Announcements

ann14032-en-gb — Announcement
Science in School Issue 28: Now Available!
25 April 2014: The latest issue of the free magazine Science in School is now available online and in print. This European journal for science teachers offers inspiring articles, fun games and hands-on activities for students in every issue. It aims to promote inspiring science teaching by encouraging communication between teachers, scientists and everyone else involved in European science education. Some of the highlights of this issue include: how to use citizen science in the classroom, how archaeology and genetics reveal the cause of the Black Death, glaciers on Mars, and how a simple fungus used to brew beer is now used around the world to advance cancer research. Teaching activities include: how to evaluate Planck’s constant using simple equipment in the classroom and how to teach chemistry for the youngest of children. Science in School is published by EIROforum, a collaboration between eight European intergovernmental scientific research organisations, of which ESO is ...
ann14031-en-gb — Announcement
ESO Steps into Augmented Reality Territory with New ALMA App for Tablets and Smartphones
16 April 2014: Thanks to a new app developed in partnership with the Polish company Bridge, the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) will appear in 3D before your eyes by using your tablet or smartphone along with a print-out of a PDF file, called a tracker. The app can be just for fun or used as an educational tool to learn more about ALMA by visualising the array of 66 antennas at a touch of your screen. By zooming in on selected antennas you will be able to see details in the three-dimensional model. To download the ALMA augmented reality app for free please visit Google Play and the iTunes AppStore. The tracker document is also available in PDF form on the ESO web pages. ALMA is an array of 66 antennas spread out over up to 16 kilometres on the Chajnantor Plateau at 5000 metres above sea level in northern Chile. It is ...
ann14030-en-gb — Announcement
ESO Site Shortlisted for Cherenkov Telescope Array
15 April 2014: ESO’s Paranal–Armazones site in Chile has been shortlisted as one of two potential sites in the southern hemisphere for the international Cherenkov Telescope Array (CTA) — a large array for ground-based gamma-ray astronomy. This is an important step towards the realisation of the project and if the site is selected, this will open up a new frontier for ESO. On 10 April 2014 Government representatives from the 12 of the countries [1] involved in the Cherenkov Telescope Array (CTA) project met in Munich and decided to start negotiations with the two sites — Aar in Namibia and ESO's Paranal–Armazones site in Chile — keeping Leoncito in Argentina as a third option. The CTA project is an initiative to build the next generation of ground-based, very high energy gamma-ray instruments. The CTA project aims to use detection of high-energy gamma-rays to provide a deeper insight into the high-energy Universe. The representatives ...
ann14029-en-gb — Announcement
Global Samsung App Features ESO Images
11 April 2014: Astronomy enthusiasts across the world can now enjoy the best ESO images and news from the Universe on their Samsung Smart TV devices. The company launched the application AstroImages in December 2013 in Latin America and they are now expanding and releasing this product in Smart TVs around the world. AstroImages allows users to see the beautiful images obtained and made available exclusively by ESO in their homes. Featuring content ranging from press releases, with the latest news in astronomy, the Pictures of the Week , and the top 100 images taken by ESO. "With this application you can enjoy the beauty and splendour of our Universe through the spectacular images of ESO on your TV. Discover more about the Solar System, nebulae and star clusters, and many other wonders of the skies in your home," says Daniel Petrini of Samsung Electronics. AstroImages can be found within the Educational category ...
ann14028-en-gb — Announcement
Award for ESO Headquarters Extension Architects Auer Weber
4 April 2014: Auer Weber has won a Best in Interior and Architecture award for the ESO Headquarters extension project at the Architecture, Interior, Technical Solutions (AIT), Awards 2014. After being shortlisted as one of six finalists in the category of Office/Administration, the ESO Headquarters extension project went on to receive a special mention at the award ceremony at the Light+Building Trade Fair 2014 held in Frankfurt, Germany on 2 April 2014. The AIT Award was first launched in 2012 and immediately became one of the largest competitions for architecture and interior design worldwide. An internationally renowned jury of architects and interior designers judge the awards — this year from a total of 573 submitted works from 31 countries. The award is divided into eight different categories [1] where all types of architectural projects and interior spaces can be submitted. On 10 March 2014, an international jury selected the ten to fifteen best ...
ann14027-en-gb — Announcement
Media Advisory: Invitation to Attend E-ELT Mountain Blasting Event
4 April 2014: During the week of 16 June 2014 there will be a major media event at ESO’s Paranal Observatory in northern Chile to mark the blasting of the top of Cerro Armazones, the 3000-metre peak that will be the home of the European Extremely Large Telescope. The ceremony will be attended by VIPs from both Chile and the ESO Member States as well as representatives of the local communities, senior officials from the project and ESO staff. It will be a significant milestone in the construction of the largest optical/infrared telescope in the world. Members of the media are invited to attend in person to both witness the ceremony and to visit ESO’s Paranal Observatory at its spectacular site in the Atacama Desert. Please express your interest by filling out the ESO media visit form, noting that you wish to attend the E-ELT mountain blasting event under “Objective of the Visit.” ...
ann14026-en-gb — Announcement
Earthquake in Chile Causes No Damage or Casualties at ESO Observatories
2 April 2014: A magnitude 8.2 earthquake struck northwest Chile at 20:46 local time (01:46 CEST) on Tuesday 1 April 2014. The epicentre was about 95 kilometres north-west of the city of Iquique. The earthquake has caused significant casualties and damage in coastal regions. Large parts of the Pacific coast were evacuated in response to tsunami warnings. ESO expresses its deepest condolences to the families of the victims, and its sympathy and support for all those affected by the earthquake. The epicentre was about 500 kilometres from both the ALMA/APEX and Paranal sites. No casualties among ESO staff have been reported, and no damage to any ESO facilities, but this is affecting staff with families and friends in the north of Chile. Some of the staff at Paranal come from the most affected regions in Iquique and Arica. To our knowledge all staff currently on site have in the meantime been able to contact ...
ann14025-en-gb — Announcement
The Messenger No. 155 Now Available
28 March 2014: The latest edition of ESO's quarterly journal, The Messenger, is now available online. Find out the latest news from ESO on topics ranging from new instruments to the latest science discoveries. Highlights of this edition include: Laser Guide Star Facility upgrade The calibration of ALMA using radio sources The VIMOS Ultra Deep Survey: 10 000 galaxies to study the early phases of galaxy assembly at 2 < z < 6+ When VLT meets HST: The HUGS survey Celebrating 50 years of ESO in Chile Download The Messenger in PDF format or visit The Messenger website to subscribe and receive a free printed copy.
ann14024-en-gb — Announcement
New Countries Join ESO Science Outreach Network
28 March 2014: The ESO Science Outreach Network (ESON) has grown wider following the appointment of national representatives for Hungary, Serbia and Australia. The network now covers 30 countries, including the 15 ESO Member States. The core of the ESO website is now available in 21 different languages. Press releases are translated into 18 different languages, and the Pictures of the Week and announcements are also being made available in more languages. The nodes of the ESO Science Outreach Network act as ESO’s local media and outreach contacts, with the general aim of promoting ESO's mission and demonstrating the many inspirational aspects of astronomy. They also serve as contacts between the media and scientists in their local area and can also be approached in connection with ESO’s projects and other science outreach initiatives. The 30 countries in the ESO Science Outreach Network are the 15 ESO Member States: Austria, Brazil, Belgium, the Czech ...
ann14023-en-gb — Announcement
ESO Ultra HD Expedition Begins
27 March 2014: ESO's Ultra HD Expedition team have begun their journey to capture ESO's three unique observing sites in Chile in all their grandeur. ESO's videographer Herbert Zodet and three ESO Photo Ambassadors, Yuri Beletsky, Christoph Malin and Babak Tafreshi are equipped with powerful Ultra HD tools [1] supplied by the technology's front runners [2]. The expedition provides an opportunity to demonstrate this state-of-the-art technology and to deliver crisp, breathtaking Ultra HD footage — bringing the Universe closer than ever before. The team continues to share their personal accounts of their 17-day adventure on the ESO Ultra HD Expedition blog and you can follow their travels through the journey schedule as the expedition unfolds. The team have now reached ESO's Paranal Observatory in northern Chile, home to the Very Large Telescope array (VLT) — ESO's flagship facility for European ground-based astronomy. Next, they will drive to ALMA, the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array ...
ann14022-en-gb — Announcement
ESOcast 64: First Ring System Around an Asteroid
26 March 2014: This episode of the ESOcast presents the recent discovery that the remote asteroid Chariklo is surrounded by two dense and narrow rings. Telescopes at seven locations in South America, including the 1.54-metre Danish and TRAPPIST telescopes at ESO’s La Silla Observatory in Chile were used to make this surprise discovery in the outer Solar System. This unique finding has sparked much interest and debate since it is the smallest object by far to have rings and only the fifth body in the Solar System — after the much larger planets Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune — to have this feature. Astronomers think that this sort of ring is likely to be formed from debris left over after a collision. The story of this unique and unexpected discovery is told in ESOcast 64: First Ring System Around an Asteroid. More episodes of the ESOcast are also available. Find out how to ...
ann14021-en-gb — Announcement
Media Advisory: Press Conference in Brazil to Announce Discovery in Outer Solar System
25 March 2014: An international team of astronomers, led by Felipe Braga-Ribas (Observatório Nacional/MCTI, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil), has used telescopes at seven locations in South America, including the 1.54-metre Danish and TRAPPIST telescopes at ESO’s La Silla Observatory in Chile, to make a surprise discovery in the outer Solar System. This unexpected result raises several unanswered questions and is expected to provoke much debate. A press conference will be held in Brazil to present the new results and allow opportunities for questions. Note that all information regarding these findings is under strict embargo until 19:00 CET (15:00 BRT) on Wednesday 26 March 2014. When: The conference will be held on 26 March 2014 at 14:30 local time (BRT) and will take place in Portuguese with a summary in English. Who: The conference presenters are: Felipe Braga-Ribas, Observatório Nacional/MCTI, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil Bruno Sicardy, LESIA, Observatoire de Paris, CNRS, Paris, France Prof. ...
ann14020-en-gb — Announcement
Powerful New Laser Passes Key Test
24 March 2014: A new 22-watt laser has now been accepted from the system supplier TOPTICA and its partner MPB following nearly five years of sustained collaboration and effort (see ann1045, ann1048, ann11039, ann12012 and ESOcast 34). This laser system will form part of the Adaptive Optics Facility at ESO’s Very Large Telescope (VLT) [1]. This laser, and four further similar units (including one spare) that will be delivered later, constitute key elements of the new facility and this acceptance marks a major step forward for the project. Five years ago the options for obtaining high power, reliable lasers in a compact format suitable for the requirements of the Adaptive Optics Facility were very limited. But now new technology and dedicated research and development have changed the landscape. After three months of acceptance testing at ESO, the project team was very happy with the performance of the new hardware, which holds great promise for simple ...
ann14019-en-gb — Announcement
Road to Armazones Started
14 March 2014: The civil works for the European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT) have begun. The Chilean company, ICAFAL Ingeniería y Construcción S.A. (ICAFAL), has started construction of a road to the summit of Cerro Armazones. Currently there is no paved road from the public highway to the top of the mountain. The road construction work is expected to take 16 months and will provide access to the summit for the future construction work on the giant telescope. Once complete, the road will be 11 metres wide in total, with an asphalt paved driveway of 7 metres width.  ICAFAL will also be responsible for the levelling of the top of the mountain later this year and additional civil works. The peak must be modified to create a platform to construct the telescope and other supporting facilities. The start of telescope operations is planned for early in the next decade, when the E-ELT will ...
ann14018-en-gb — Announcement
ESO Remains World’s Most Productive Ground-based Observatory
14 March 2014: A survey of the number of peer-reviewed scientific papers published in 2013 using data from ESO’s telescopes and instruments has shown that ESO remains the world’s most productive ground-based observatory. Astronomers used observational data from ESO facilities to produce 840 refereed papers last year. The number of papers published from ESO data in 2013 has even remained slightly higher than the number of papers using data from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. Nearly 70% of all papers credited to ESO in 2013 used data acquired using the Very Large Telescope (VLT) or VLT Interferometer facilities. The most productive VLT instruments in terms of papers remain FORS2 and UVES. X-shooter also showed a steep increase in the number of publications and has produced a total of almost 170 papers from 2010 to 2013. Other facilities at the La Silla Paranal Observatory — including the survey telescope VISTA at Paranal, as well ...
ann14017-en-gb — Announcement
Incoming President of Chile Michelle Bachelet Meets Senior ESO Representatives
12 March 2014: The ESO Director General, Tim de Zeeuw, together with ESO Council President Xavier Barcons, ESO Representative in Chile Fernando Comerón, and Director of Operations Andreas Kaufer met Michelle Bachelet, the incoming President of Chile, on 10 March 2014, the day before her inauguration. The delegation passed on their congratulations, and looked forward to a fruitful and productive collaboration between ESO and its host nation. This meeting took place at the Academia Diplomática de Chile (Diplomatic Academy of Chile) where Michelle Bachelet also held meetings with several high level organisations and delegations from all over the world who had been invited to the ceremonies marking the handover of power in Chile.    Later in the afternoon, Fernando Comerón and Tim de Zeeuw attended an official reception with the outgoing President of Chile, Sebastián Piñera, at the Palacio de La Moneda in Santiago, where they had the opportunity of personally thanking him ...
ann14016-en-gb — Announcement
Win a trip to Paranal in the Photo Nightscape Awards 2014
7 March 2014: ESO invites you to take part in the first edition of the Photo Nightscape Awards (PNA) —  an international photo nightscape competition to celebrate astrophotography. As a partner in the competition organised by Ciel et Espace Photos, ESO will award the winner of the professional category with a trip to Paranal, home of the Very Large Telescope (VLT) and part of the Paranal-Armazones complex, which is under construction.   For this first edition of the awards, the categories “Pro” and “Espoir” (Hope) will be available. The Pro category is open to all photographers from across the world who have already published or sold any photographs, whereas the category Espoir is for photographers that hold French nationality and who have previously neither sold nor published their photographs. Those who wish to take part in the competition should submit a registration form and, if they are under age, a parental consent form. ...
ann14015-en-gb — Announcement
French Actress Juliette Binoche and Irish Actor Gabriel Byrne Visit ESO’s Chilean Sites
4 March 2014: Award-winning French actress Juliette Binoche and Irish actor Gabriel Byrne visited ESO’s Paranal Observatory in northern Chile on 22 February 2014. Juliette Binoche then travelled on to visit ALMA on 24 February. Famed for their performances in many successful films, Juliette Binoche and Gabriel Byrne expressed an interest in visiting the most prominent observatories during their free time in northern Chile. They are currently shooting an upcoming film named The 33 — based on the dramatic true story of the miners who were successfully rescued after many weeks trapped underground following an accident at the San José mine in 2010. The actress and actor were hosted at Paranal by ESO's Director of Administration Patrick Geeraert and ESO's Representative in Chile Fernando Comerón. Arriving in time to watch the sunset at Cerro Paranal on 22 February, they saw the opening of the VLT domes as they prepared for the night ahead. Juliette Binoche and Gabriel ...
ann14014-en-gb — Announcement
ESOcast 63: Flexible Giants — The Evolution of Telescope Mirrors
19 February 2014: In our latest episode of the ESOcast, we delve into the history of telescope mirrors and their evolution over time. Enormous telescope mirrors allow astronomers to peer much deeper into the night sky than the tiny light-collecting area of the human eye permits. In this episode, the reason for the ever-growing size of telescopes is explored as the story behind these flexible giants is told. The challenges of building larger yet lighter mirrors have paved the way for innovative thinking and have consequently led to telescope designs such as ESO’s New Technology Telescope (NTT) and the future European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT). To find out how and why such designs revolutionised telescope mirror design, explore the past, present and future of telescope mirror design in ESOcast 63: Flexible Giants — The Evolution of Telescope Mirrors. More Information The ESOcast is a video podcast series dedicated to bringing you the latest ...
ann14013-en-gb — Announcement
Exoplanet Imager SPHERE Shipped to Chile
18 February 2014: SPHERE — the Spectro-Polarimetric High-contrast Exoplanet REsearch instrument — is a powerful new facility for finding and studying exoplanets. The instrument has recently successfully completed testing in France, passed preliminary acceptance by ESO, and has now been shipped to Chile. It will then be installed on ESO’s Very Large Telescope (VLT) and first light is foreseen for May 2014. SPHERE was built by a consortium of astronomers and engineers in many ESO states in conjunction with industry [1]. The consortium is led by the Institut de Planétologie et d'Astrophysique de Grenoble, France. SPHERE’s main goal is to find and characterise giant exoplanets orbiting nearby stars by direct imaging [2]. This is an extremely challenging task as such planets are both very close to their parent stars in the sky and also very much fainter. In a normal image, even in the best conditions, the light from the star totally swamps ...
Showing 61 to 80 of 530