LBT Official Press Release

Large Bionocular Telescope brings the Universe into Sharper Focus

March 15th, 2012 7:00 AM PST


Image 1: A look at the HR8799 planetary system from two different infrared wavelengths; on the left is the system seen in the H band (1.65 microns) and on the right is the system in a narrow band centered on 3.3 microns which is sensitive to absorption by methane. All four planets are visible. This is the first time the innermost planet, HR8799e, has been imaged at either wavelength.

Image 2: A view of four young stars in the Orion Trapezium cluster 1,350 light-years away, as seen through the LBT’s Adaptive Optics (AO). This is the best image ever taken of these stars, which are all tightly located within 1 arcsecond of each other. By comparing this 2.16 micron infrared image to past images of this group over the last 15 years, astronomers can now see the motion of each star with respect to the others. The movements show that the mini-cluster of young stars were born together, but will likely fall apart as the stars age and interact with each other.

Image 3: The HD 15115 debris disk is displayed at two different infrared wavelengths. On the left is the debris disk in the Ks color band (2.16 microns), with an asymmetrical disk similar to previous observations, while on the right is an L’ band (3.8 microns) view of the symmetrical disk of large dust grains first detected by LBT. In both versions, the white dot marks the location of the star. The central region of each image has been masked out in post-processing.