Meet the telescope behind the Pac-Man photos

According to the memes circling around this weekend, Mecha Pac-Man has a fondness for lunar cheese and starlight, gaping wide to gobble them both. In reality, the telescope behind the Pac-Man photograph is Auxiliary Telescope 2, an essential component of the most productive ground-based telescope on the planet. » 3/11/14 6:08pm 3/11/14 6:08pm

The birth and death of stars in one spectacular photo

Our nearest galactic neighbor is the Large Magellanic Cloud. But despite its close proximity — about 160,000 light-years — astronomers are still finding new features to explore, including this stunning supernova remnant that appears to be sitting right beside a stellar nursery. » 11/27/13 6:20am 11/27/13 6:20am

This could be the lightest alien planet ever captured on camera

We’ve found hundreds of planets outside the solar system, but taking a picture of one is still something quite special. » 6/03/13 7:20am 6/03/13 7:20am

The Earth revolves around the night sky in reversed time-lapse video

How we see the universe is defined by where we're standing, and that can create some fundamental misconceptions about the cosmos. Case in point: this time-lapse video that reminds us it isn't the stars that are moving...it's the Earth itself. » 6/05/11 12:10pm 6/05/11 12:10pm

An awe-inspiring look at the Very Large Telescope in the Chilean desert

We've seen some breathtaking photography and footage of the night sky from Chile's Atacama Desert, but this eight-minute time-lapse sequence of the European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope takes the cake. See the Earth rotate around the endless sky. » 5/30/11 12:15pm 5/30/11 12:15pm

The constellations come out to play above the Very Large Telescope

These buildings are three of the structures that make up the European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope, located in Chile's Atacama Desert. In the skies above them are the constellations Orion, Canis Major, and the Southern Cross, among many others. » 5/15/11 3:00pm 5/15/11 3:00pm

The naked beauty of 6 spiral galaxies

Here are six of the most beautiful galaxies, "stripped bare" by a new camera. The European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope, paired with the HAWK-l infrared camera, saw past the interstellar dust to show us just the galaxies themselves. » 10/28/10 11:30am 10/28/10 11:30am

A Chilean telescope fires a laser into space to create a virtual star…

The European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope is shooting a freakin big laser into space, to create a virtual star to compensate for the Earth's atmospheric interference. » 9/17/10 7:30am 9/17/10 7:30am

First 3-D view of a supernova in progress

Check out this artist's impression of an super-violent supernova. The Very Large Telescope managed to obtain the first 3-D view of material after a star's explosion, traveling 100 million kilometers per hour. And check out a video below. » 8/06/10 7:30am 8/06/10 7:30am

27 Million Pixels of Space Porny Joy

Click to view » 11/09/08 9:00am 11/09/08 9:00am This gorgeous image — which you can bet is beastly in size at full resolution — features the endless parade of faraway stars that occupy our universe. It's the deepest photograph of its kind ever taken from a ground-based telescope, enabling us to see constellations from Earth that are a billion times…