Incredible View of Image of Neptune That Was Taken From Earth

Incredible View of Image of Neptune That Was Taken From Earth

It’s hard to believe that this image of Neptune was taken by a telescope right here on Earth.

The incredible image of Neptune was snapped with the MUSE (Multi Unit Spectroscopic Explorer) instrument on the Very Large Telescope (VLT) in Chile. The instrument was recently upgraded with a new way to see space called laser tomography, and it’s already showing its impressive capabilities.

As you know Neptune is an average distance of 4.5 billion kilometers (2.8 billion miles) from Earth.

The clearest views come from the Voyager 2 spacecraft, which flew past in 1989, followed by the Hubble Space Telescope, which can get decent images from Earth orbit.

“But according to the European Southern Observatory (ESO), which runs the VLT, these new images from MUSE surpass that of Hubble. And they say the technique they’ve used here could be used for a whole lot of other things apart from imaging the most distant planet in our Solar System”, mentions IFLScience.

Here see the images; Hubble Space Telescope compared to VLT Adaptive Optics!

Hubble Space Telescope compared to VLT Adaptive Optics
Hubble Space Telescope compared to VLT Adaptive Optics

“It will enable astronomers to study in unprecedented detail fascinating objects such as supermassive black holes at the centres of distant galaxies, jets from young stars, globular clusters, supernovae, planets and their satellites in the Solar System and much more,” they said.

“The image has been made possible using adaptive optics. As light comes through our atmosphere it gets scattered, which is why stars twinkle when you look at them. To overcome this, the VLT, which consists of four telescopes high in the Atacama Desert, fires four lasers into the sky. It then looks at how blurry these lasers are to work out the “blurriness level” (yes I just coined that) at various altitudes”, indicates IFLScience.

Source: IFLScience.com