ESO and ESA Reach Agreement to Site Test-Bed Telescope at La Silla

In August 2015, ESO and the European Space Agency (ESA) signed a cooperation agreement setting the terms and conditions for mutual cooperation and the exchange of scientific research information between the two organisations. The first project to be implemented under this cooperation agreement is the deployment of a Test-Bed Telescope at ESO’s La Silla Observatory in northern Chile.

Operating alongside a similar project in the northern hemisphere, the 56-cm Test-Bed Telescope (TBT) will act as a precursor to a fully autonomous optical sensor network which will detect and track an extensive list of near-Earth objects, such as asteroids. The TBT will demonstrate the instrument’s hardware and software capabilities, such as automatic scheduling, remote real-time control, and autonomous data processing.

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