The facilities of Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory (CTIO), part of the U.S. National Optical Astronomy Observatory, continue to be the nucleus of U.S. astronomy in the Southern hemisphere. From the first observations in 1965, Cerro Tololo has served as the principle platform for U.S. astronomical investigation of the southern skies. Cerro Tololo is located about 500km north of Santiago, Chile, about 70km east of La Serena, at an altitude of 2200 meters. CTIO operates the 4.0-m Blanco telescope on Cerro Tololo and the new 4.1-m SOAR Telescope, on the adjacent Cerro Pachón, next to the 8.0-meter Gemini-South telescope. The CTIO 1.5-m, 1.3-m, and 0.9-m telescopes, and the Yale 1.0-m telescope are being operated by the SMARTS Consortium with support from CTIO. CTIO also host many tenant observatories and research projects, such as PROMPT, ALO, WHAM, and soon LCOGTN, providing a platform for access to the southern hemisphere for U.S. and world-wide scientific research.
Last updated or reviewed February 10, 2011.