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Laying of the First Stone for the Tokyo Atacama Observatory 6.5m Telescope

The Tokyo Atacama Observatory (TAO) Project celebrated the laying of the first stone (a Chilean tradition similar to a ground breaking ceremony) on November 22. The TAO project is building an infrared-optimized telescope with a 6.5m diameter aperture on the summit of Cerro Chajnantor, near the town of San Pedro de Atacama (and near ALMA) in northern Chile. Steward Observatory is making the primary, secondary, and tertiary elements for this telescope. Steward Director Dr. Buell Jannuzi was in Chile, gave remarks, and read remarks by Steward Emeritus Director Dr. Peter Strittmatter. We have three photos of the event in Santiago: FIRST, a photo of TAO Project Director Yuzuru Yoshii, University of Tokyo and University of Arizona, and Professor Mario Hamuy of the University of Chile. Mario is a UA Alum (PhD 2001) and currently the President of CONICYT, the Chilean government’s scientific research agency. SECOND, the speakers and some of the participants in the “Laying of the First Stone” Ceremony for the Tokyo Atacama Observatory, November 22, 2017, in Santiago, Chile. THIRD, the TAO flag with signatures and good wishes from the assembled celebrants. (all photos courtesy TAO).