PHILIPPE PLAILLY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PHILIPPE PLAILLY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
HESS gamma ray telescope mirrors. The HESS (High Energy Stereoscopic System) array, located in Namibia, uses four telescope like this one. The telescopes are Imaging Atmospheric Cherenkov Telescopes (IACTs), and they detect the flashes of Cherenkov radiation produced as high-energy gamma rays and cosmic rays hit the Earth's atmosphere. The HESS array is used to investigate gamma ray sources such as supernova remnants and pulsars. The telescopes use hundreds of mirrors (round), each 60 centimetres in diameter and made of aluminised glass with a silica coating. The HESS array has been operational since December 2003. Photographed in January 2006.
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