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Milky way

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This picture, taken last night, could have been taken from anywhere else on Earth, as long as the observer had a clear sky and no light pollution from a nearby city. The colours are real but it's hard to see them with the naked eye because of its weak luminosity.

Each and every single star visible from earth is in the Milky Way, but its milky aspect comes from the combined light of three hundred billion stars undistinguishable from one another with the naked eye. The dark band in the middle, called the Great Rift, is made of huge clouds of interstellar dust blocking the light from the rest of the galaxy.

Creative Commons BY-NC-SAFrançois Guerraz