2.07.2019 / 12.00 MESZ
On Tuesday, 2 July 2019, a total solar eclipse passes over ESO’s La Silla Observatory in Chile. Total solar eclipses are rare phenomena — one occurs on average at any specific location every 360 years (more information about the phenomenon on the page The Eclipse). Moreover, La Silla Observatory celebrates this year its 50th anniversary, since the official inauguration on 25 March 1969 (more info).
To celebrate this, ESO organizes a public event, opening its door to thousand visitors, among them, students and elderlies of the Region of Coquimbo, as well as invited students from all the country regions, authorities, ESO staff members and general public. Few selected scientific teams will perform observations. National and international media will be on site to cover the event.
Please note that we are fully booked for this event. However, if you wish to witness the total solar eclipse of 2 July, you can find more information in Other Activities in Chile.
In addition to the public event at La Silla, we will provide a live webcast of the eclipse, should weather conditions be favourable and Internet broadband performs as expected. The webcast will be available in HD on ESO’s websiteand on ESO’s Youtube Channel. For more information, please check the following announcement.
If you are a confirmed visitor for the Total Solar Eclipse Event at ESO’s La Silla Observatory, you are kindly invited to check the latest update of the Information for Visitors section.
We invited your regularly check the General program of activities.
Find out more
La Silla is the first observing site of the European Southern Observatory (ESO) and celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2019. At its inauguration, La Silla became the largest astronomical observatory of its time, leading Europe to the frontline of astronomical research. Since then, La Silla has led to an enormous number of scientific discoveries, including several science “firsts” (see Science Top-10). With over 300 refereed publications attributable to observations from the observatory per year, La Silla remains one of the most scientifically productive observatories in the world.
Here you can learn more about La Silla observatory
This video describes what happens during a solar eclipse, and what a viewer could expect to experience at ESO La Silla Observatory in Chile. A Spanish version of this video is available here.
ESO Eclipse Activities
The general schedule of the day is as follows:
|08:00||Doors open at La Silla Observatory Main Camp (Camp Pelicano).|
|08:00 – 15:30||Shuttles from the Gate to the Event area.|
|08:30 – 16:00||Activities proposed to the public
Tour of the ESO 3.6-metre telescope (08:30 – 15:30)
Tour of the NTT telescope (08:30 – 14:30)
Activities at the Visitor Center (08:30 – 12:45):
Music band (14:35 – 15:25)
(see details below at Outreach activities)
|15:23||Partial eclipse begins.|
|16:39||Start of totality.|
|16:41||End of totality.|
|17:00 – 22:00||Activities proposed to the public
Solar observation (17:00 – 18:00)
Activities at the Visitor Center (17:00 – 22:00):
|18:00 – 22:00||Shuttles from the Event area to the Gate.|
The viewing locations
The following viewing areas are foreseen:
- Public viewing area for ticket-holders, specially invited pupils and elderly (marked Mirador, yellow)
- Special guests invited by the ESO Director General and Representative, Media, Outreach/Science projects (marked VIP, blue)
You will have the possibility to enjoy different kind of outreach activities before the Total Solar Eclipse.
Please note that a booking system is not feasible due to the unpredictability of the arrival time of the public. All activities will work on a first come for served basis, so please consider waiting time.
Tour of La Silla telescopes
Tour of the NTT telescope
15-minute tour (English or Spanish), max 15 people. Start of the tour at the entrance of the NTT telescope.
8:30 to 14:15 (last tour starts at 14:00) - Check here for the detailed program of tours.
Tour of the 3.6-m telescope
Total 35-minute activity, considering 20-min tour and 15-min round trip to the 3.6-m telescope platform (English or Spanish), max 25 people. Pick-up at the Hop-on Hop-off location.
8:40 to 15:35 (last pick-up 15:00) - Check here for the detailed program of tours.
Activities at the Visitor Center
30-minutes talk will be offered to the public. Check here for the detailed program of talks.
Max capacity of the room: 80 people
Video projecting astronomical images with a special soundtrack using ALMA Sounds
20-minute session (English or Spanish), max. 20 people.
8:50 to 12:50 (last session starts at 12:30) / 17:00 to 21:20 (last session stars at 21:00)
Paintings illustrating topics related to light
20-minute session (English – Spanish), max 20 people.
9:00 to 12:40 (last session starts at 12:20) / 17:10 to 21:30 (last session stars at 21:10)
Historical museum of instrumentation
Exhibition about the history of astronomical detectors, including La Silla instrumentation pieces
Free access (max. capacity 15 people). Exhibition in English and Spanish
8:30 to 12:45 / 17:00 to 22:00
General exhibition about ESO and an exhibition of 70’s - 80’s La Silla historical pieces
8:30 to 10:00 / 17:00 to 22:00
Free access (access restricted during talks). Exhibition in English and Spanish
Observation of the Sun with a solar telescope and diffraction glasses.
8:30 to 14:15 / 15:15 to 16:15 / 17:00 to 18:00
Free access. Spanish-speaking and English-speaking monitors.
Music band “Steve Rothery & friends”
From 14:35 to 15:25, the general public will also enjoy the “Steve Rothery & friends” music band. They will perform hit of Marillion.
On the occasion of the eclipse, we are organising the second #MeetESO tweet-up. Nine lucky social media enthusiasts have been selected to witness the La Silla total solar eclipse, #LaSillaTSE, , and visit all of ESO’s sites in Chile — a treat not many people get to experience!
Join us for the adventure, experience the total eclipse and discover the ESO sites through their eyes by following ESO, the hashtags: #meetESO #LaSillaTSE and the accounts of each participant (see below).
Who are the #Lucky9?
- Eric Benedetti, United States of America. Eric can be found on Instagram and Facebook .
- Paul Davies, United Kingdom. Paul can be found onTwitter,Facebook and Instagram.
- Guillaume Doyen, France. Guillaume can be found onYouTube,Twitter,Facebook, Instagram and on his blog.
- Tara Foster, Ireland/Australia. Tara can be found onTwitter,Facebook, Instagram and on her blog.
- Olivia Haider, Austria. Olivia can be found onTwitter,Facebook and Instagram.
- Felipe Hime Miranda, Brazil. Felipe can be found onYouTube,Instagram and Twitter.
- Ariel Waldman, United States of America. Ariel can be found onYouTube,Twitter,Facebook and Instagram.
- Carol Wright, United Kingdom. Carol can be found onTwitter,Facebook and Instagram.
- Norédine Benazdia, France. Norédine can be found on YouTube and Twitter.