Photos: Reclaiming the night sky

The Milky Way from the Tooran desert in Iran

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The Milky Way from the Tooran desert in Iran Source: Babak Tafreshi

The Milky Way from the Tooran desert in Iran

The Milky Way spills across the sky at dark sites like this one in the Tooran desert in eastern Iran. At least 250 billion, and possibly as many as a trillion, stars reside in our galaxy, which takes the shape of a disc 100,000 light years across.

 

Iranian photographer Babak Tafreshi has won the 2009 Lennart Nilsson scientific photography prize. According to the award panel, his images "reclaim a night sky that most modern people have lost" – see some of them here.

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