The Known Universe

wakarimasen

Journeyed there and back again
#1
A vid of the known universe, mapped with the latest data.
I like to think my imagination is vast. But I reckon existence has got us all licked...
Worth keeping in mind that this is really just the baryonic matter constituent of the universe too.. which mathematically only account for about 4.6% of its substance. (http://map.gsfc.nasa.gov/universe/uni_matter.html)
That's over 95% of the universe unaccounted for. How can we sleep at night? (answer- because we can't see the stars anymore).
 

Boreas

Journeyed there and back again
Staff member
#2
Nice vid. You can also find similar videos/images depicting the scale of the universe using orders of magnitude (10^x). As an addendum, here is a map of the solar system that this guy developed to be able to explain scale to his child. I have spent some time exploring the different features of this map. It is very appositely named as: A Tediously Accurate Map of the Solar System. You realise how difficult it is to comprehend empty space and the distances between our planets in the just the miniature domain of our Solar System.

I also found a fantastic 3D map of known Stars in the relatively near vicinity of Sol. Will post that later.

P.s. (to a Staff Member): The super-/sub-script BB Code doesn't seem to work when I tried it for 10^x.
 

Boreas

Journeyed there and back again
Staff member
#4
Just spent 2/3 of my lunch break scrolling through that. Thanks, I think ..
There's a little icon on the bottom right-hand corner that automatically scrolls through the map at the speed of light (adjusted for scale). It is sooooo slow.

The diameter of our Solar System (if you define it as a spherical volume affected by the Sun's gravitational pull) is close to two light years. One light year is the distance from Sol to a little beyond the Oort Cloud (which itself lies a fair long-long-long distance beyond the orbit of Pluto - at around 80% of a light year - where the majority of the asteroids lie and from whence our comets originate). The outer edge of the Oort Cloud would be where the gravitational effect of our Sun fades. So, for light originating from Sol to reach the end of its gravitational influence would take almost 10 months, whereas it only needs 8 minutes to reach Earth. It's hard to accept the scale.
 
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atheling

A Poet of the Khaiem
#6
A vid of the known universe, mapped with the latest data.
I like to think my imagination is vast. But I reckon existence has got us all licked...
Worth keeping in mind that this is really just the baryonic matter constituent of the universe too.. which mathematically only account for about 4.6% of its substance. (http://map.gsfc.nasa.gov/universe/uni_matter.html)
That's over 95% of the universe unaccounted for. How can we sleep at night? (answer- because we can't see the stars anymore).
groooooovy
 

Griffin

Journeyed there and back again
#7
I love this kind of thing. Yet the scale of the thing is still beyond our imagination. Certainly when the camerapoint is moving at a speed way above lightspeed which cripples any real sense of just how big our known universe is. Love you explanation about the solar system and the link to the pixelspace thingy, @Boreas, I'm quite the sucker for this kind of stuff.
 

Boreas

Journeyed there and back again
Staff member
#8
This is the video that I meant when I was taking about scales (viz. orders of magnitude). It's a short educational movie from 1977 called "Powers of Ten".


This is an updated video I found with better graphics (and "The Matrix" music), but not as good, overall, as the older video.


Finally, a video which begins charting scale at the Planck length (inseparable with Planck time), the infinitesimal measure beyond which distance and time seem to become meaningless in the fabric of our universe (taken as 4 dimensions). There's quite a bit more information/examples in this presentation that helps place things in a more understandable perspective (at least, in the beginning).


Towards the end of the last video, it mentions the Great Attractor, which is a phenomenon used in the science fiction works of Stephen Baxter in his Xeelee books, which explore a very pessimistic fate of mankind whilst charting the scope of our whole universe till the end of time to its eventual cold-death. One of the antagonists (dark matter entities, as opposed to the Xeelee, who are master manipulators of baryonic matter) hurl an entire galaxy at it as a weapon (imagine the time scales we're taking about). Truly, cosmic space opera. The only other writer who's explored such magnitudes (the scope of the whole universe as was known at the time) in some detail was Olaf Stapledon in the 1930s! Most of the main sequence Xeelee books and short stories were written in the early 1990s, a full decade before the ideas of dark matter and dark energy started to infuse the popular subconscious (though they've been around as theoretical ideas since the 1930s, and more seriously since the 1970s).
 

Boreas

Journeyed there and back again
Staff member
#9
Here it is: 100,000 Stars. Quite a gorgeous stellar map considering it's been created for the Google Chrome browser and is available to the public for free.
 

Griffin

Journeyed there and back again
#10
Here it is: 100,000 Stars. Quite a gorgeous stellar map considering it's been created for the Google Chrome browser and is available to the public for free.
I've seen this before: it is just mindboggling! I become unrestfull when I see this.

I'll take a look at those videos later, but they look interesting!
 

Boreas

Journeyed there and back again
Staff member
#11
The largest ever picture by NASA of the Andromeda Galaxy. The composite image is over 4 gigabytes large (1.5 billion pixels), and this video presents a quick glimpse of the detail from a small section of the M31 galaxy.
 

Boreas

Journeyed there and back again
Staff member
#13
About 18 more minutes before the video starts showing a hopefully live feed of the asteroid/comet passing by Earth today. From the above link. I hope the quality of the video is good.
 

Boreas

Journeyed there and back again
Staff member
#14
As an addendum to the previously posted "A Tediously Accurate Map of the Solar System", here is a beautiful video that lets you travel at the speed of light. Be humbled by the vastness of our itty-bitty little Solar System!
 
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Boreas

Journeyed there and back again
Staff member
#15
Wow, spectacular images/video of Sol from the satellite SDO's 5-year journey: