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Latest La Silla Observatory Stories

1bee9eca9743daf20a351a47201b6c39
2009-12-11 06:40:00

A new telescope "” VISTA (the Visible and Infrared Survey Telescope for Astronomy) "” has just started work at ESO's Paranal Observatory and has made its first release of pictures. VISTA is a survey telescope working at infrared wavelengths and is the world's largest telescope dedicated to mapping the sky. Its large mirror, wide field of view and very sensitive detectors will reveal a completely new view of the southern sky. Spectacular new images of the Flame Nebula, the center...

49eec422afb759fb3ef1d5484692a8a21
2009-11-20 09:28:03

A new technique using near-infrared images, obtained with ESO's 3.58-metre New Technology Telescope (NTT), allows astronomers to see through the opaque dust lanes of the giant cannibal galaxy Centaurus A, unveiling its "last meal" in unprecedented detail "” a smaller spiral galaxy, currently twisted and warped. This amazing image also shows thousands of star clusters, strewn like glittering gems, churning inside Centaurus A. Centaurus A (NGC 5128) is the nearest giant, elliptical...

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2009-10-14 07:15:00

Today ESO announces the release of a stunning new image of one of our nearest galactic neighbors, Barnard's Galaxy, also known as NGC 6822. The galaxy contains regions of rich star formation and curious nebulae, such as the bubble clearly visible in the upper left of this remarkable vista. Astronomers classify NGC 6822 as an irregular dwarf galaxy because of its odd shape and relatively diminutive size by galactic standards. The strange shapes of these cosmic misfits help researchers...

025bf6fefd0d1d999baf04681bbe6fc01
2009-09-28 07:45:00

The third image of ESO's GigaGalaxy Zoom project has just been released online, completing this eye-opening dive into our galactic home in outstanding fashion. The latest image follows on from views, released over the last two weeks, of the sky as seen with the unaided eye and through an amateur telescope. This third installment provides another breathtaking vista of an astronomical object, this time a 370-million-pixel view of the Lagoon Nebula of the quality and depth needed by professional...

6a9814c5b5eaeede15a3d3dd11a225f51
2009-09-21 08:25:00

The second of three images of ESO's GigaGalaxy Zoom project has just been released online. It is a new and wonderful 340-million-pixel vista of the central parts of our home galaxy as seen from ESO's Paranal Observatory with an amateur telescope. This 34 by 20-degree wide image provides us with a view as experienced by amateur astronomers around the world. However, its incredible beauty and appeal owe much to the quality of the observing site and the skills of St©phane Guisard, the...

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2009-09-14 07:55:00

The first of three images of ESO's GigaGalaxy Zoom project "” a new magnificent 800-million-pixel panorama of the entire sky as seen from ESO's observing sites in Chile "” has just been released online. The project allows stargazers to explore and experience the Universe as it is seen with the unaided eye from the darkest and best viewing locations in the world. This 360-degree panoramic image, covering the entire celestial sphere, reveals the cosmic landscape that surrounds our...

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2009-08-26 07:20:00

Today ESO has released a new image of the Trifid Nebula, showing just why it is a firm favorite of astronomers, amateur and professional alike. This massive star factory is so named for the dark dust bands that trisect its glowing heart, and is a rare combination of three nebula types, revealing the fury of freshly formed stars and presaging more star birth. Smoldering several thousand light-years away in the constellation of Sagittarius (the Archer), the Trifid Nebula presents a compelling...

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2009-08-05 09:10:00

ESO has just released a stunning new image of a field of stars towards the constellation of Carina (the Keel). This striking view is ablaze with a flurry of stars of all colors and brightnesses, some of which are seen against a backdrop of clouds of dust and gas. One unusual star in the middle, HD 87643, has been extensively studied with several ESO telescopes, including the Very Large Telescope Interferometer (VLTI). Surrounded by a complex, extended nebula that is the result of previous...

bcc14140c17e10b2c33a89d6aee6f1c21
2009-07-29 06:45:00

Using different state-of-the-art techniques on ESO's Very Large Telescope, two independent teams of astronomers have obtained the sharpest ever views of the supergiant star Betelgeuse. They show that the star has a vast plume of gas almost as large as our Solar System and a gigantic bubble boiling on its surface. These discoveries provide important clues to help explain how these mammoths shed material at such a tremendous rate. Betelgeuse "” the second brightest star in the...

972f6d037f71e75276ae2976cd6888ea1
2009-07-16 08:05:00

Today ESO has released a new and stunning image of the sky around the Eagle Nebula, a stellar nursery where infant star clusters carve out monster columns of dust and gas. Located 7000 light-years away, towards the constellation of Serpens (the Snake), the Eagle Nebula is a dazzling stellar nursery, a region of gas and dust where young stars are currently being formed and where a cluster of massive, hot stars, NGC 6611, has just been born. The powerful light and strong winds from these...


Latest La Silla Observatory Reference Libraries

2_a939de6ff82a1bda0a57cee7dd9bce652
2004-10-19 04:45:40

La Silla Observatory -- La Silla is a 2400-m mountain, bordering the southern extremity of the Atacama desert in Chile. It is located about 160 Km north of La Serena. Its geographical coordinates are: Latitude 29 15' south & Longitude 70 44' west. Originally known as Cinchado, the mountain was renamed La Silla (the saddle) after its shape. It rises quite isolated and remote from any artificial light and dust sources (astronomy's worst enemies). La Silla was the first ESO...

2_ba71a7acc79052838276f5ebe43de3842
2004-10-19 04:45:40

European Southern Observatory -- ESO, the European Southern Observatory, was created in 1962 to: "establish and operate an astronomical observatory in the southern hemisphere, equipped with powerful instruments, with the aim of furthering and organising collaboration in astronomy". ESO is supported by Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Sweden, Switzerland and United Kingdom. Other countries have expressed interest to become a member as well. ESO...

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Word of the Day
malpais
  • The ragged surface of a lava-flow.
'Malpais' translates from Spanish as 'bad land.'