sunset seen from Armazones
© Stéphane Guisard
"Los Cielos de Chile"
Twice per year, the sunset passes
exactly behind Paranal (1) mountain for
somebody located on the summit of Armazones
(2) mountain, 20km away
(~12.5 miles). The dates and time (3) when
this happens were calculated using coordinates of both sites found on googleearth
taking into account atmospheric effects. This picture(4) was taken in these conditions. It clearly
shows 3 of
the 4 big 8m unit telescope (UT) domes (4th one is behind
others), the VST enclosure on their right and the high meteorological
the DIMM tower on the extreme right. On the left of the picture, the
opened dome of the smaller 1.8m Auxiliary Telescope(AT)
are also visible.
The image was taken with a Takahashi
telescope, a Canon20Da camera and special Solar filters. Please remember that looking at the
Sun through an
optical device (Camera, Telescope, Binoculars etc…) is VERY dangerous,
could cause immediate blindness.
The following animated gif image was created
the lower left crops of the several images taken that day. It shows,
the AT and UT1, the movement of Paranal Staff and astronomers
daily on the telescope platform to observe the sunset and its
“green flash”…The conclusion is that you can definitively not prevent
from passing in front of your camera when taking a picture !
Paranal” is located in Northern Chile and hosts the ESO Very
Norte observatory .
want to do the calculation yourself, write
me, I will be happy to read about your “prognostic”, sorry…nothing
this picture actually came to me many years ago, during the first light
VLT, while working the night and running up the mountain during the day
colleague Lothar. It is however only
recently that I
took the time to calculate the dates for the event and take the picture.