Leiden, April 1953. It took centuries of searching, years of waiting, months of observing and weeks of calculating. For the very first time in human history a group of scientists looks at a map: the first map of our Galaxy, our Island in the Universe. These scientists are some of the top Dutch astronomers. And the map is the result of an extraordinary prediction, cutting-edge technological development and a lot of persistence. Spiral Galaxy, the Milky Way unravelled, highlights the huge contribution of Dutch scientists between 1886 and 1955 to a new view of our Universe. A view where man, Earth and Sun are no longer at the centre of everything. Profs. Adriaan Blaauw, Hugo van Woerden, Kees de Jager and technician Arie Hin take us behind the scenes of this fascinating search for our place in the Universe.´

The position of the gas clouds (one of the extra features on the
Spiral Galaxy 5:30 minute preview:

For all background information on the film and on how to purchase the DVD please visit

Production & Initiative:
Produced by Lightcurve Films and DKW Film © 2009

With thanks to:
Netherlands Research School for Astronomy
Media Junkies
Zcene Moving Media Company

Music by William Zeitler:

(still photo of clip from the European Southern Observatory)

Loading more stuff…

Hmm…it looks like things are taking a while to load. Try again?

Loading videos…