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Awesome Universe: Exhibition Catalogue

Awesome Universe: Exhibition Catalogue

Awesome Universe: Exhibition Catalogue

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Book Details:

Pages:110 pages
Size:4.79 MB


The signing of the ESO Convention in 1962 and the creation of ESO was the culmination of the dream of leading astronomers from five European countries, Belgium, France, Germany, the Netherlands and Sweden: a joint European observatory to be built in the southern hemisphere to give astronomers from Europe access to the magnificent and rich southern sky by means of a large telescope. The dream resulted in the creation of the La Silla Observatory near La Serena in Chile and eventually led to the construction and operation of a fleet of telescopes, with the 3.6-metre telescope as flagship. As Italy and Switzerland joined ESO in 1982 the construction of the New Technology Telescope, with pioneering advances in active optics, became possible, preparing the way for the next step: the construction of the Very Large Telescope. The VLT made adaptive optics and interferometry available to a wide community. The decision to build a fully integrated VLT system, consisting of four 8.2-metre telescopes and providing a dozen foci for a carefully thoughtout complement of instruments opened a new era in ESO’s history, and has created the most advanced ground-based optical observatory in the world.

The scientific community is to be congratulated for keeping astronomy at the forefront of scientific research, as well as our supporters and international partners for believing in our ambitious projects. ESO owes its success in a large part to these collaborations!

I now invite you to experience Awesome Universe — the Cosmos through the eyes of the European Southern Observatory — a series of public exhibitions celebrating 50 years of Europe’s quest to explore the southern sky. It is presented internationally, in cooperation with ESO’s partners in Europe and around the world. Visitors will discover these visually stunning images, showcasing celestial objects such as galaxies, nebulae, and star clusters as seen by ESO’s observatories, as well as beautiful images of the observatories themselves, which are located in some of the most unusual places on Earth.



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