S.P.H.E.R.E Device or – Spectro Polarimetric High-contrast Exoplanet REsearch was installed on the telescope VLT Observatory Paranal Observatory in Chile. This powerful device for the study of extrasolar planets using a combination of various advanced technologies. Its capabilities – much higher than the older generations of devices , and in the early days of his work was able to get great shots of dusty disks around nearby stars , as well as other facilities.
It is expected that using it will have revolutionized the study of extrasolar planets and circumstellar disks. Basic tests S.P.H.E.R.E were held in Europe in December 2013 , after which the device has been transported to Paranal. In May 2014 it was installed on the telescope VLT Unit Telescope 3. S.P.H.E.R.E – a representative of the latest generation of devices for the VLT ( the first three instruments – X-shooter, KMOS and MUSE).
In order to achieve such impressive results , S.P.H.E.R.E creators took advantage of the latest technological developments , in particular in the field of adaptive optics , special sensors and chronographicis components.
Extreme Adaptive Optics S.P.H.E.R.E helps to correct the effects of the influence of the Earth’s atmosphere, and the pictures are clearer and increases the contrast of the image exoplanets. Chronagraph used to block starlight and further increase the contrast. Finally, a technique called differential image, uses the difference between the planetary and stellar light (its color and polarization), – and this barely noticeable difference can also help in the detection of the moment invisible exoplanets.
For a very short period of operation of the device is already conducted observations of various objects in different modes S.P.H.E.R.E. Here is one of the best at the moment shots ring of dust around the star HR 4796A. It not only demonstrates with exceptional clarity dusty ring, but also a confirmation of how well S.P.H.E.R.E can suppress the glow of a bright star in the center of the image. This device will be need for key in the future to “see another eyes who always see us“.