If you’re longing for a glimpse of our galaxy’s sky, the Milky Way, the end of summer is one of the best times of year to view it. Years ago, before light pollution from major cities, the Milky Way could be viewed almost anywhere on almost every clear night without a moon. Today, lights that are left on all night make it all but impossible to see the Milky Way, according to Space.com. The best way to see the Milky Way is to get as far from civilization as possible. This time lapse video of the Milky Way at Cook National Park in New Zealand by Dan Eggleton on his YouTube channel is a perfect example:
Another great time to see the Milky Way, provided the sky is clear and moonless and you’re far from light pollution, is just after a cold front has passed through. At that time or anytime, it takes about 20 minutes for the human eyes to become adjusted to the deep dark of night for maximal viewing of the Milky Way. Here’s another view of the Milky Way from Al Medwara Mountain in Al Fayoum, Egypt by Mohamed Hesham’s YouTube channel shows another view:
The Yosemite National Park Milky way is a brilliant sky surrounded by towering trees, and even includes a few shooting stars. Cristobal Young posted the video on his YouTube channel here:
The Milky Way is more than just something pretty to gaze at in the wilderness, though. According to recent discoveries by scientists, there might be clues to a century-old puzzle about stardust. The August issue of Science magazine reports that material can be found in between the huge spaces between different star systems within a galaxy, including dust and gas.
“There’s an old saying that ‘We are all stardust,’ since all chemical elements heavier than helium are produced in stars,” said Rosemary Wyse, one of the researchers, in a news release. “But we still don’t know why stars form where they do. This study is giving us new clues about the interstellar medium out of which the stars form.” Researchers used data they collected from a 10-year period that they call a “pseudo-3D” and shows the planes of the Milky Way.