VERITAS Telescope 1 near the administrative complex of FLWO.
VERITAS (Very Energetic Radiation Imaging Telescope Array System) is a new major ground-based gamma-ray observatory with an array of four 12m optical reflectors for gamma-ray astronomy in the GeV - TeV energy range . The new telescope design will be based on the design of the existing 10m gamma-ray telescope of the Whipple Observatory. It will consist of an array of imaging telescopes which will be deployed such that they will permit the maximum versatility and will give the highest sensitivity in the 50 GeV - 50 TeV band (with maximum sensitivity from 100 GeV to 10 TeV). In this band critical measurements of SNRs and AGNs will be made. This VHE observatory will effectively complement GLAST well into the next millennium.
1 February 2005: First Light on VERITAS Telescope
The recently completed VERITAS Telescope-1 saw first light on February 1, 2005 with the detection of a signal from the Crab Nebula. The telescope, with its full complement of 350 mirror facets and a 499 pixel camera, has met all technical specifications. A two-dimensional image of the Crab is shown below along with some typical images and animations of gamma-ray and cosmic-ray air showers; the time slices are 2 ns apart. Telescope-1 will be operated at its temporary site at the Whipple Observatory Basecamp until February, 2006 when it will be moved to Horseshoe Canyon on Kitt Peak to join the other three VERITAS telescopes.
Click on the image below to see a larger version.