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What is Rubin Observatory?

Vera C. Rubin Observatory is a brand new astronomical facility on top of Cerro Pachón, a mountain in Northern Chile. Rubin Observatory will conduct a 10-year survey of the Southern Hemisphere sky (referred to as the Legacy Survey of Space and Time, or LSST) with the goal of answering some of astronomers' biggest questions about the Universe.

Every night for a decade, Rubin Observatory will take images of the sky using a 3200 megapixel camera and six different optical filters. Each image covers an area as big as 40 full moons, and the giant 8.4-meter telescope can move between different positions in less than five seconds. In this way, the telescope will image the entire visible sky every 3-4 nights. This makes Rubin Observatory particularly good at detecting objects that have changed in brightness, like supernovae, or in position, like asteroids. Additionally, Rubin Observatory’s light-collecting power and sensitive camera will help us discover ~17 billion stars and ~20 billion galaxies we’ve never seen before.

Construction Schedule

Rubin Observatory is under construction, with an expected start of science operations in 2025.

See our construction schedule

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Rubin Observatory is a feat of engineering, from its one-of-a-kind combined primary/tertiary mirror to the car-sized LSST Camera. Explore the technological innovations making Rubin science possible.

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Science goals

Discover the key science areas where Rubin Observatory will advance astronomy and astrophysics.

Learn more about Rubin's science goals

Explore our videos about Rubin and its science

Want to learn about Rubin, but prefer watching videos to reading? We've got you! Check out our animated video series, freely available for anyone to watch on Youtube.

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