Galaxy Zoo is an international project in the field of astronomy, which makes available photographs of millions of galaxies taken by the world's largest telescopes on an online platform. Visitors can participate in the project by identifying the shape of the galaxy represented in the image, according to the categories presented by the site. Begun in 2007, the project is now in its fourth edition and has classified more than 1.5 million galaxies.
The platform in Portuguese has been available since the beginning of April and its translation and adaptation was carried out by the Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics of the University of Lisbon. It thus allows more than 250 million people from Portuguese-speaking countries to contribute to research on the evolution of the Universe in Portuguese without language barriers, while promoting accessibility to scientific content in Portuguese.
In a press release, João Retrê, director of CAAUL's Scientific Mediation Office and coordinator of the translation and adaptation of Galaxy Zoo into Portuguese, stressed the importance of public participation in processing data of this dimension. "Computers are often used to assist in this process, but the human brain is still more efficient at identifying and distinguishing patterns. Involving a large number of volunteers in this task greatly decreases the duration of the task, produces more accurate results, and also allows them to learn more about the Universe in the process."
From a scientific point of view, Galaxy Zoo points out that the shape of a galaxy lets you know a lot about its history. The information classified in this project has already served as the basis for dozens of astronomy articles, supporting the international scientific community in the creation of new knowledge.