Google
By Lisa Marie Segarra
October 18, 2017

Google Maps launched itself into space once again with new opportunities to explore parts of the galaxy.

Google announced this week that it added a dozen new places including Pluto, Venus and several moons to its galactic exploration feature. There are now 17 different planetary maps to look through.

The feature allows users to explore planets Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars, along with some dwarf planets, like Pluto. For Earth, zooming in offers 3D Google Maps showing borders, cities, countries and terrain. When looking at Google Maps in the terrain view, you can also zoom out until it shows Earth in space. Clicking on specific places will also provide some basic information.

For other planets, visuals of terrain are available along with labeled craters, mountains or plains. Pluto has the least amount of information, with about a third missing any identifiers or visuals.

Some of the images are taken from the Cassini spacecraft, while others come from astronomical artist Björn Jónsson, along with photos from NASA and the European Space Agency, according to Google.

This isn’t the company’s first foray into space: Google also launched the Street View of the International Space Station in July.

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