Astronomy Picture of the Day

Stars of the Galactic Center

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Stars of the Galactic Center


The center
of our Milky Way Galaxy
is hidden
from the prying eyes of optical telescopes by clouds of
obscuring dust and gas.

But in this stunning vista,
the Spitzer Space Telescope's
infrared cameras, penetrate
much of the dust revealing
the stars of the crowded galactic center region.

A mosaic of many smaller snapshots, the detailed,
false-color image shows
older, cool stars in bluish hues.

Reddish glowing dust clouds are associated with
young, hot stars in stellar nurseries.

The galactic center
lies some 26,000 light-years away, toward the constellation

At that distance, this picture spans about 900 light-years.

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