A visit to Chilescope Observatory  -  August 2018

For the perihelic opposition of Mars in 2018 i had the opportunity to spend a week on a remote mountain top in the Atacama desert, Chile. The mountain top is the site of several telescopes belonging to Chilescope and Obstech. The mountain itself is sited about 20km SE of Cerro Pachon (site of the Gemini South telescope.)

During the course of my week staying on site i was able to observe and image every night bar one. Sky darkness and transparency were exceptional with stunning views of the night sky. I also had the opportunity to conduct many imaging and observing sessions using the 1m telescope of Chilescope which provided some stunning views of countless deep sky objects.

My thanks to the team at Chilescope for making this visit possible and also to the guys at Obstech for taking care of me during my stay on site.

 

Mars on August 6th

One of the best views of Mars obtained using the 1m telescope during my time on site. Dust activity visible within Valles Marineris can be seen.


Alongside the 1m telescope and a sketch made using the telescope

The 1m telescope was used extensively during the week for imaging and observations. I was able to make many observations of nebulae and galaxies including seeing vivid colour in deep sky objects for the first time.


Centre of the Milkyway over the Chilescope domes

The night sky from the observatory was an incredible sight. The photo above shows the view with a single 15sec exposure of the camera. Dome of the 1m telescope nearest the camera.


Sunset across the Chilescope domes


 

Breakfast in Santiago

After arrival we met up with Yuri Beletsky in Santiago for breakfast. From L-R: Samuel, Yuri, Myself and Vincent.

 

 


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