You are here
SPHERE, a New Eye on Distant Worlds
In operation since June 2014, the Spectro-Polarimetric High-contrast Exoplanet REsearch instrument (SPHERE), attached to one of the four mirrors of the Very Large Telescope (VLT) in Chile, was designed for the direct observation of extrasolar planets. Light reflected by exoplanets is much fainter than that of their neighboring stars, making direct detection very difficult. SPHERE combines a number of technologies to obtain extremely high-contrast images in the area around the star to identify these weak glows.
Thierry Fusco, Onera, centre français de la recherche aéronautique, spatiale et de défense