APOD: 3 ATs (2024 May 04)

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APOD Robot
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APOD: 3 ATs (2024 May 04)

Post by APOD Robot » Sat May 04, 2024 4:05 am

Image 3 ATs

Explanation: Despite their resemblance to R2D2, these three are not the droids you're looking for. Instead, the enclosures house 1.8 meter Auxiliary Telescopes (ATs) at Paranal Observatory in the Atacama Desert region of Chile. The ATs are designed to be used for interferometry, a technique for achieving extremely high resolution observations, in concert with the observatory's 8 meter Very Large Telescope units. A total of four ATs are operational, each fitted with a transporter that moves the telescope along a track allowing different arrays with the large unit telescopes. To work as an interferometer, the light from each telescope is brought to a common focal point by a system of mirrors in underground tunnels. Above these three ATs, the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds are the far, far away satellite galaxies of our own Milky Way. In the clear and otherwise dark southern skies, planet Earth's greenish atmospheric airglow stretches faintly along the horizon.

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johnnydeep
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Re: APOD: 3 ATs (2024 May 04)

Post by johnnydeep » Sat May 04, 2024 4:07 pm

I searched in vain on the ESO site for an annotated overall map of the VLTI facility but came up empty. But google was my friend. Sadly though, the - much! - smaller R2D2-like ATs on their tracks aren't labeled, but are clear to see in the lower parts of the photo:


And here's an actual aerial view:


And finally, here's an aerial close-up from google maps:

Observatorio Paranal, Very Large Telescope, Taltal, Antofagasta, Chile
--
"To B̬̻̋̚o̞̮̚̚l̘̲̀᷾d̫͓᷅ͩḷ̯᷁ͮȳ͙᷊͠ Go......Beyond The F͇̤i̙̖e̤̟l̡͓d͈̹s̙͚ We Know."{ʲₒʰₙNYᵈₑᵉₚ}

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Re: APOD: 3 ATs (2024 May 04)

Post by MelvzLuster » Sat May 04, 2024 5:51 pm

The 3ATs are certainly an advantage for us who keep on looking for new pictures of the infinity of the Cosmos. It is also fascinating that our beautiful Earth will not be destroyed but only be transformed into a New Earth just like other planets like Mars to be terraformed.
Cmdr. Melvyn M. Lusterio
NASA's Space Commander-Engineer
USS Victory NCC 1967

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Ann
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Re: APOD: 3 ATs (2024 May 04)

Post by Ann » Sat May 04, 2024 7:17 pm

MelvzLuster wrote: Sat May 04, 2024 5:51 pm The 3ATs are certainly an advantage for us who keep on looking for new pictures of the infinity of the Cosmos. It is also fascinating that our beautiful Earth will not be destroyed but only be transformed into a New Earth just like other planets like Mars to be terraformed.
Well, your title certainly sounds impressive. You were a NASA's Space Commander-Engineer for USS Victory NCC 1967? Impressive indeed.

But what you said about the Earth being transformed into a New Earth sure sounds like religion to me, not science. And Starship Asterisk* is not a forum for religion.

Ann
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johnnydeep
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Re: APOD: 3 ATs (2024 May 04)

Post by johnnydeep » Sat May 04, 2024 8:18 pm

Ann wrote: Sat May 04, 2024 7:17 pm
MelvzLuster wrote: Sat May 04, 2024 5:51 pm The 3ATs are certainly an advantage for us who keep on looking for new pictures of the infinity of the Cosmos. It is also fascinating that our beautiful Earth will not be destroyed but only be transformed into a New Earth just like other planets like Mars to be terraformed.
Well, your title certainly sounds impressive. You were a NASA's Space Commander-Engineer for USS Victory NCC 1967? Impressive indeed.

But what you said about the Earth being transformed into a New Earth sure sounds like religion to me, not science. And Starship Asterisk* is not a forum for religion.

Ann
Ha, I thought that ship was real! But it's a starship! See https://www.ussvictory-ncc1967.com
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"To B̬̻̋̚o̞̮̚̚l̘̲̀᷾d̫͓᷅ͩḷ̯᷁ͮȳ͙᷊͠ Go......Beyond The F͇̤i̙̖e̤̟l̡͓d͈̹s̙͚ We Know."{ʲₒʰₙNYᵈₑᵉₚ}

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Re: APOD: 3 ATs (2024 May 04)

Post by VictorBorun » Sat May 04, 2024 8:33 pm

johnnydeep wrote: Sat May 04, 2024 4:07 pm I searched in vain on the ESO site for an annotated overall map of the VLTI facility but came up empty. But google was my friend. Sadly though, the - much! - smaller R2D2-like ATs on their tracks aren't labeled, but are clear to see in the lower parts of the photo:


And here's an actual aerial view:


And finally, here's an aerial close-up from google maps:

Observatorio Paranal, Very Large Telescope, Taltal, Antofagasta, Chile
those underground corridors to join the light from 4 telescopes and achieve what only radio-astronomy's arrays could is a wow.
They say this thing can measure the diameter of Proxima Centauri…