After hovering over Mount Everest and the gorges that plunge to the Ganges, you are pulled through the Earth's atmosphere to glimpse the inky black of space over Tibet's high desert. So begins The Known Universe, a new film produced by the American Museum of Natural History. The magic of this film, though, happens as the inky black expands. Pulling farther and farther from Earth, you see the deep blue of the Pacific give way to night as the Sun comes into focus, the orbits of the solar system shrink smaller and smaller, the constellations Sagittarius and Scorpio stretch and distort, and, as the Milky Way receeds, the spidery structure of millions of other galaxies come into view. Then, you reach the limit of the observable universe, the afterglow of the Big Bang. This light has taken more than 13.7 billion years to reach our planet, and you return, back to Earth, to two lakes that are nestled between Mount Kailash and Mount Gurla Mandhata in the Himalayas. A stunning video!


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  • Manisha

    Stunning video! Even with so much unknown in the universe, this one really made me appreciate how precious and fragile life is.

  • Connie Valentine

    I fell in love with our planet all over again, and the God who created all of this majesty.

  • Leticia Gonzalez

    First of all, THANK YOU for sharing these gorgeous images! This video makes me wonder so many things: Why, When, Who, How? But more than anything, it reminds me how marvelous is our Universe and how much I love our beautiful planet!..A fantastic job making this great Video!

  • Joseph Alabat

    When humor is explored more than space, science, history, religion and time, we will have arrived. To make God laugh is the purpose of man.

  • Mary Essary

    This should give a sense of scale -- it is not moving out linearly, or by factors of ten or . . . see the much older video "Powers of Ten" by Charles and Ray Eames. AND, something that would be interesting is a video, not of moving in space, but in time -- we have no sense of the cycles that govern our earth -- much more interesting than the giant cosmos out there.

  • Russell

    Awesome! Truly useful application of modern digital technology, as it gives great perspective to our place in this vast universe!

  • Kat

    In the middle of watching it the first time I was stunned -knowing I'd have to watch this over & over & over. Simply AMAZING! Thank YOU!

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