The image shows the outline of our Galaxy, the Milky Way, and of its neighbouring Magellanic Clouds. The map is based on housekeeping data from ESA’s Gaia satellite, and it indicates the total number of stars detected every second in each of the satellite's fields of view. Brighter regions indicate higher concentrations of stars, while darker regions correspond to patches of the sky where fewer stars are observed. For more information visit Counting stars with Gaia. An annotated version of the map, on which some globular clusters are indicated, is available from http://www.esa.int/spaceinimages/Images/2015/07/Stellar_density_map_-_annotated . These Images were released on 3 July 2015.
The image was prepared by Edmund Serpell, a Gaia Operations Engineer working in the Mission Operations Centre at ESA’s European Space Operations Centre in Darmstadt, Germany.
Download high resolution version of the image (PNG, 900.71 KB)
Page last updated: 30 May 2018