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William Herschel Telescope

GLAS: Ground-layer Laser Adaptive optics System

— Laser guiding star system for use with NAOMI —

First light (at ING): 27 May 2007.

De-commissioned: July 2009,

Designed and built by: NWO, ING, University of Durham, ASTRON, University of Leiden, and the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias.

Description: In January 2004 the Nederlandse Organisatie voor Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek (NWO) announced its full support for the proposed development of a laser beacon for the NAOMI Adaptive Optics system on the 4.2-m William Herschel Telescope. Such a laser guide star system will amplify the fraction of sky available to adaptive optics observations at visible and infrared wavelengths from a few percent to nearly 100%. In terms of astronomical research, this translates into radical progress as it opens up high spatial resolution observations from the ground to nearly all types of science targets. In combination with the existing and planned instrumentation, the WHT will offer a highly competitive facility to the astronomical community, exploiting a window of opportunity before similar capability will exist on 8-m class telescopes.


Time allocations:
Nights scheduled since semester 2007B

Instrument information:


Research impact:

Scientific highlights (1)

Public outreach:

Media releases (1)


Photo archive (8)

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Contact:  (Public Relations Officer)
Last modified: 08 November 2023