Heavy Lifting at Vera C. Rubin Observatory

On 2 March 2021 at Vera C. Rubin Observatory in Chile, the top-end assembly for the telescope was lowered through the observatory enclosure by a giant, 500-ton capacity crane. The top-end assembly holds the 3.5-meter convex secondary mirror and the giant 3-ton LSST Camera. The camera optics consist of three large fused-silica lenses and a set of astronomical filters.  

The installation of the top-end is an important step in the completion of the Telescope Mount Assembly, which will hold and precisely position the 8.4-meter diameter main mirror called M1M3 (which doubles as both primary and tertiary mirror) and the top end assembly. Rubin’s innovative optical design is needed to deliver a whopping 3.5-degree field of view on the sky which illuminates the huge 60-centimeter (2 feet)-diameter flat focal plane filled with sensors totaling 3200 megapixels. Rubin Observatory and its 10-year survey of the sky will shed light on some of the biggest mysteries of the Universe, including dark matter and dark energy.


Rubin Observatory/NSF/AURA

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Release date:March 10, 2021, 12:45 a.m.
Duration:02 m 00 s
Frame rate:29.97

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