodies, and displays them in a way that relates to their actual position in the sky. People can browse at will or take advantage of guided tours of the sky hosted by astronomers and educators at major universities and planetariums.

But the service goes well beyond the simple browsing of images. Users can choose which telescope they want to look through, including Hubble, Chandra, Spitzer or others. They can view the locations of planets in the night sky — in the past, present or future. They can view the universe through different wavelengths of light to reveal hidden structures in other parts of the galaxy. Taken as a whole, the application provides a top-to-bottom view of the science of astronomy.

“WorldWide Telescope brings to life a dream that many of us at Microsoft Research have pursued for years, and we are proud to release this as a free service to anyone who wants to explore the universe,” said Curtis Wong, manager of Microsoft’s Next Media Research Group. “Where is Saturn in the sky, in relation to the moon? Does the Milky Way really have a supermassive black hole in the center of the galaxy? With (WorldWide Telescope), you can discover the answers for yourself.”

Microsoft Research has formed close ties with members of the academic, education, and scientific communities to make WorldWide Telescope a reality. More than 10 organizations collaborated with Microsoft Research to provide the imagery, provided feedback on the application from a scientific point of view, and help turn WorldWide Telescope into a rich learning application.

Szalay, who is also a professor of computer science at Johns Hopkins, worked with Gray of Microsoft for nearly a decade on a variety of projects, including SkyServer. In addition, Szalay’s group at Johns Hopkins built the multi-terabyte archive for the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (known as the “Cosmic Genome Project”) and also played a major role in the National Virtual Observatory, an alliance to construct a system connecting all astronomy data in the world.

Lisa De Nike | newswise
Further information:
http://www.worldwidetelescope.com
http://www.jhu.edu

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht Tune your radio: galaxies sing while forming stars
21.02.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Radioastronomie

nachricht Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms
17.02.2017 | Universität Konstanz

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Impacts of mass coral die-off on Indian Ocean reefs revealed

21.02.2017 | Earth Sciences

Novel breast tomosynthesis technique reduces screening recall rate

21.02.2017 | Medical Engineering

Use your Voice – and Smart Homes will “LISTEN”

21.02.2017 | Trade Fair News

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>