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Star Map in Galactic Perspective

(Scroll down to see the map. This is an adventure in progress.) Star Atlas in Galactic Perspective and Comments on Star Atlas in Galactic Perspective. Installed 25 Sept 2001 - Latest Update 17 Jul 2012. New or changed text is in bold. Use your web browser's vertical and horizontal scrolling functions to move around on the image Notes have been moved to below the map.

The galactic coordinates now in use are not the same that were used on the 1972 map. In each of the polar plots below a line for LII = 0 deg is shown.

To see a track for Halley's Comet in it's 12 BC apparition, overlaid on this polar plot, goto halley12.htm. The Star Map above is a colorized version of a pen and ink 1972 Star Atlas by R.S. Fritzius The two-color Milky Way representation and other cartographic details are based on Antonn Becvr's Atlas of the Heavens - Atlas Coeli 1950.0 Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences - 1958. The outlines of the Milky Way are according to: A. Pannekoek, Die nrdliche Milchstrasse (Leiden, 1920); A. Pannekoek, Die sdliche Milchstrasse (Lembang, 1929). The 1972 star atlas has an uncertain amount of eyeball subjectivity as to star magnitudes and positions. The same can be said with regard to the positions of portions of the equatorial grid itself. Some of these magnitude and position errors are being reduced on this map. Also, I estimate that only about 60 percent of the stars brighter than mag 3.5 actually made it onto the original star atlas. The missing stars are gradually being installed. A "post 1958" galactic-coordinates grid is gradually being added to the map. It's lines will not completely straight because of the equatorial lines position errors mentioned above. The black galactic equator corresponds to Newcomb's pole. The post-1958 galactic equator (shown in black) is tilted about 1.5 degrees with respect to the pre-1958 galactic equator (shown in blue). They coincide at 0 and 180 degrees galactic longitude. Galaxy Number Density contours are being installed in the polar maps. The units for these densities are in galaxies per square degree. The patterns are based on the galaxies plotted in Becvr's Atlas of the Heavens. The density contours shown are not locked in stone. By sliding the analysis grid(*) around, different (but related) families of curves would be generated. Contour lines are eyeball generated. (*) Each bin in the grid is 3.16 degrees by 3.16 degrees square.

Outlines of well known astronomical images that are shown on the map
The Galactic Center - Naval Research Laboratory Radio Image - Center The Annotated Galactic Center - Astronomy Picture of the Day - November 11, 1997 - Center. The Crab Nebula and Geminga in Gamma Rays - Left and Right edges - Caution! There are about 16 DEGREES of angular separation between these two objects.

Highlights (All coordinates Epoch 1950.)

Barnard's Star, in Ophiuchus, R.A. 17h 55m DEC +04 33 Gamma-Ray Burst 990510, in Chamaelon, R.A. 13h 33m DEC -80d 14.5m Lunar South Celestal Pole (just North of the Large Magellanic Cloud). Supernova 1987a(*), in Large Magellanic Cloud, R.A. 05h 36m DEC -69d 18m Supernova 2006gy, in Perseus, R.A. 03h 14m DEC +41d 13m The constellation Hydra, which extends some 90 degrees across the heavens (Galactic longitude 330 to 220, and 35 degrees north of the galactic equator) seems to be laid out (on purpose) parallel to the Milky Way. Other constellations which follow suit would include Centaurus, Orion, and Canis Major. Cygnus and Aquila are flying in the same direction parallel to the galactic plane.

Related Web Pages

NASA - New Map of Milky Way Reveals Millions of Unseen Objects Multiwavelength Milky Way Science Users - NASA, Goddard Space Flight Center IRAS/COBE Galactic Dust - Cool Cosmos Informal Education Convert Equatorial to Galactic Coordinates Send comments/questions to Bob Fritzius at fritzius@bellsouth.net Home | Previous | Back to Fun Stuff | Next Top