AMBER - Astronomical Multi-BEam combineR


AMBER is the near-infrared spectro-interferometric instrument of the VLT interferometer. It operates in the H and K band (i.e. 1.6 to 2.4 μm). The instrument was designed to combine coherently three telescopic beams, allowing to measure visibilities and closure phases. Its angular resolution is set by the maximum separation of the telescopes and the field of view of the instrument. AMBER is able to resolve features between 2mas (milli-arcsecond) and 50 mas either with the  UTs, or with the ATs.

AMBER can be used with the external fringe tracker FINITO. On the UTs it is possible to reach 9th magnitude in K in the best conditions and in low spectral resolution. On the AT's, the limiting magnitude is K=6.5. The complete pre-requisites for AMBER service observations and the most magnitude limits can be found on the instrument description page.


Publications based on data obtained with the AMBER instrument should quote the following reference paper:
Petrov, R.G., et al. AMBER, the near-infrared spectro-interferometric three-telescope VLTI instrument, 2007, A&A, Vol. 464, Issue 1, pp.1-12.

Contact Information

  • Questions related to service mode observations and proposal preparation should be addressed to the User Support Department.
  • Questions related to visitor mode observations should be addressed to Paranal Science Operations
  • Questions related to AMBER should be addressed to the AMBER account
  • Please send us your comments, suggestions and report errors and inaccurate statements in the web pages and manuals.

See also the Instrument Operation Team and the AMBER Consortium web pages.

Content of these pages

The following items are available on all the AMBER pages, using the bar on the left.

  • News: list of changes affecting the instrument and/or its pages.
  • Overview: a short description of the instrument
  • Instrument Description: all the important parameters of the instrument.
  • Manuals: links to all the documents related to AMBER.
  • Tools: a collection of useful tools and informations for preparing and analyzing the AMBER observations.
  • Instrument Operations Team
  • Links: miscellaneous links about interferometry and AMBER.
  • Visitor Instructions: Instrument specific instructions for Visiting Astronomers
  • Consortium: A list of the AMBER Consortium contributing Institutes.