Update May 2016

In the Paranal photo gallery you will see new photos of the recent Mercury transit, a photo of the 4 lasers shooting at the Carina nebula and an image showing the Zodiacal light, which can only be seen in very dark locations.

April 2016

“First Light” of the new Four Laser Guide Star Facility

ESO Paranal new 4 laser guide star

Four new lasers have been installed on one of the 8-meter telescopes of the Very Large Telescope on Cerro Paranal in Chile. They are now tested on sky. The photos in the Paranal section show some impressive views of the new facility.
These lasers are now the most powerful lasers used in modern astronomical telescopes.
The purpose of the lasers is to produce 4 light spots in the sodium layer of the mesosphere at 90 km altitude. The spots are analyzed and the information is used in real time to correct for the turbulence of the atmosphere. As a result an image quality similar to that of a space telescope can be achieved.
See more photos of the lasers in action.

November 2015

Atacama Desert in bloom

Atacama Desierto florido 2015, massive appearance of Pata de Guanaco flowers

For the first time since 2010/11 the Atacama desert received significant rainfalls during the last winter.
A few months later the desert appears covered with flowers.

Some new photos show the amazing phenomenon which in Chile is called desierto florido and is linked to the El Nino phenomenon.

Take a look at my related slideshow on Youtube:

Slideshow: Atacama Desert in Bloom

October 2015
UPDATE: the book is sold out and out of print

A new photo book about the Atacama Desert was published by Gerhard Hüdepohl and Hans-Jürgen Pfund.

This new book with over 100 partially double-page photos of landscapes, flora and wildlife of the Atacama desert was recently published. It includes chapters about the Atacama in Chile, one of the driest deserts on earth, about the Altiplano in Bolivia with Salar de Uyuni and the Puna de Atacama in Argentina.

June 2015

New photos from the far north of Chile around Putre

Three vicunas looking curiously at the camera

New photos from the area around Arica and Putre have been uploaded in different sections of the Atacama Gallery.

There are photos of the taruca, a native andean deer, nandu, vicunas, viscachas. Very interesting plants have been photographed in the altiplano, including tillandsia, a bromeliad.


November 2014

New photo book about Paranal Observatory published


This new book “Paranal from the inside” shows a selection of the best photos of the Paranal Observatory taken by the author during 17 years.
With more than 120 photos the reader gets a real inside view of the ESO Very Large Telescope Observatory at Cerro Paranal in Chile, which is home to several of the largest and most advanced telescopes in the world. It shows high-tech science machines, people at work, the desert landscape of the site, rare and exceptional weather conditions, flora and fauna, the construction phase, aerial photos and more. Many of the photos have never been published before.
You can preview and buy the book here:
PARANAL from the inside by Gerhard Hüdepohl

February 2013

Wildlife and landscape of South Georgia Island

New photos of my recent trip to the amazing South Georgia Island have been added. South Georgia is a remote island in the southern ocean that has one of the highest wildlife concentration on earth. Hundred thousands of king penguins, elephant seals, giant wandering albatross and other animals are almost the only inhabitants of this amazing place.

Adult Wandering Albatross taking off after feeding its chick at nest with snow and tussock, Prion Island, South Georgia Island
Adult Wandering Albatross taking off after feeding its chick at nest with snow and tussock, Prion Island, South Georgia Island
gerhard huedepohl