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Istituto italiano di astrofisica - national institute for astrophisics

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The Hercules fighting galaxies

A new spectacular image from the VST (VLT Survey Telescope) the Italian instrument realized from INAF - OA Capodimonte in collaboration with ESO.

Galaxies merge to form a larger galaxy. The phenomenon captured in this image from the VST (VLT Survey Telescope) of ESO's Paranal Observatory in Chile. We are in the cluster of galaxies of Hercules. The sharpness of the new picture, and the hundreds of galaxies captured in great detail in less than three hours of observations, attest to the great power of the VST and its huge camera OmegaCAM to explore the nearby Universe.

The VST programme is a joint venture between the INAF–Osservatorio Astronomico di Capodimonte, and ESO. INAF designed and built the telescope with the collaboration of leading Italian industries and ESO was responsible for the enclosure and the civil engineering works at the site. OmegaCAM, the VST’s camera, was designed and built by a consortium including institutes in the Netherlands, Germany and Italy with major contributions from ESO. The facility is operated by ESO, which also archives and distributes data from the telescope.

"A spectacular image, says Massimo Capaccioli, PI and member of the Board of VST INAF, which testifies the excellent quality of the instrument. We are waiting the first scientific results of VST + OmegaCam, and then, I guess, we will have some fashining surprise".

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