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First images with the VLT Survey Telescope - VST and 268 megapixel OmegaCAM start work

08 June 2011

The VLT Survey Telescope (VST), the latest addition to ESO's Paranal Observatory, has made its first release of impressive images of the southern sky.

The VST is a state-of-the-art 2.6-metre telescope, with the huge 268-megapixel camera OmegaCAM at its heart, which has been designed under Dutch (Leiden/Groningen) leadership to map the sky both quickly and with very fine image quality.

Astro-WISE system

The data volume produced by OmegaCAM will be very large. Every year about 30 Terabyte of raw data will flow from Paranal to processing datacenters in Europe. A consortium led by OmegaCEN at the University of Groningen has developed a new advanced information system containing a grid of compute clusters, archives and databases, the Astro-WISE system.


This system will facilitate processing and analysis of the very large dataflow. Astro-WISE stores automatically not only the end-products but also all intermediate steps in processing and analysis. Everything can be accessed via the internet. 'The complex path of analysis that leads to a stunning result is just as important as the result itself. It forms the proof of the result. An astronomer can share in real-time his analysis in full detail with every colleague in the world via Astro-WISE. One can also take the (intermediate) result of a colleague as a starting point for further analysis. That is called E-Science, that is the innovation that Astro-WISE brings,' says Prof Edwin Valentijn, head of OmegaCEN .  

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Edwin Valentijn, Kapteyn Instituut, University of Groningen, tel: 050-363 4011, valentyn of Gijs Verdoes Kleijn, Kapteyn Instituut, University of Groningen, tel: 050-363 8326, verdoes

Last modified:25 January 2022 2.47 p.m.
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