ESOshop: Poster: VLT's Laser and the Magellanic Clouds

This spectacular image shows Yepun, the fourth 8.2-metre Unit Telescope of ESO’s Very Large Telescope (VLT) facility, launching a powerful yellow laser beam into the sky. The beam creates a glowing spot — an artificial star — in the Earth’s atmosphere by exciting a layer of sodium atoms at an altitude of 90 km. This Laser Guide Star (LGS) is part of the VLT’s adaptive optics system. The light coming back from the artificial star is used as a reference to control the deformable mirrors and remove the effects of atmospheric distortions, producing astronomical images almost as sharp as if the telescope were in space. Read more about this image in the ESO image archive.

Credit:

ESO/B. Tafreshi (twanight.org)

Note: The digital resources (images, videos, PDFs, etc.) for this product can be downloaded in the archive

Price: € 4,99

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Product details

IDprint_poster_0055
Dimensions59 cm (W) x 87.5 cm (H)

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See the ESO Shop Catalogue.


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