From web to desktop to full dome planetarium, WorldWide Telescope (WWT) enables you to explore the universe, bringing together imagery from the best ground and space-based telescopes in the world and combining it with 3D navigation. Experience narrated guided tours from astronomers and educators featuring interesting places in the sky. You can research and import your own data and visualize it, then create a tour to share with others.
WorldWide Telescope is an observatory on your desktop, allowing you to see the sky in a way you have never seen it before through individual exploration; multi-wavelength views; stars and planets within context to each other; the ability to zoom in and out; and the capability to create, search and view guided tours of the universe. You can view the entire solar system in 3-D with light and shadows created from the sun, and can explore the Earth and Mars in incredible detail. You also can watch planets orbit around the sun, and moons orbit around planets.
The Visual Experience Engine delivers seamless panning and zooming around the night sky, now enhanced with the TeraPixel sky image that provides an unmatched panorama of the heavens. WorldWide Telescope delivers seamless integration of scientifically relevant information, including multi-wavelength, multiple-telescope distributed image and data sets, and one-click contextual access to distributed Web information and data sources.
In March of 2009, NASA and Microsoft announced plans to make planetary images and data available via the Internet under a Space Act Agreement. Through this project, NASA and Microsoft jointly developed the technology and infrastructure necessary to make the most interesting NASA content — including high-resolution scientific images and data from Mars and the moon — explorable on WorldWide Telescope, Microsoft’s online virtual telescope for exploring the universe. Under the joint agreement, NASA’s Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif., will process and host more than 100 terabytes, or 20,000 DVDs of data – featuring high-resolution scientific imagery and data from NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO). Launched in August 2005, MRO has been examining Mars with a high-resolution camera and five other instruments since 2006 and has returned more data than all other Mars missions combined.
Update: MWT 3.0.73 Beta (Thanks to Hackemate for the tip)