Map of 4.4 Million Galaxies

Map of 4.4 Million Galaxies

Using the Low-Frequency Array (LOFAR) radio, astronomers from Durham University collaborated with a team of international scientists to map more than a quarter of the northern sky. This map depicts a highly detailed radio image of over 4.4 million objects, as well as a very dynamic picture of our Universe.


The vast majority of these mapped objects are galaxies with massive black holes or young stars that are billions of light-years away.
Among the more unusual objects discovered are flared stars within the Milky Way and colliding groups of distant galaxies.
By far the most data from the LOFAR Two-metre Sky Survey has been released.
This data release contains nearly four million objects that are new discoveries at radio wavelengths, as well as approximately a million objects that have never been seen before with any telescope.

How did the map come to be?

Scientists used cutting-edge data processing techniques on high-performance computers all over Europe to process 3,500 hours of observations that took up 8 petabytes of disc space on nearly 20,000 laptops to create the map.


This data release is only 27 percent of the survey and it has been anticipated by scientists that as a result of this release many more scientific breakthroughs in the future are expected such as how black holes form as well as evolve, how the largest structures in the Universe grow, detailing the most spectacular phases in the life of the stars in the Milky Way Galaxy and the physics governing the formation of stars in distant galaxies.

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