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Apache Point Observatory Galactic Evolution Experiment
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UVa astronomers to shine light on unseeable stars

A team of University of Virginia astronomers is leading an international effort to take an unprecedented look at red giant stars some 25,000 light years away in the center of the Milky Way galaxy.
If successful, the astronomers say, the project might provide new insight into the Big Bang, how planets formed and how life came to be.

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RE: Apache Point Observatory
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New Mexico State University's Apache Point Observatory has been instrumental in solving a nearly 40-year-old lunar mystery.
On Nov. 10, 1970, the Russian unmanned Luna 17 mission landed on the moon, releasing a robotic rover, called Lunokhod 1, to roam the lunar surface. The rover carried an optical retroreflector, a device that reflects incident light precisely back in the direction from which it comes.
The rover and its retroreflector were last heard from on Sept. 14, 1971.
Now, physicists, led by Tom Murphy, an associate professor at the University of California San Diego, have detected the lost reflector using Apache Point's 3.5-meter telescope.

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Apache Point Observatory Webcam
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MSCLR_s.jpg

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RE: Apache Point Observatory
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An observatory in Sunspot, New Mexico, has received a $9 million grant from the National Science Foundation.
The Apache Point Observatory will use the money to map the distribution of quasars and galaxies in space and the distribution of stars in our own galaxy.

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Title: APOLLO: the Apache Point Observatory Lunar Laser-ranging Operation: Instrument Description and First Detections
Authors: T.W. Murphy, Jr., E.G. Adelberger, J.B.R. Battat, L.N. Carey, C.D. Hoyle, P. LeBlanc, E.L. Michelsen, K. Nordtvedt, A.E. Orin, J.D. Strasburg, C.W. Stubbs, H.E. Swanson, E. Williams
(Version v2)

A next-generation lunar laser ranging apparatus using the 3.5 m telescope at the Apache Point Observatory in southern New Mexico has begun science operation. APOLLO (the Apache Point Observatory Lunar Laser-ranging Operation) has achieved one-millimetre range precision to the moon which should lead to approximately one-order-of-magnitude improvements in the precision of several tests of fundamental properties of gravity. We briefly motivate the scientific goals, and then give a detailed discussion of the APOLLO instrumentation.

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