Galaxy hunt draws massive traffic
By Paul Rincon
Science reporter, BBC News
Users can classify as many galaxies as they like
An online initiative which asks members of the public to classify galaxies recorded unprecedented traffic in its first 48 hours.
The venture is a follow-up to the Galaxy Zoo project launched in 2007.
Co-founder Dr Chris Lintott said the website had been getting 12 clicks per second in its first two days.
He said members of the public had answered some two million questions about galaxies in the database during that same period.
"To put that in perspective, we think it would have taken a PhD student working non-stop nearly eight months to match that," Dr Lintott, from the University of Oxford, told BBC News.
The more people take part the more accurate the results are
Dr Chris Lintott, University of Oxford
The site's founders say that, by working together, the public have proven to be just as good at galaxy-spotting as professional astronomers.
The original site asked web users to say whether a galaxy was spiral or elliptical, and which way it was rotating.
Galaxy Zoo 2 asks them to delve deeper into 250,000 of the brightest and best galaxies to describe any distinctive or unusual features about them. It was launched on 17 February.
Dr Stephen Bamford, an astronomer at the University of Nottingham, commented: "This project is a fantastic opportunity for people to experience the wonder of space and learn about astronomy and science in a fun and e