ESO, the European Southern Observatory, marked its 50th anniversary today (5 October) with activities in its 15 ESO Member States as well as with a special live broadcast of observations from the ESO Very Large Telescope (VLT) made -- for the first time -- of an object chosen by the public: the spectacular Thor's Helmet Nebula.
"ESO has built an impressive legacy through its 50 years observing our universe," said SPIE CEO Eugene Arthurs. "Founded with a vision of international cooperation, it has set the tone for the team-based approach that makes astronomy the rich area of scientific inquiry it is today. SPIE congratulates ESO and its member countries, with best wishes for another 50 years of exciting discoveries."
Researchers from ESO are key to SPIE efforts in hosting major astronomy events. The 2012 symposium on Astronomical Telescopes and Instrumentation included numerous conference chairs from the organization: Roberto Gilmozzi, Francoise Delplancke, Suzanne Ramsay, Enrico Marchetti, Fernando Comeron, Philippe Dierickx, and Gianluca Chiozzi, and Mark Casali served as a sympoisum chair. The featured dinner speaker at the July event was ESO's Jason Spyromilio.
Read more about the ESO and the VLT, and view the anniversary broadcast via the SPIE Newsroom.