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How Big is Space

Posted by Diego Fonstad
Diego Fonstad
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on Sunday, 25 March 2012
in Images that speak for themselves

Teachable Moment: Sometimes a static drawing... at scale... is more powerful than a dynamic image or movie.  This is a great graphic for teaching the magnitude of Space.

And here at Future we have a hard time thinking of a question bigger than: how big is space?

So, we set about trying to illustrate it.

Be warned: the resulting picture is big. Very big.

SEE THE GRAPHIC IN ITS FULL GLORY

In fact, it is so large that we could not squeeze it all on to one image in Photoshop. Instead, we had to create several sections and stitch them together for you.

Printed out, the graphic spans 27 pages of A4 paper.

But even at this size we only managed to get to the edge of our Solar System – known as the heliosphere.

Yet even within this relatively small corner of space, there is a lot packed in there.

What is the most distant man-made object? What is the farthest travelled by a human being? What is the farthest travelled by a piece of Lego? And perhaps most importantly – how long would these journeys take if you were a passenger on the Starship Enterprise?

Scroll (and scroll... and scroll) through our monster graphic to explore our cosmic neighbourhood.

And if you want to check out the data we used to construct it, you can find it here.

References: http://www.bbc.com/future/bespoke/space_infographic

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Tags: Astronomy
Diego Fonstad has not set their biography yet

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