the site


Maps of the location of the site in Argentina.


Maps showing the topography of the area and light pollution in the northern provinces of Argentina at night from a satellite perspective.


The site is located at Cordon Macón, in the province of Salta in Argentina (see location map below).

The area is part of a high plateau, shared by Argentina and Chile named as the Atacama Puna (desert). The Atacama desert is, according to NASA, National Geographic and other sources, the driest desert in the world. The Macón site was chosen after being surveyed by scientists from the University of Córdoba and the European Southern Observatory during 2008 through 2011.

A video produced by University of Córdoba astronomers which can be found in YouTube is showed at the end of this page. It describes the results of the long time survey of the site and its main characteristics. For now it’s in Spanish.

The following are materials that describe the characteristics of the site.:

  1. 1)Poster presented at a meeting of the Argentine Astronomical Society (La Plata, 2011):              LaPlata-cuadrado.pdf  (a 12 MB poster file)

  2. 2)Tremblin, Schneider, Minier, Durand, and Urban, “Worldwide site comparison for submillimetre astronomy”, Astronomy & Astrophysics, 2012,  arXiv 1210:4930. This article examines the potential for sub-millimeter astronomy and evaluates satellite data for the best observing sites in the world including Cordón Macón.


Video produced by Astronomers from IATE (Instituto de Astronomía Teórica y Experimental) at the Universidad Nacional de Córdoba describing the potential of the site for astronomical observations. (in Spanish).