VLA at Sunset – Socorro, New Mexico

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The Very Large Array, or VLA, shown here at sunset, is a large radio-wave telescope outside of Socorro, New Mexico.

The Very Large Array (VLA) is located pretty much in the middle of nowhere. The nearest town is Socorro, New Mexico, but it is tiny, and fifty miles away. But the remote desert is the perfect place for radio telescopes such as this. The dry atmosphere leads to stronger extraterrestrial signals due reduced water vapor interference. It also makes the nights eerily lonely, a feeling only amplified by these giant instruments probing the depths of space. The VLA at sunset, and the surrounding landscape in general, comes to stunning life… but minutes from now a piercing darkness will take over, as if to encourage contemplation of the beyond.

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