Media Advisory: press conference on the world's most efficient spectrograph

On 25 May 2009, ESO, along with the Paris Observatory and the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS), will hold a press conference to present X-shooter, the world's most efficient astronomical spectrograph. Attached to ESO's Very Large Telescope (VLT), it will contribute to Europe's continuing excellence in astronomy.

X-shooter is the first of the second generation VLT instruments. It can record the entire spectrum of a celestial object in one shot &mdash from the ultraviolet to the near-infrared with great sensitivity. This unique new instrument will be particularly useful for the study of the most powerful explosions in the Universe &mdash gamma-ray bursts &mdash whose distance and spectrum are not known in advance.

Monday 25 May 2009, 14:30 CEST

Council Room of the Paris Observatory

The panelists will be:

  • Laurent Vigroux (President of the ESO Council): The current golden age of European astronomical research;
  • Sandro D'Odorico (ESO, Head of the ELT Instrumentation Project Office): X-shooter, a unique instrument;
  • François Hammer (Paris Observatory, principal investigator in France of X-shooter): Science with X-shooter.


Danish, Italian and Dutch scientists involved in X-shooter, as well as the ESO X-shooter project manager and instrument scientist, will also be available for further comments and interviews.

Entrance: 77 av. Denfert Rochereau, Paris 14e
RSVP:, +33 (0)1 40 51 23 01



Henri Boffin
+49 89 3200 6222