This beautiful image is the first" full-sky image" from Europe's Planck telescope. The remarkable feat of engineering which was sent into space last year to survey the "oldest light" in the cosmos.
The image itself took just over 6 months to piece together as a map of the Milky Way, the Galaxy in which Earth resides. This unique photograph demonstrates what is visible to instruments that are sensitive to very long wavelengths of light, and is expected to assist researchers in understanding how our Galaxy came to look the way it does today.
The bright horizontal line running across the image is the Milky Way's "main disc" - the plane in which the Sun and Earth sit.
Source: BBC News