Historical photographs

Gamma Telescope Space observation

Gamma Telescope Space observation


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Most terrestrial telescopes with lenses and mirrors are influenced by the dense and protective atmosphere that makes images blur and absorb much of the light.

But this telescope has been designed to detect the end of gamma rays (photons with more than 100 billion times the energy of visible light) and in fact it needs the atmosphere to operate. As gamma rays impact the high layers of the atmosphere, they produce high-energy particle rains.

Decorated with 382 independent mirrors of about 60 centimeters each, and equipped with a fast camera, the telescope records in detail the brief optical light flashes, called Cherenkov light, created by that rain of particles.

The photography telescope was inaugurated in September 2002 and is expected to be part of the High Energy Stereoscopic System (HESS) built in Namibia. The initial phase of the HESS consists of four telescopes working together to provide multiple stereoscopic views of these rains, relative to energies from cosmic gamma rays.

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