Photography : Astronomy : Down the Barrel
Research telescopes are an impressive sight! This is the main mirror of the ARC 3.5m telescope at Apache Point Observatory. Below is a panorama of the inside of the telescope dome. The mirror is 11.5 feet (3.5 m) across but is considered a "small" telescope by researchers. This might not make sense until you compare it to the 33 foot wide (8 m) Keck telescope in Hawaii. NMSU helps maintain Apache Point Observatory, so we have access to time on this telescope. After being trained, observers can choose between visiting Apache Point to observe, or controlling the telescope remotely over the internet. How cool is that?!