Press Releases

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eso9513-en-us — Photo Release
An Infrared Image of Bright Comet 1995 Q1
19 August 1995: The newly discovered, bright Comet 1995 Q1 was again observed at La Silla last night (18 - 19 August 1995).
eso9512-en-us — Science Release
Bright Comet 1995 Q1
18 August 1995: In the evening of August 17, 1995, famous comet hunter William Bradfield (Australia) discovered his seventeenth comet. He found the comet as a 6th magnitude object with a tail longer than 1 degree in the southern constellation Crater.
eso9511-en-us — Science Release
Beyond the Hubble Constant
17 August 1995: A few months ago, a violent stellar explosion -- a supernova -- was discovered in an extremely distant galaxy by an international team of astronomers [1]. This is the very promising first result of a recently initiated, dedicated search for such objects. Subsequent spectral observations have shown this to be the most distant supernova ever observed. Although it is very faint, it has been possible to classify it as a supernova of Type Ia, a kind that is particularly well suited for cosmological distance determinations.
eso9510-en-us — Organisation Release
Earthquake in Antofagasta
2 August 1995: The Antofagasta Earthquake of last Sunday, July 30, 1:15 hours, violently shook Cerro Paranal, the site where ESO, the European Southern Observatory, is building the VLT, the world's largest optical telescope. The quake's intensity in Paranal was estimated at grade 8 on the Richter scale.
eso9509-en-us — Science Release
ROSAT Discovers Unique, Distant Cluster of Galaxies
19 June 1995: Based on exciting new data obtained with the ROSAT X-ray satellite and a ground-based telescope at the ESO La Silla Observatory, a team of European astronomers [2] has just discovered a very distant cluster of galaxies with unique properties. It emits the strongest X-ray emission of any cluster ever observed by ROSAT and is accompanied by two extraordinarily luminous arcs that represent the gravitationally deflected images of even more distant objects. The combination of these unusual characteristics makes this cluster, now known as RXJ1347.5-1145, a most interesting object for further cosmological studies.
eso9508-en-us — Organisation Release
ESO Council Resolves to Continue VLT Project at Paranal
8 June 1995: The ESO Council has just met at the ESO Headquarters in Garching during two days of intensive consultations. Among the important items on the agenda were the recent developments around the Very Large Telescope Project at Paranal, and also the possible membership of other countries.
eso9507-en-us — Organisation Release
"Europe Towards the Stars"
7 June 1995: With the above title, and following the very successful events of the past two years [1], ESO again organises an "educational adventure" in 1995. It takes place within the framework of the "Third European Week for Scientific and Technological Culture", initiated and supported by the European Commission. This time ESO will invite about fifty 17-18 year old grammar school pupils with their teachers to try their skills at one of the world's most advanced astronomical telescopes.
eso9506-en-us — Organisation Release
Giat Industries selected for construction of the "Very Large Telescope"
2 June 1995: Versailles-Satory (France) May 31, 1995 - Giat Industries has just obtained a contract from the European Southern Observatory (ESO) for the construction of the primary and tertiary mirror supports and the positioning apparatus of the world's largest optical telescope. This contract, worth almost 140 million francs, represents over 100,000 hours of work. It was won by Gitech, a division of Giat Industries, in collaboration with the Sfim group, following an international competition between the largest European groups in the space field. Gitech is charged with the development of civil and military industrial equipment for the Giat Industries group, in particular in high technology fields.
eso9505-en-us — Organisation Release
Decisions by the ESO Council
19 April 1995: Today, Wednesday, 19 April 1995, the ESO Council [1] met in extraordinary session at the ESO Headquarters in Garching (Germany) to discuss the recent developments which have affected the operations of this Organisation in its host state, the Republic of Chile [2].
eso9504-en-us — Organisation Release
Current Discussions Between ESO and Chile
18 April 1995: Today, Tuesday, 18 April 1995, at the ESO Headquarters in Garching (Germany), Mr. Roberto Cifuentes, Plenipotentiary Ambassador representing the Government of the Republic of Chile, and the Director General of the European Southern Observatory, Professor Riccardo Giacconi, have signed a Supplementary, Interpretative and Amending Agreement to the Convention of 6 November 1963 which governs the relations between Chile and this International Organisation. This Agreement which in practice signifies a widening and strengthening of the cooperative relations between the Organisation and the Chilean scientific community will hereafter be submitted for ratification by the National Congress of the Republic of Chile (the Parliament) and by the ESO Council.
eso9503-en-us — Organisation Release
Violation of Iinternational Law on Paranal
31 March 1995: Yesterday, 30 March 1995 at 12:40 h Chilean time, a Chilean court official, Mr. Javier Jimenez, Receptor Indicial, accompanied by Chilean Carabinieros, forced an entry to the premises of ESO on Cerro Paranal without permission of ESO and without agreement between the Chilean Government and ESO, although warned that this act was in violation of the status of ESO as an international organization on the basis of the 1963 Convention and subsequent agreements between the Government of Chile and ESO.
eso9502-en-us — Organisation Release
ESO's Situation in Chile
20 February 1995: ESO, the European Southern Observatory, in reply to questions raised by the international media, as well as an ongoing debate about the so-called "Paranal case" in Chilean newspapers, would like to make a number of related observations concerning its status and continued operation in that country [1].
eso9501-en-us — Organisation Release
Whatever happened when comet SL-9 hit Jupiter? Newest results to be presented at ESO.
1 February 1995: The newest results of the associated investigations will be discussed at a scientific Workshop at ESO and presented to the media at a subsequent Press Conference on February 15, 1995.
eso9418-en-us — Organisation Release
Europe's Astronomy Teachers Meet at ESO
2 December 1994: A joint EU/ESO Workshop (1) on the Teaching of Astronomy in Europe was held at the ESO Headquarters from November 25-30, 1994, under the auspices of the 1994 European Week for Scientific Culture. More than 100 teachers from secondary schools in 17 European countries participated together with representatives of national ministries and local authorities, as well as professional astronomers.
eso9417-en-us — Science Release
First Observations of Solar-Like Oscillations in Another Star (1)
23 November 1994: A group of astronomers from the Aarhus University (Denmark) and the European Southern Observatory (2) have for the first time succeeded in detecting solar-type oscillations in another star. They observed the temperature of the bright northern star Eta Bootis during six nights with the 2.5-metre Nordic Optical Telescope at the Roque de los Muchachos observatory on the island of La Palma (Canary Islands) and were able to show that it varies periodically by a few hundredths of a degree. These changes are caused by pressure waves in the star and are directly dependent on its inner structure. A detailed analysis by the astronomers has shown that the observed effects are in good agreement with current stellar models. This is a most important, independent test of stellar theory.
eso9416-en-us — Organisation Release
Astronomy Teaching in Europe's Secondary Schools
15 November 1994: A joint Workshop of the European Union (EU) and the European Southern Observatory (ESO) will take place on November 25 - 30, 1994 under the auspices of the European Week for Scientific Culture. The Workshop is entitled "Astronomy: Science, Culture and Technology". It will bring together at the ESO Headquarters in Garching (Germany) more than 100 secondary school teachers and ministerial representatives from 17 European countries to discuss all aspects of this broad subject. It is the first and very visible part of a new, sustained effort to stimulate and modernize the teaching of the subjects of Astronomy and Astrophysics in European secondary schools. During the Workshop, the participants will experience the present state of this multi-disciplinary science in its most general context, that is as a human, long-term scientific and technological endeavour with great cultural implications. They will exchange views on how the various elements of Astronomy can best be utilized within the educational schemes of the individual countries, both as subjects in their own rights, and especially in support of many other items on the present teaching agenda.
eso9415-en-us — Photo Release
Transneptunian Object 1994 TG2
31 October 1994: This photo shows the faint image (arrow) of a new transneptunian object, discovered with the ESO 3.5-metre New Technology Telescope in October 1994. It is here seen in a negative reproduction (dark stars on white sky) of the CCD frame on which it was first noticed.
eso9414-en-us — Organisation Release
Full Speed Ahead for ESO's Very Large Telescope
29 September 1994: During the past months, vast progress has been made in the construction of ESO's 16-metre equivalent Very Large Telescope (VLT). This major scientific and technological project aims at installing the world's largest optical telescope in the form of four interconnected telescopes with 8.2-metre mirrors on the Paranal mountain in the Chilean Atacama desert. It continues to be on schedule as it heads towards its completion, just after the year 2000.
eso9413-en-us — Organisation Release
ESO Council Decides to Continue VLT Project at Paranal
9 August 1994: The Council [1] of the European Southern Observatory has met in extraordinary session at the ESO Headquarters in Garching near Munich on August 8 and 9, 1994. The main agenda items were concerned with the recent developments around ESO's relations with the host state, the Republic of Chile, as well as the status of the organisation's main project, the 16-metre equivalent Very Large Telescope (VLT) which will become the world's largest optical telescope.
eso9412-en-us — Organisation Release
Relations Between Chile and ESO
10 June 1994: As announced in an earlier Press Release (eso9408), a high-ranking ESO delegation visited Santiago de Chile during the week of 24 - 28 May 1994 to discuss various important matters of mutual interest with the Chilean Government. It consisted of Dr. Peter Creola (President of ESO Council), Dr. Catherine Cesarsky (Vice-President of ESO Council), Dr. Henrik Grage (Former Vice-President of ESO Council) and Professor Riccardo Giacconi (ESO Director General), the latter accompanied by his advisers.
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