Welcome to Milky Way project!

Eagle Nebula

The Milky Way Project aims to sort and measure our galaxy, the Milky Way. Initially we're asking you to help us find and draw bubbles in beautiful infrared data from the Spitzer Space Telescope.

Understanding the cold, dusty material that we see in these images, helps scientists to learn how stars form and how our galaxy changes and evolves with time.

Click here to see the full tutorial or browse the site to find out more about the science behind the Milky Way Project.


The Milky Way Project is currently working with data taken from the Galactic Legacy Infrared Mid-Plane Survey Extraordinaire (GLIMPSE) and the Multiband Imaging Photometer for Spitzer Galactic Plane Survey (MIPSGAL). We aim to bring you a host of interesting science problems as time goes by, and to begin with we're looking for bubbles. These bubbles are part of the life cycle of stars. Some bubbles have already been found - by the study that inspired this project - but we want to find more! By finding more, we will build up a comprehensive view of not only these bubbles, but our galaxy as a whole. We're asking you to help us map star formation in our galaxy.


How to take part

So how can you help? Using our bubble-drawing interface, our hope is that you will find bubbles and note any important or unusual characteristics. For example, if you can see what looks like a knot in the bubble, flag it! This knot might tell us something about how the bubble is affecting star formation in the region. If you see a star cluster, flag it! We hope to map the location of these clusters - many of which have not been located before.

As well as bubbles, knots and stars clusters there are other objects hidden throughout these images such as young stars, supernova remnants and never-before-seen galaxies. If you see anything unusual in the images, make sure to mark it using the 'areas' tool. We hope to map out these objects and then use your discoveries to make more observations. You might even discover something we didn't expect.

For more information visit Milky Way project

Nebula examples

Multiple Bubbles Edge of Space Eagle Nebula Active Region