Team Janus History

Team Janus in a nutshell: 2 friends, 2 telescopes, one project!

At the time of the Rencontres du Ciel et de l’Espace in November 2014, we each had a 500mm telescope. Laurent’s in the south of France (known as the Engarouines observatory):

And mine in the Paris region:

We then decided to pool our two telescopes and install mine in Chile. I transported the tube to Chile and had a fork mount made again there. The telescope was finally installed and commissioned at the Hacienda of the Stars at an altitude of 1500m in November 2017, three years in the making. Here’s a video of the installation:

The first of January is linked to the Roman calendar and the god Janus. Janus is the Roman god of beginnings and endings, choices, passage and doors. He is bifrons (« two-headed ») and represented with one face turned towards the past and the other towards the future. He is celebrated on 1 January. His month, Januarius (« January »), marks the beginning of the end of the year in the Roman calendar.

But it’s also the symbol we chose when we created the ‘Janus Team’: 2 friends, 2 telescopes, one project! A telescope in each hemisphere, managed jointly by my friend Laurent Bernasconi and myself. Laurent’s telescope became JANUS NORTH, and mine became JANUS SOUTH.

Michel Meunier, 2017