A time lapse video created by the Paranal Observatory of the skies over the Atacama desert, Chile, are simply amazing. All of the videos were taken on location by Stéphane Guisard and José Francisco Salgado.
According to the Youtube video about section, the laser you see in the video is used as a calibration device to allow for curvature of the Earth’s atmosphere and produce higher resolution images. It is noted that a combination of huge telescopes were used to create this amazing piece of time lapse art.
The video truly makes you feel as though you are getting a glimpse of the soul of the universe. With shifting stars and bright colors, the cosmos come to life before your eyes. A view of a sky with high-powered telescopes that is untainted by man-made light allows you to see deeper into the universe than with your bare eyes.
Though the view is spectacular, some commenters note that we could see the universe in all its glory nightly if we didn’t live in a world filled with electric light. Imagine the view that our ancestors would have seen sitting under the stars without an artificial light to interfere with the sight? This video provides the ability to see the beauty of the night in its entirety.
With the creation of higher-powered telescopes and satellites, we are getting glimpses deeper and deeper into our universe. However, it isn’t just telescopes that are painting a picture of our universe. NASA’s Interstellar Boundary Explorer, IBEX, is a probe that has helped scientists map out a full picture of our galaxy, which according to IBEX data, includes a tail. While telescopes have been able to spot tails around other stars, it has been almost impossible to tell whether or not our star has one. That is, until IBEX was able to map out the tail by measuring neutral particles that are created by collisions that happen at the heliosphere’s boundaries. The tail previously couldn’t be seen with a regular telescope because the particles in the tail don’t shine.
It is ironic to think that advancements in technology have given us new views of our universe while, at the same time, stripped away our ability to see some of the most basic images with our bare eyes. Would you spend more time outside at night if you had the view from the Paranal Observatory time lapse video nightly?