46-Gigapixel View of Milky Way Is Largest Image of Space

File--BI via Getty Images

Space is big, but it's never been quite this big. This composite image taken by astronomers at Germany's Ruhr-Universität Bochum is, they claim, the largest image of space to date, NBC News reported. It shows a long swathe of the Milky Way, photographed piece by piece over a period of five years from the university's observatory in the Chilean desert.

The final image is 46 billion pixels, or 46 gigapixels: 855,000 pixels wide by 54,000 tall. It weighs in at 194 gigabytes, which makes it a bit difficult to download — you have to navigate it in a special viewer like it's an online map. And in a way, it is: The stars are cataloged and you can put the name of one, like Eta Carinae or M8, into the search box and you'll be sent to its location.

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