Aerial view of Cerro Paranal
This aerial view of Cerro Paranal, the site of ESO's Very Large Telescope, was obtained in mid-September
1994. It shows the rapid developments on the top during the current construction of the concrete base for the four telescope enclosures, as well as the complex infrastructure for the various associated laboratories. The work is carried out by the Skanska/Belfi consortium for ESO. The installations for the technical equipment can be seen to the left.
The blasting work has now been terminated and the excavations for the various connecting tunnels are clearly visible; they will again be covered, when the concrete work is ready. To the right, the work on the base for Unit Telescope no. 1 is already well under way and has now reached the "floor level" on which the enclosure will be placed, the basement concrete floor on which the coude focus for Telescope no. 2 will be installed is in place, and the concrete work will soon start in the holes for Telescopes 3 and 4.
To the extreme right and a little lower than the rest of the platform is the excavation for the control building. The platform altitude is about 2640 metres above sea level and it measures about 150 metres across. The width of the access road is no less than 12 metres, i.e. nearly equal to that of a three-lane highway; this is necessary to ensure the safe transport of all telescope parts, especially the four 8.2-metre fragile mirrors, to the top.
About the Image
|Release date:||29 September 1994|
|Size:||400 x 287 px|
About the Object