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August 24, 2007

Explore the Sky in Google Earth

Google Earth goes beyond its initial purpose and has a new feature that lets you explore the sky. The latest version (Google Earth 4.2) brings what could've been a separate program for rendering the sky, like Stellarium.

After launching the application, click on the black rounded icon from the toolbar and switch to the sky mode. Google Earth shows the sky from the current location and becomes a virtual telescope for amateur stargazers.

"This easy-to-use tool enables all Earth users to view and navigate through 100 million individual stars and 200 million galaxies. High resolution imagery and informative overlays create a unique playground for visualizing and learning about space," explains the press release.

The layers include a lot of interesting information about stars, constellations, galaxies, images from the Hubble Space Telescope.

"Never before has a roadmap of the entire sky been made so readily available. Anyone interested in exploring the wonders of our universe can quickly see where the stunning objects photographed by Hubble actually dwell in the heavens. Sky in Google Earth will foster and initiate new understanding of the universe by bringing it to everyone's home computer," said Dr. Carol Christian from the Space Telescope Science Institute.

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