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AMBER in New Scientist
Monday 5 December 2005

The new AMBER results have been quoted as a top story by the New Scientist magazine of 3 Dec 2005.

"Giant eye ready to spot planet birth" by Hazel Muir
New Scientist 2528, 12 (3 December 2005)

THE clearest views so far of dusty discs surrounding both newborn and ageing stars have been captured by an observatory in Chile. The striking results raise hopes that the same instrument might soon catch our first glimpse of giant planets orbiting close to sun-like stars.

The observations were made using the Very Large Telescope Interferometer (VLTI), a telescope array run by the European Southern Observatory atop the 2635-metre mountain Paranal in Chile’s Atacama desert. A new instrument called AMBER combines infrared light from either two or three 8.2-metre telescopes, making an instrument that effectively has the resolution of a telescope up to 90 metres in diameter (see Diagram). By analysing the interference fringes created by combining the light, astronomers can study details that occupy just 0.5 millionths of a degree in the night sky...

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