— A visit to Davis Mountains State Park and surrounding areas will inevitably raise travelers’ curiosity, especially if you spot the view in the photo. That is one of the ten antenna doing radio astronomy research. In the scientific world, they are referred to as VLBA (Very Long Baseline Array) antenna. Each antenna is 260 tons, 25 meters (82 feet) in diameter and controlled centrally in Socorro, New Mexico. The data they gather allow astronomers to do detailed studies of celestial objects. If you are sci-fi movie fan, you might recall seeing them in the 1997 movie Contact (with Jodie Foster & Matthew McConoughey). Their precision is such that a person can be in Los Angeles and read a newspaper in New York using these telescopes. The day I made this photo, we were lucky enough to get right at the antenna base and talk with one of the technicians on site.
Taken: 14 March, 2013
Focal length: 55.8mm
Location: 30° 38.0833′ 0″ N 103° 56.7833′ 0″ W
Shutter speed: 1/125s