NASA releases all WISE telescope mission images

NASA has released a catalog of more than 560 million stars, galaxies, and asteroids that have been imaged over the last several years. Many of the photos that have been released have never been seen before. The image catalog has more than 18,000 images that were taken using the Wide-field Survey Explorer or WISE infrared space telescope. I love these kinds of images.

Using the WISE telescope scientists have been able to discover all kinds of celestial bodies including Y dwarf brown stars, which are the dimmest in the brown dwarf star family. The stars are particularly hard to discover because they are cold. In fact, one such star discovered last year had a temperature of only about 80°F compared to the 10,000°F of our sun.

The WISE telescope is also being used to discover and learn more about asteroids that come close to the earth. The telescope launched on December 14, 2009 and spent all of 2010 searching the night sky using four infrared wavelengths that allow it to capture objects that would be too dim to register otherwise. The telescope collected over 2.7 million images and 15 trillion bytes of data that have been an analysis ever since.

[via Wired]