La Silla observatory. European Southern Observa- tory site at La Silla, Chile, seen from the 3.6- metre telescope dome. In the foreground is the dome of this telescope's 1.4-metre CAT auxiliary telescope. In the middle distance the Future Swiss Telescope is under construction (at lower left) close to the 3.5-metre New Technology Telescope. The domes along the ridge in the background house telescopes with mirrors up to 2.2 metres in diameter. The high altitude of La Silla (2400 metres), and the clear air above it, make the site an ideal location for astronomical observations because atmospheric distortions to incoming light are reduced. Photographed in 1997.
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