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The VLTI New Instrument Transnational Access Support aims to provide improved user services and user access (both virtual and direct) for the new Very Large Telescope Interferometer (VLTI) capabilities developed and commissioned under the OPTICON-RadioNET Pilot’s Joint Activity 3.2. Specifically, the goals are:

  • Provide enhanced data access for the new GRAVITY off-axis mode via supporting calibration recipes, user software, and/or documentation;
  • Support access and observations with the new Hi-5/VIKING instrument.

These objectives will be reached by two tasks designed with the goal to make the new VLTI capabilities as accessible as possible to non-experts.

Expected impact

The telescope/virtual access (TA/VA) programme for VLTI has been designed to enable user access beyond the instrument teams to the new capabilities that are opened in the VLTI JA programme. This will support the goal of expanding the user base of the VLTI, in line with the call’s expected impact. The individual projects have been selected from an open call to the optical/infrared (OIR) interferometry community via independent peer review by a panel of international experts.

Infrastructure Description

  • Name: ESO VLTI
  • Location: Paranal Observatory, Chile
  • Website: 
  • Description: The VLTI consists of four 8m and four 1.8m telescopes that are operated by ESO. It is the foremost OIR interferometric facility in the world with open calls for observing proposals every 6 months.
  • Services currently offered: The VLTI currently operates 3 instruments: (1) GRAVITY, a K-band low-to mid-spectral resolution beam combiner, (2) PIONIER for H-band low spectral resolution interferometry, and (3) MATISSE a low- to high-spectral resolution beam combiner for the L, M, and N-bands.