Aerial Armazones

Coated in a layer of ashen dust and littered with heavy equipment vehicles, the peak of Cerro Armazones appears conspicuously flattened as efforts continue to craft a platform for the European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT).

The clear skies of the Atacama provide the E-ELT with the perfect conditions to see the Universe with a sharpness far exceeding even that of the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. When operational, this statuesque telescope will lend its hand towards the hunt for habitable exoplanets, while also peering further back in time and space to reveal the mechanisms behind the formation of the first stars and galaxies. As with any great scientific venture, the unforeseeable discoveries that might arise also have an allure of their own.

When it is completed, the E-ELT will house a 39-metre main mirror, which will collect more light than all the world’s existing 8–10-metre telescopes combined. The dome containing the telescope will stand some 74 metres in height and span 86 metres in diameter: a beast by any standards, with Cerro Armazones providing the perfect seat for this monster of modern astronomy.

Credit:

ESO/G. Hüdepohl (atacamaphoto.com). Music: movetwo

About the Video

Id:potw1502a
Release date:12 January 2015, 15:16
Duration:04 m 05 s

About the Object

Name:Cerro Armazones
Type:Unspecified : Planet : Feature : Surface : Mountain
Category:ELT

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