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University Observatory Munich

Faculty of Physics at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University

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How will the ELT explore the Universe?

ESO released the record of the live public event about the ELT and two of its first generation instruments, MICADO and METIS.

ESO's Extremely Large Telescope (ELT) is the revolutionary ground-based telescope currently under construction in Chile. It will be the largest optical/infrared telescope in the world, with its 39-meter diameter main mirror.

MICADO, the near-infrared Multi-AO Imaging Camera for Deep Observations, is designated as First Light Instrument of the ELT. The instrument will offer diffraction-limited imaging and spectroscopy modes in combination with single- or multi-conjugated adaptive optics.

The Universitäts-Sternwarte München (USM) is part of the MICADO consortium and is deeply contributing to the development of the MICADO instrument, being responsible of several working packages, including Software, Electronics, Optics and Cryo-Mechanics contributions.

The USM contribution to the MICADO Project is funded through the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and PT-DESY under grants 05A11WM1, 05A14WM1 and 05A17WM1, which are gratefully acknowledged.


Jupiter images taken in Munich as rotating animation

(click on the gif for a mp4 with 746 kB)
Jupiter's entire surface, taken with the Fraunhofer 28cm refractor (built 1835) at the University Observatory Munich by Felix Langgassner.
The animation consists of 14 separately processed results, taken on 5 different days (between 25/8/2022 and 13/9/2022) over several hours of observation time each. Altogether probably at least 1.2 million single images were collected for the whole Jupiter. The images were taken in the green filter on the Fraunhofer 28 cm refractor with a monochromatic (b/w) camera. The colors were taken at the same time with an 8 inch telescope. Its images are much less detailed, but are sufficient to colorize the monochrome images from the refractor.


Filament of 50 million light years long

Vergleich eRosita/Magneticum

More than half of the matter in our Universe has so far eluded our view. Astrophysicists have predicted, however, where it might be: in so-called filaments, unimaginably long structures made of hot gas that surround and connect galaxies and galaxy clusters. These filaments of hot gas in the computer simulations by Dr. Veronica Biffi and PD Dr. Klaus Dolag at the University Observatory Munich and the ORIGINS Cluster of Excellence are strikingly similar in their structure to the 50 million light years long filament which has now been observed for the first time by a team led by the University of Bonn using the eROSITA space telescope. While these observations confirm the models of the origin and development of our Universe, the simulations allow an interpretation of the results that recently appeared in the journal Astronomy & Astrophysics, shedding new light on the origin of these structures.


Mars image with the Fraunhofer refractor

Mars image

This image shows our neighboring planet Mars in the night from October 19 to 20, 2020, observed with the historic 28.5-cm Fraunhofer refractor (built in 1835) from the garden of the University Observatory in Munich. The achromat with Fraunhofer objective allows impressive color images of planets in the middle of the big city.

Felix Langgassner (Bachelor student) took this image 6 days after Mars opposition (13. 10. 2020).

Mars has a distance of 64 million km and an apparent diameter of 22 arcseconds on this image. Besides Solis Lacus (the big "eye of Mars" in the center a bit to the right) and foothills of Valles Marineris (darker overlying "branch" in the upper right third), Olympus Mons (26,000 m high, diameter 600 km) is also well visible in the middle of the faint white spot with darker center (at 10 o'clock near the Martian limb).

With the color camera ZWO ASI 224MC Felix Langgassner recorded 17.771 images with 1/57 sec exposure time each. Afterwards the best 30% were combined with "Autostakkert" and sharpened with "RegiStax".

Last updated 2023 May 15 17:06 UTC by Webmaster (webmaster@usm.uni-muenchen.de)