Clumps of Cold Stuff Across the Sky

Planck_planck11-001a_1024

planck_planck11-001a January 11th, 2011

Credit: ESA/NASA/JPL-Caltech

This map illustrates the numerous star-forming clouds, called cold cores, that Planck observed throughout our Milky Way galaxy. Planck, a European Space Agency mission with significant NASA participation, detected around 10,000 of these cores, thousands of which had never been seen before. Cold cores are chilly chambers of gas and dust where stellar embryos are just beginning to take shape. Some of the cold cores found by Planck are the coldest ever observed, as cold as just seven degrees above absolute zero, or minus 447 degrees Fahrenheit.

The blue data show the density of the cores, some of which are shaped more like clumps or filaments than spherical cores. Other missions, like the Herschel Space Observatory, can follow-up on the Planck discoveries, and see the structures in more detail.

Planck is an all-sky survey mission, scanning the sky at longer wavelengths of light, ranging from infrared to radio waves. Its ultimate goal is to measure the cosmic microwave background -- ancient radiation from the Big Bang that created our universe 13.7 billion years ago. But in the process of making these precise measurements, Planck is catching objects that lie in front of the cosmic microwave background -- objects like cold cores in our galaxy, in addition to distant galaxies.

About 1,000 of the cold cores observed by Planck are being released to the public Jan. 11, 2011, in the mission''s ""Early Release Compact Source Catalogue."" These are the best sources of the bunch, and the coldest.

Image Source: http://planck.ipac.caltech.edu/image/planck11-001a

Curator: NASA Planck Science Center, Pasadena, CA, USA

Image Use Policy: Public Domain

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Image Details

Image Type
Chart
Subject - Milky Way
Nebula » Type » Star Formation
Planck_planck11-001a_1280
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ID
planck11-001a
Subject Category
B.4.1.2  
Subject Name
Credits
ESA/NASA/JPL-Caltech
Lightyears
Redshift
Reference Url
http://planck.ipac.caltech.edu/image/planck11-001a
Type
Chart
Image Quality
Good
Distance Notes
Facility
Instrument
Color Assignment
Band
Bandpass
Central Wavelength
Start Time
Integration Time
Dataset ID
Notes
Coordinate Frame
Equinox
Reference Value
Reference Dimension
Reference Pixel
Scale
Rotation
Coordinate System Projection:
Quality
FITS Header
Notes
Creator (Curator)
NASA Planck Science Center
URL
http://planck.ipac.caltech.edu
Name
Email
Telephone
Address
1200 E. California Blvd.
City
Pasadena
State/Province
CA
Postal Code
91125
Country
USA
Rights
Public Domain
Publisher
Publisher ID
planck
Resource ID
Resource URL
/image/planck/planck11-001a
Related Resources
Metadata Date
2018-01-19T01:57:31Z
Metadata Version
1.2
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Detailed color mapping information coming soon...

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