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Zooming in on the unusual double star SS Leporis
This zoom sequence starts with a broad view of the spectacular Milky Way. We close in on the small constellation of Lepus (The Hare), next to the familiar figure of Orion (The Hunter) and focus on the star, SS Leporis, which is faintly visible to the unaided eye. The final stage takes an extraordinarily close look at this unusual double star using the VLT Interferometer at ESO’s Paranal Observatory. These remarkably sharp images — 50 times sharper than those from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope — not only allow astronomers to watch the two stars in orbit around each other, but also show the larger of the two as a clear disc.