The NY Times report­ed that today, Google is unveil­ing a new ser­vice with­in Google Earth that’ll allow users to view the skies as seen from Earth. Like Google Earth, the new ser­vice called Sky will let users fly around and zoom in, expos­ing increas­ing­ly detailed imagery of some 100 mil­lion stars and 200 mil­lion galax­ies.

Mr. Car­ol Chris­t­ian, an astronomer with the Space Tele­scope Sci­ence Insti­tute, a non­prof­it aca­d­e­m­ic con­sor­tium that sup­ports the Hub­ble Space Tele­scope said that “You will be able to browse into the sky like nev­er before,”

Mr. Chris­t­ian also said that while oth­er pro­grams allow users to explore the skies, they typ­i­cal­ly com­bine a mix of rep­re­sen­ta­tions of stars and galax­ies that are over­laid with pho­tographs but “These are real­ly the images of the sky. Every­thing is real.”

Google said that it devel­oped the project strict­ly because some of its engi­neers were inter­est­ed in it, and that it had no plans to make mon­ey from it for now.

“It’s mere­ly about get­ting new kinds of infor­ma­tion out there for the pub­lic,” said Chikai Ohaza­ma, a Google Earth project man­ag­er.

As with Google Earth, indi­vid­ual users and orga­ni­za­tions will be able to over­lay pho­tographs, anno­ta­tions and oth­er kinds of data on top of Sky’s basic images and make them avail­able to oth­ers as lay­ers — called mash-ups. Accord­ing to the NY Times report, Sky already has lay­ers show­ing var­i­ous con­stel­la­tions, a user’s guide to galax­ies, the posi­tion of plan­ets two months into the future and ani­ma­tions of lunar posi­tions.

To get Sky, users will have to down­load the lat­est ver­sion of Google Earth.

This is why I love Google. Nobody knows when Google is going to launch a ser­vice that’ll com­plete­ly change the way we use some­thing. Head over to NY Times to read the news in detail.

Update: I just noticed that the Mash­able team has also got the news up on their blog with some screen­shots.

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