Subaru Telescope 10th Anniversary

January 22, 2009

Masahiko Hayashi
Director of Subaru Telescope

This month, Subaru Telescope is celebrating the 10th anniversary since its first light in January 1999. Before Subaru was built, there was only a small 74" (1.9m) optical-infrared telescope available for Japan's astronomy community and we all used to wonder if we could jump start frontier astronomy with our own 27 ft. (8.2m) telescope placed outside of Japan with the experience at that time.  However, the images we obtained with Subaru at the first light dispelled our apprehension, unveiling numerous faint stars with unprecedented sharpness.

Ten years have past since then, and we are pleased that Subaru Telescope has been producing world frontier results in a wide range of astronomy from the solar system science to the farthest reaches of the universe.  I am deeply moved by such achievements and am grateful to the many people who have provided every effort to the realization of this telescope.  Above all, we would like to express our gratitude to the people who enjoy the news and images we release and encourage us continuously.

It was just about 10 years ago when astronomers found that the expansion of the universe was accelerating (dark energy), opposite to the expectation of many.  A little earlier than that, astronomers discovered planets orbiting around a star other than the sun. They will surely find earth-like planets in the near future.

Subaru Telescope would also like to challenge these frontiers of astronomy for the coming years and to share the excitement of discovery with people around the world.

Masahiko Hayashi
Director of Subaru Telescope
National Astronomical Observatory of Japan


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