Take a trip lightyears across the galaxy for a guided tour through five of TRAPPIST-1’s seven-planet system.
Located approximately 39.6 light-years from the Sun somewhere in the constellation Aquarius, TRAPPIST-1, better known as 2MASS J23062928-0502285 for short, is a massive red dwarf star forming an exoplanet system composed of seven Earth-like planets. While too far for visual confirmation, NASA’s infamous Spitzer Space Telescope has been able to obtain other crucial data.
In commemoration of the legendary telescopes 15th anniversary, NASA has launched a pair of immersive applications built around the stunning images and important data captured by the revolutionary device.
Available for free on the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift, NASA’s Exoplanet Excursions VR experience takes users on a jaw-dropping tour across five of the seven planets forming the TRAPPIST-1 exoplanet system. As previously stated, the system is too far too see from Earth, even with the Spitzer. Fortunately, the powerful telescope has still managed to capture various bits of data, allowing researchers to develop 3D renderings of what they think the surfaces may look like based on their compositions.
You can check out these far-away planets now by downloading Exoplanet Excursion over at the Spitzer Mission website. The experience will soon be available via the Oculus Store. A 360-degree version is also available on the NASA Spitzer’s YouTube channel for mobile VR devices, such as Google Cardboard.
This is just part one of NASA’s anniversary celebration, however. The american-based space agency is also offering NASA Selfies, a custom photo app that straps users into an official NASA spacesuit and lets them pose in front of 30 intergalactic backdrops. This includes everything from the Orion Nebula, to the center of the Milky Way Galaxy, with more locations on the way.
Image Credit: National Aeronautics and Space Administration