One of the first images from the new VIMOS facility, obtained right after the moment of “first light” on February 26, 2002. It shows the famous “Antennae Galaxies” (NGC 4038/9), the result of a recent collision between two galaxies.
Antennae Galaxies NGC 4038/NGC 4039
Release date: 13 March 2002
Optical B Very Large Telescope VIMOS
Optical V Very Large Telescope VIMOS
Infrared I Very Large Telescope VIMOS
VIMOS is a visible (360 to 1000 nm) wide field imager and multi- object spectrograph mounted on the Nasmyth focus B of UT3 Melipal. The instrument is made of four identical arms with each a field of view of 7′ x 8′ with a 0.205″ pixel size and a gap between each quadrant of ~2′. Each arm is equipped with 6 grisms providing a spectral resolution range from ~200-2500 and with one EEV CCD 4k x 2k.
VIMOS operates in three different modes: Imaging (IMG), Multi-Object Spectroscopy (MOS), and with Integral Field Unit (IFU).
As an immediate outcome of this dramatic event, stars are born within massive complexes that appear blue in this composite photo, based on exposures through green, orange and red optical filters.
Individual exposures of 60 seconds each; image quality 0.6 arcsec FWHM; the field measures 3.5 x 3.5 arcmin2. North is up and East is left.
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