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Space Science

Cosmic Microwave Background: Google Earth Style 36

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the find-the-aliens dept.
iDuck writes "Damien George, of Cambridge University, has created a 3D visualization of the latest data from the Planck mission. Using WebGL, it lets you spin and zoom a 3D model of the Cosmic Microwave Background, and select different wavelength bands."
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Cosmic Microwave Background: Google Earth Style

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  • Microwave (Score:3, Funny)

    by Tator Tot (1324235) on Wednesday March 27, 2013 @11:50AM (#43293573)
    It's funny how the Cosmic Microwave Background looks like the inside of our work microwave.
    • by Sulphur (1548251)

      It's funny how the Cosmic Microwave Background looks like the inside of our work microwave.

      There was a big bang in your microwave?

  • by hrieke (126185) on Wednesday March 27, 2013 @11:55AM (#43293623) Homepage

    Shouldn't it be like a star atlas, projected as if we're standing on the earth, looking out, vs. how it appears now; as a globe?

    • by femtobyte (710429) on Wednesday March 27, 2013 @12:05PM (#43293743)

      Especially for something that you can't see with your naked eyes, what makes a projection "wrong"? Do you also complain whenever you see a Mercator projection (or other sphere-projected-to-a-rectangle) map? The external spherical projection makes it easy to visualize large-angular-field structures along with small, which are awkward to view from "inside" (without really strong/funky perspective distortion).

      • by Trogre (513942)

        While I don't have a problem with this current map, I do get a bit worked up whenever I see a Mercator projection map of the Earth, simply because I know Greenland is not really bigger than Australia (in fact it's a little over 1/4 the size).

        And don't get me started on Antarctica.

    • by Baloroth (2370816)

      You can do either one, the former (star atlas) is just easier to display and work with, especially in 2 dimensions. Technically, however, the CMB is a map of the temperature of the surface of a sphere, so a globe is a better representation of the reality.

      • What does the surface of the sphere represent? Is that the edge of the universe?
        • by Baloroth (2370816)

          Sort of. It's the edge of the actually visible universe: it's light from the moment (well, it wasn't a moment exactly, but it was nearly instantaneous on the scale of the universe) when photons stopped being scattered by matter, and started free-flowing (this is known as the "surface of last scattering"). Since some points were slightly hotter than others, they produced slightly different distribution of photon energies. Black body radiation (which is what the background radiation is) follows a well-defined

  • Awesome. But I still can't find the missing lithium.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      God removed it. He needed it for his laptop's battery.

  • Every time I see a picture of the cosmic background radiation I can't help but be reminded of the patterns sunlight makes on the bottom of a swimming pool. How much of what we are seeing is a glimpse into the origin of the universe and how much is distortion introduced by various sources?
    • Next time you dive into a pool, look up. That is even more lissajous.
    • How much of what we are seeing is a glimpse into the origin of the universe and how much is distortion introduced by various sources?

      Answer that question and you'll get an invite to Stockholm.

  • This is a very nice visualisation especially all the other wavelengths too. Hoping it shows the membrane structure of the 'bulk' pre-universes wandering out there.
  • Bonus, it's not full of script-kiddie spyware that permeates 99.99% of websites these days!

    One gripe is the broken zooming direction. When gripping a sheet of paper to pull it closer one pulls back toward oneself. Touchscreen actions are done in this fashion.

    But instead, the scrollwheel action has been made more like dragging a slider of where you are on a larger sheet ... except there is no slider - ruining the effect.

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