For the first time, scientists have imaged 300,000 galaxies using a telescope deep in the Australian outback, colouring the images to make the radiowaves visible to humans.
The fiery band across the sky is our home galaxy, the Milky Way, and the surrounding dots are glimpses of other galaxies. The survey – called the GaLactic and Extragalactic All-sky MWA, or Gleam for short – has picked up radio waves that were emitted from stars up to billions of years ago.
The scientists will use this data to investigate what happens when clusters of galaxies collide. "We're also able to see the remnants of explosions from the most ancient stars in our galaxy, and find the first and last gasps of supermassive black holes," says Natasha Hurley-Walker, an astronomer at Curtin University and the International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research in Australia, who works on the survey.
Here's what the night sky looks like beyond the visible spectrum: use the slider below to view the night sky from X-ray frequencies right the way down to radio frequencies.
The team's most recent research from Gleam is published in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.