(via APOD: 2012 December 15)
When Gemini Sends Stars to Paranal
Image Credit & Copyright: Stéphane Guisard (Los Cielos de America), TWAN
The ESO, the darkened skies over Paranal Observatory in Chile’s Atacama Desert, the Very Large Telescopes (VLT - big buildings in the middle), the Auxiliary Telescopes (for VLT interferometry - short ones that don’t look like they have hoods), and the new VLT Survey Telescope (looks like a mini-VLT on the right), all combine to make a great foreground for a shot of the Geminid meteor shower.
This multi-exposure, long-shutter (20 seconds) composite points toward the constellation Gemini, so the meteor are streaking very obviously from their radiant. Jupiter is the bright ball on the left, with Orion obvious above it, and the faint trail of the Milky Way in the middle.

(via APOD: 2012 December 15)

When Gemini Sends Stars to Paranal

Image Credit & CopyrightStéphane Guisard (Los Cielos de America), TWAN

The ESO, the darkened skies over Paranal Observatory in Chile’s Atacama Desert, the Very Large Telescopes (VLT - big buildings in the middle), the Auxiliary Telescopes (for VLT interferometry - short ones that don’t look like they have hoods), and the new VLT Survey Telescope (looks like a mini-VLT on the right), all combine to make a great foreground for a shot of the Geminid meteor shower.

This multi-exposure, long-shutter (20 seconds) composite points toward the constellation Gemini, so the meteor are streaking very obviously from their radiant. Jupiter is the bright ball on the left, with Orion obvious above it, and the faint trail of the Milky Way in the middle.

(via APOD: 2012 April 21 - 3 ATs)
They look like R2D2, but are the ATs for Panaral, so they’re AT-AT-AT, I guess?
Anyway, “AT” stands for Auxiliary Telescope, 1.8 meter movable telescopes designed to be used for interferometry in tandem with the 8 m Very Large Telescope units. Interferometry allows for very high resolution observations without having to build quite so monolithically large a mirror in the telescope. You use the observations from all the various ‘scopes to reduce interference from the atmosphere (by compensating for the effects of the air) and collect as much light as possible. It requires the light to all be added together and collected in underground tunnels with mirrors.
Pretty nifty “little” droids, if you ask me.
Image Credit & Copyright: Yuri Beletsky (ESO)

(via APOD: 2012 April 21 - 3 ATs)

They look like R2D2, but are the ATs for Panaral, so they’re AT-AT-AT, I guess?

Anyway, “AT” stands for Auxiliary Telescope, 1.8 meter movable telescopes designed to be used for interferometry in tandem with the 8 m Very Large Telescope units. Interferometry allows for very high resolution observations without having to build quite so monolithically large a mirror in the telescope. You use the observations from all the various ‘scopes to reduce interference from the atmosphere (by compensating for the effects of the air) and collect as much light as possible. It requires the light to all be added together and collected in underground tunnels with mirrors.

Pretty nifty “little” droids, if you ask me.

Image Credit & CopyrightYuri Beletsky (ESO)