Jan 1

Sunset over Kitt Peak National Observatory — IOTW2001

Credit: NSF’s National Optical-Infrared Astronomy Research Laboratory/KPNO/AURA/R.T. Sparks

Release Image

Thumbnail for A release image

The still image depicts the silhouettes of the telescopes with a green flash above the Sun and was taken on December 17, 2016.

Credit: NSF’s National Optical-Infrared Astronomy Research Laboratory/KPNO/AURA/R.T. Sparks

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Release Video

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This video shows the entire 3-minute event.

Credit: NSF’s National Optical-Infrared Astronomy Research Laboratory/KPNO/AURA/R.T. Sparks

Credit: NSF’s National Optical-Infrared Astronomy Research Laboratory/KPNO/AURA/R.T. Sparks

Every year around the winter solstice, the Sun appears to set behind Kitt Peak National Observatory as seen from Mount Lemmon almost 100 km (60 miles) away. Local photographers meet every year around the holidays to capture photos and videos of this interesting alignment. For a brief time, you can see many of the Kitt Peak telescopes, from the distinctive McMath-Pierce Solar telescope (left) to the large dome of the Mayall 4-meter telescope (right). The still image depicts the silhouettes of the telescopes with a green segment above the Sun and was taken on 17 December 2016. The video was captured on 20 December 2019. The image and video are available by following the links to the right.

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