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ESO Signs Ten-Year Agreement with Australia

Photonics.com
Jul 2017
CANBERRA, Australia, July 26, 2017 — The European Southern Observatory (ESO) has signed a 10-year strategic alliance with the Australian government to give Australian astronomers and industry access to the La Silla Paranal Observatory in Chile.

At a ceremony in Canberra, Australia, on July 11 2017, an arrangement was signed to begin a 10-year strategic partnership between ESO and Australia. The partnership will further strengthen ESO's program, both scientifically and technically, and will give Australian astronomers and industry access to the La Silla Paranal Observatory. It may also be the first step towards Australia becoming an ESO Member State.
At a ceremony in Canberra, Australia, an arrangement was signed to begin a 10-year strategic partnership between ESO and Australia. The partnership will further strengthen ESO's program, both scientifically and technically, and will give Australian astronomers and industry access to the La Silla Paranal Observatory. It may also be the first step towards Australia becoming an ESO Member State. Courtesy of the Australian government.

As part of the agreement, Australia will contribute financially to ESO for 10 years, with the potential to then obtain full membership. The signature ceremony was held at the Australian National University in Canberra during the annual meeting of the Astronomical Society of Australia.

"Today we sign a strategic arrangement that will give Australian astronomers, as well as technical institutes and industries, access to the La Silla Paranal Observatory," said Tim de Zeeuw, director general of the ESO. "An association between Australia and ESO has been a goal for me for more than 20 years, and I am very pleased that it is now becoming a reality."

The partnership will allow Australian astronomers to participate in the Very Large Telescope, the Very Large Telescope Interferometer, VISTA, VST, the ESO 3.6-m telescope and the New Technology Telescope. The partnership will also open up opportunities for Australian scientists and industry to collaborate with ESO member state institutions on upcoming instruments at these observatories.

ESO is an intergovernmental astronomy organization and ground-based astronomical observatory in Europe supported by the 16 countries of Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Chile, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Finland, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

GLOSSARY
astronomy
The scientific observation of celestial radiation that has reached the vicinity of Earth, and the interpretation of these observations to determine the characteristics of the extraterrestrial bodies and phenomena that have emitted the radiation.
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