Usually, when you think about Google Maps you think about exploring the Earth and seeing any location you like from the comfort of your own room. However, it appears that will no longer be the case. Google Maps took it one step further and it added some other planets and moons to its locations. The images used are taken by various spacecraft such as the Cassini probe.
Take it to space
Google Maps now offers planetary maps that allow you to visualize Europa, Ganymede, Rhea, Mimas and many others. For example, you will be able to take a look at Titan, where you can find methane lakes, go to Mimas and admire its huge crater or visit Enceladus, Saturn’s moon where water may be hidden.
The program has also added some other planets. “The fun doesn’t stop there—we’ve added Pluto, Venus, and several other moons for a total of 12 new worlds for you to explore. Grab your spacesuit and check out the rest of this corner of the galaxy that we call home,” Google explained.
You can explore space by going to street view and then be zooming out.
Reuniting thousands of images
In order to create maps of these planets and moons, Google had to use over 500,000 images, most of them taken by the Cassini probe. Björn Jónsson is the astronomical artist that put together most of the maps.
However, it appears that there are some errors and Google Maps got some names and images wrong. This problem has been noticed by Emily Lakdawala, a planetary scientist, and she signaled it on Twitter: “I’m in contact with a Googler about the problem maps, which include Ganymede, Mimas, Enceladus, Dione, Rhea, Iapetus, Europa, and Titan.” Now we have to wait until Google Maps decided to fix these errors.