When the evening twilight was fading to darkness above La Palma in Canary Islands, this 300-degree panoramic image captured the sky above some of the world’s major telescopes in Roque de los Muchachos observatory, located at the top of the island about 2400 meters above sea level. On the left (south) the bright central bulge of the Milky Way in the constellations Scorpius and Sagittarius is captured above the lower clouds which are lit by the nearby town Los Llanos de Adriane. Continue to the right and you find the setting crescent moon in the fading twilight over the west. The moon is accompanied by planet Saturn (upper right of the moon) and bright star Spica in Virgo. Below the moon sits the 3.6 meter TNG (Telescopio Nazionale Galileo, belongs to Italy). To its right is one of the world’s largest telescopes, the 10.4 m GTC (Gran Telescopio Canarias) which belongs to Spain. The Ursa Major (Big Bear) with its seven brighter stars which forms the famous asterism Big Dipper is notable in the middle toward the north. There are about a dozen major telescopes on this excellent observing site. More of them are visible on the right below the autumn Milky Way. They are located at the edge of cloud-covered giant volcanic caldera of the island. Telescopes in this part from the left to right includes: the 2.5m NOT or Nordic Optical Telescope, the 4.2m William Herschel Telescope, the two solar towers (Dutch Open Telescope and the Swedish Solar Telescope), the 2,5m Isaac Newton Telescope (INT) and at last the 1-meter Jacobus Kapteyn Telescope. The panorama ends at right (south east) in the light from the larger island of Tenerife.



comments (9)

  • Alireza Hassani Reply

    what cause the shinig of sky at left side upper than Horizon Mr.Tafreshi?

    November 9, 2011 at 2:06 am
  • Babak Tafreshi Reply

    Alireza: it’s a small town in the island only 10km away below the observatory. The town light is blocked and scattered by the clouds.

    November 9, 2011 at 6:32 am
  • Josef Hermans Reply

    Great awsome picture. feeling smal.:)

    November 10, 2011 at 4:10 pm
  • Negar Najafi Reply

    It’s really beautiful but if there were no light pollution from the town,it would be more amazing.
    Anyway thanks a lot!

    November 16, 2011 at 11:32 am
  • Bernard AUGIER Reply

    Thank You For Sharing

    November 28, 2011 at 1:00 am
  • samira Reply

    wooooow thanks so much mr tafreshi
    it is a very nice pic
    thank you

    December 26, 2011 at 10:04 am
  • skycastle Reply

    the starry sky is amazing, so is the sea of clouds.

    May 23, 2012 at 8:53 am
  • Derek Chapman Reply

    What shutter speed/exposure was used to get this shot?

    June 15, 2012 at 2:01 pm
  • Babak Tafreshi Reply

    Thank you all for the feedback. This is a stitched panorama, all the individual frames are made with 25s exposure at ISO 1600.

    June 16, 2012 at 4:58 am

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