Model of ESO's Very Large Telescope
A model of the Very Large Telescope (VLT) in the Safety Building at the entrance of European Southern Observatory (ESO) on Cerro Paranal mountain in Chile’s Atacama Desert.
From left to right, their names are:
UT1: Antu – which means The Sun
UT2: Kueyen – which means The Moon
UT3: Melipal- which means The Southern Cross
UT4: Yepun – which means Venus
Their names comes from the original Mapuche language of Southern Chile.
Each of these Unit Telescopes (UT) have a mirror of 8,2 meters in diameter, and the smaller white round Auxiliary Telescopes (AT) have a mirror of 1,8 meters in diameter.
All together the UTs and ATs form the Very Large Telescope – or VLT for short – which is one of the most powerfull telescopes man has ever built (produces even better images than Hubble Space Telescope)!!
However most of the time each of the 8 telescopes operate independently of each other, and each of the 4 UTs has 2 different instruments mounted for various observations.
When combined they work as light collectors and redirect the light through the floor to underground tunnels and lots of additional mirrors to the small gray VLTI building in the middle where the Very Large Telescope Interferometer is located.
The UTs are fixed where as the ATs can move to 30 different locations dependent of the need to observe wide or deep into Space.