Watch a video about the Milky Way

Canadian Heritage Information Network

© Canadian Heritage Information Network, 2003.


One of the most spectacular sights on a clear dark night is the band of light called the Milky Way that sweeps across our sky. As spectacular as this view is, it represents only a small portion of the nearly 200 billion stars estimated to make up our galactic homeland. If we could look down on our galaxy from a distance of about 30 million light years it might look like look this Gemini image of the spiral Galaxy called M74 in the constellation of Pisces. If this were our galaxy, our sun would be located about two-thirds of the way out from the center in a region called the Perseus arm.

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