This infrared image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows the double-ringed galaxy Messier 94. Just outside the bright core, a burning ring of star formation glows brightly in the light of warm interstellar dust. Encircling it all is the faint blue glow of starlight forming what was long taken to be an outer ring of stars, but may not be a ring at all.
May 16th, 2013
This initial release of the AstroPix website is an early preview beta. Note that it does not reflect the final feature set and offers only a subset of the intended content. Expect to see numerous changes to site functionality, expanded content, and more complete documentation in the coming months.
Welcome to a new way to explore and share the universe! AstroPix offers access to the collected image libraries of a variety of the leading astronomical observatories under a single unified interface. Assets will include a full range of astronomical observations, illustrations, charts, and photographs spanning the field of Astronomy.
The site will automatically pull in the latest imagery as soon as it becomes available. Initial partners include Spitzer, Chandra, Hubble, Galex, WISE, and ESO, with more coming soon.
All of the AstroPix imagery is richly tagged with metadata describing the content, from titles and captions to astronomical facilities and coordinates. It employs the Astronomy Visualization Metadata (AVM) standard, which allows both general information (title, caption, credit, etc.) as astronomy-specific data (observations, coordinates, etc.) to be embedded directly into the images. Documentation on AVM can be found at the Virtual Astronomy Multimedia Project.