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First snow of the year at the Gemini facility Mauna Kea
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First snow of the year at the Gemini facility, Mauna Kea, Hawaii.

April 14, 2010
First snow of the year at the Gemini facility, Mauna Kea, Hawaii.

More about this Image The Gemini facility is an international partnership involving the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, Chile, Brazil and Argentina. The project involves the operation of two 8-meter telescopes: one in the Northern Hemisphere on Mauna Kea, Hawaii, and one in the Southern Hemisphere on Cerro Pachon, Chile.

The twin telescopes are infrared-optimized, have superb image quality and provide unprecedented optical and infrared coverage of the northern and southern skies for astronomical research. Scientific operations began on Gemini North in 2000 and on Gemini South in summer 2001.

These telescopes provide astronomers from the partnership countries with world-class observing facilities. Observing time is assigned on the basis of scientific merit. NSF acts as the executive agency for the partnership, and the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., a consortium of 20 major universities, manages the Gemini. (Year of image: 1997)


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