News and Updates

Spectra from the XSHOOTER GRB afterglow legacy sample (XS-GRB) released

Published: 10 Oct 2018

This data release provides 1D spectra of 103 individual afterglows that were observed with the XSHOOTER spectrograph within 48 hours of the GRB trigger. The data release includes a few late-time host observations also for completeness. The total collection of spectra represents all GRB afterglows that have been followed up with XSHOOTER before March 31st, 2017. This date marks the end of the XS-GRB legacy follow-up program. Redshifts have been measured for 97% of these sources, covering a redshift range from 0.059 to 7.84, hence this dataset provides a unique resource to study the ISM across cosmic time.

New Features for the ESO Archive Science Portal

Published: 02 Oct 2018

ESO’s Archive Science Portal provides an intuitive yet very powerful way of browsing, searching and downloading reduced science-ready data. Since the initial rollout three months ago, it has already been visited by more than approximately 1700 users (as inferred from the count of distinct IP addresses). Based on user feedback a new view mode has been implemented as a central new feature in addition to the already existing sky view. It allows users to inspect, at a glance, the multi-dimensional query space in up to seventeen 1D distributions. They include physical parameters like sensitivity and signal-to-noise ratio, alongside more traditional ones such as Programme ID or instrumental setup. Users can easily interact with any list or histogram to add or remove search constraints and to build up rather complex queries in a progressive fashion.

New data release of spectra and catalogue from the VANDELS ESO Public Spectroscopic Survey

Published: 24 Sep 2018

VANDELS  is a deep Public Spectroscopic Survey of high-redshift galaxies with the VIMOS spectrograph. It is designed to exploit the multi-wavelength imaging and near-IR grism spectroscopy available in the CANDELS UDS and CDFS fields. The goal is to obtain spectra with sufficient signal-to-noise ratio to derive metallicities and velocity offsets for absorption and emission lines independently, allowing a detailed investigation of the physics of galaxies in the early Universe. Within an area of 0.2 deg2,  the survey aims at delivering more than 2500 high signal-to-noise (=15-20) spectra of star forming galaxies in the redshift range 2.5 < z< 5.5 and passive galaxies in the redshift range  1.5 < z < 2.5.

Enhanced Data Discovery Services for the ESO Science Archive

Published: 29 Jun 2018

We are delighted to announce new capabilities and user services to enhance data discovery and usage in the face of the increasing volume and complexity of the archive holdings:

Second data release of the Large Early Galaxy Census (LEGA-C) Public Spectroscopic Survey now available via the ESO Science Archive

Published: 22 Jun 2018

The LEGA-C ESO Public Spectroscopic Survey conducted at the VLT with the VIMOS multi-object spectrograph selects its target galaxies from the UltraVISTA catalogue in the 1.6 deg2 area of the COSMOS field and obtains deep, high resolution spectra from which the kinematics and stellar population parameters of the galaxies are extracted.

APICAM all-sky images from Paranal available in the Archive

Published: 04 Apr 2018

Since March 2018, ApiCam-3 acquires all-sky images from Paranal. They are now available in the Science Archive.

ApiCam-3 has a science-grade 4k x 4k KAF-16803 CCD mounted behind a Canon 12 -mm focal length fish-eye lens providing a 180deg diameter field-of-view, resulting in a 160 arcsec pixel. The instrument is equipped with a filter wheel (although currently the observation sequence uses only a clear "luminance" filter), and is mounted on a tracking station ensuring that the stars are not trailed. The filter sequence and exposure time sequences are likely to evolve over time. Apicam-3 is installed on the roof of the VLTI building on the Paranal platform; it is part of the outreach instrument which also provides deep colour JPG images, to be used in the ESO Supernova and other planetariums, and are available on the ESO webcam page. ApiCam-3 was built by Apical Technologies.

ApiCam-3 is not meant as a replacement of the existing MASCOT all-sky camera (which is scheduled for an upgrade), and is not "operation-critical", meaning its availability is not guaranteed. Nevertheless, we are planning to use its data to test and develop various sky characterization tools. These data could also be useful to spot bright transients.

The data can be retrieved from the usual interface, selecting APICAM as the instrument in the "Other" category.


Release of pipeline-processed VIMOS images as part of the UK in-kind reprocessing project

Published: 27 Mar 2018

This data release contains the science data products from all science observations done using the VIMOS instrument in imaging mode, from the beginning of regular operations (April 2003) until August 2015. The remaining data will be added in the next future.

First data release from the spectroscopic study of low mass binaries carried out by the Eclipsing Reflection Effect Binaries from the OGLE Survey (EREBOS) project with FORS2

Published: 20 Mar 2018

The EREBOS project is carried out under the ESO LP 196.D-0214, PI Veronika Schaffenroth, and studies the interaction of low-mass stellar and sub-stellar companions with low-mass stars. Several post-common envelope eclipsing binaries, with a hot sub-dwarf primary and a cool low mass companion, were selected using the photometric results of the Optical Gravitational Lensing Experiment (OGLE) and observed with FORS2 in long-slit mode.

ESO Follow-up Observations of LIGO-VIRGO Gravitational Wave Source GW 170817: reduced VLT/NACO L’ band imaging data released

Published: 18 Dec 2017

The detection of the gravitational wave source GW 170817 by the LIGO-VIRGO observatory network, as well as the gamma-ray burst GRB 170817A, on 17 August 2017 has resulted in one of the largest Target of Opportunity campaigns at ESO (

New version of the band merged catalogue from the VPHAS+ Public Survey

Published: 09 Nov 2017

With this additional catalogue release (DR3.2) from the ESO/VST Photometric H-alpha Survey of the Southern Galactic Plane and Bulge (VPHAS+), data from six more months of observations are added to the previously released catalogue. Aperture marched band measurements are derived from all the calibrated images of sufficient quality that have been acquired till 30 September 2015 under ESO Programme 177.D-3023(B,C,D,E, F, G, H). The current catalogue release covers about 1200 square degrees that correspond to over half of the VPHAS+ footprint targeting the Southern Galactic Plane.

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