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Sample records for maidanak astronomical observatory

  1. Contribution of the surface layer turbulence at Maidanak observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ilyasov, S.

    2006-08-01

    The results of night-time microthermal measurements of surface layer optical turbulence at Maidanak observatory in Uzbekistan are presented. The measurements were carried out in July-August 2002 using the micro temperature sensors developed at the University of Nice. Temperature sensors were installed on 8 levels between 3.0 and 25.5m on the preinstalled meteorological mast. Simultaneous measurements of total seeing by Differential Image Motion Monitor (DIMM) allow us estimate the surface layer contribution to the total seeing - was found to be about 8%. The meteorological data, obtained at the same height as DIMM were used to estimate the relation of surface layer turbulence optical intensity to wind speed. It was found that during low wind speed (<0.5 m/s) or calm (windless) weather conditions surface layer turbulence increased which causes the deterioration of the total seeing.

  2. Astronomical observatories

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ponomarev, D. N.

    1983-01-01

    The layout and equipment of astronomical observatories, the oldest scientific institutions of human society are discussed. The example of leading observatories of the USSR allows the reader to familiarize himself with both their modern counterparts, as well as the goals and problems on which astronomers are presently working.

  3. Queen Jadwiga Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wszołek, Bogdan

    2016-06-01

    Private Astronomical Observatory was open in June 2015. The main aim of the observatory is to provide and share astronomical and space knowledge. It collects research instruments and expands didactic infrastructure. Continuously, there is an open call for specialists to join the Honorary Staff of the Observatory.

  4. Svetloe Radio Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smolentsev, Sergey; Rahimov, Ismail

    2013-01-01

    This report summarizes information about the Svetloe Radio Astronomical Observatory activities in 2012. Last year, a number of changes took place in the observatory to improve some technical characteristics and to upgrade some units to their required status. The report provides an overview of current geodetic VLBI activities and gives an outlook for the future.

  5. Zelenchukskaya Radio Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smolentsev, Sergey; Dyakov, Andrei

    2013-01-01

    This report summarizes information about Zelenchukskaya Radio Astronomical Observatory activities in 2012. Last year a number of changes took place in the observatory to improve some technical characteristics and to upgrade some units to the required status. The report provides an overview of current geodetic VLBI activities and gives an outlook for the future.

  6. Trieste Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murdin, P.

    2000-11-01

    Founded in 1866 as the Austrian K. u. K. Maritimes Observatorium, in 1898 the Trieste Astronomical Observatory became an independent institute for research in astronomy. Now it is part of INAF (Istituto Nazionale di Astrofisica) and the Italian council for research in astrophysics. Staff include 20 researchers and 42 technicians and administrators. Research fields are extragalactic, stellar physi...

  7. Strasbourg's "First" astronomical observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heck, André

    2011-08-01

    The turret lantern located at the top of the Strasbourg Hospital Gate is generally considered as the first astronomical observatory of the city, but such a qualification must be treated with caution. The thesis of this paper is that the idea of a tower-observatory was brought back by a local scholar, Julius Reichelt (1637-1717), after he made a trip to Northern Europe around 1666 and saw the "Rundetårn" (Round Tower) recently completed in Copenhagen. There, however, a terrace allowed (and still allows) the full viewing of the sky, and especially of the zenith area where the atmospheric transparency is best. However, there is no such terrace in Strasbourg around the Hospital Gate lantern. Reichelt had also visited Johannes Hevelius who was then developing advanced observational astronomy in Gdansk, but nothing of the kind followed in Strasbourg. Rather, the Hospital Gate observatory was built essentially for the prestige of the city and for the notoriety of the university, and the users of this observing post did not make any significant contributions to the progress of astronomical knowledge. We conclude that the Hospital Gate observatory was only used for rudimentary viewing of bright celestial objects or phenomena relatively low on the horizon.

  8. Cultural heritage of astronomical observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolfschmidt, Gudrun

    2011-06-01

    We present the results of the ICOMOS international symposium ``Cultural Heritage of Astronomical Observatories (around 1900) - From Classical Astronomy to Modern Astrophysics'' (Oct. 2008). The objective of the symposium was to discuss the relevance of modern observatories to the cultural heritage of humankind and to select partner observatories which, due to the date of their construction or to their architectural or scientific importance are comparable to Hamburg Observatory, as international cooperation partners for a serial trans-national application.

  9. Islamic Astronomical Instruments and Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heidarzadeh, Tofigh

    This chapter is a brief survey of astronomical instruments being used and developed in Islamic territories from the eighth to the fifteenth centuries as well as a concise account of major observatories and observational programs in this period.

  10. Astronomical publications of Melbourne Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andropoulos, Jenny Ioanna

    2014-05-01

    During the second half of the 19th century and the first half of the 20th century, four well-equipped government observatories were maintained in Australia - in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide and Perth. These institutions conducted astronomical observations, often in the course of providing a local time service, and they also collected and collated meteorological data. As well, some of these observatories were involved at times in geodetic surveying, geomagnetic recording, gravity measurements, seismology, tide recording and physical standards, so the term "observatory" was being used in a rather broad sense! Despite the international renown that once applied to Williamstown and Melbourne Observatories, relatively little has been written by modern-day scholars about astronomical activities at these observatories. This research is intended to rectify this situation to some extent by gathering, cataloguing and analysing the published astronomical output of the two Observatories to see what contributions they made to science and society. It also compares their contributions with those of Sydney, Adelaide and Perth Observatories. Overall, Williamstown and Melbourne Observatories produced a prodigious amount of material on astronomy in scientific and technical journals, in reports and in newspapers. The other observatories more or less did likewise, so no observatory of those studied markedly outperformed the others in the long term, especially when account is taken of their relative resourcing in staff and equipment.

  11. An astronomical observatory for Peru

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    del Mar, Juan Quintanilla; Sicardy, Bruno; Giraldo, Víctor Ayma; Callo, Víctor Raúl Aguilar

    2011-06-01

    Peru and France are to conclude an agreement to provide Peru with an astronomical observatory equipped with a 60-cm diameter telescope. The principal aims of this project are to establish and develop research and teaching in astronomy. Since 2004, a team of researchers from Paris Observatory has been working with the University of Cusco (UNSAAC) on the educational, technical and financial aspects of implementing this venture. During an international astronomy conference in Cusco in July 2009, the foundation stone of the future Peruvian Observatory was laid at the top of Pachatusan Mountain. UNSAAC, represented by its Rector, together with the town of Oropesa and the Cusco regional authority, undertook to make the sum of 300,000€ available to the project. An agreement between Paris Observatory and UNSAAC now enables Peruvian students to study astronomy through online teaching.

  12. Observatory Sponsoring Astronomical Image Contest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2005-05-01

    Forget the headphones you saw in the Warner Brothers thriller Contact, as well as the guttural throbs emanating from loudspeakers at the Very Large Array in that 1997 movie. In real life, radio telescopes aren't used for "listening" to anything - just like visible-light telescopes, they are used primarily to make images of astronomical objects. Now, the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) wants to encourage astronomers to use radio-telescope data to make truly compelling images, and is offering cash prizes to winners of a new image contest. Radio Galaxy Fornax A Radio Galaxy Fornax A Radio-optical composite image of giant elliptical galaxy NGC 1316, showing the galaxy (center), a smaller companion galaxy being cannibalized by NGC 1316, and the resulting "lobes" (orange) of radio emission caused by jets of particles spewed from the core of the giant galaxy Click on image for more detail and images CREDIT: Fomalont et al., NRAO/AUI/NSF "Astronomy is a very visual science, and our radio telescopes are capable of producing excellent images. We're sponsoring this contest to encourage astronomers to make the extra effort to turn good images into truly spectacular ones," said NRAO Director Fred K.Y. Lo. The contest, offering a grand prize of $1,000, was announced at the American Astronomical Society's meeting in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The image contest is part of a broader NRAO effort to make radio astronomical data and images easily accessible and widely available to scientists, students, teachers, the general public, news media and science-education professionals. That effort includes an expanded image gallery on the observatory's Web site. "We're not only adding new radio-astronomy images to our online gallery, but we're also improving the organization and accessibility of the images," said Mark Adams, head of education and public outreach (EPO) at NRAO. "Our long-term goal is to make the NRAO Image Gallery an international resource for radio astronomy imagery

  13. Astronomical observatory for shuttle. Phase A study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Guthals, D. L.

    1973-01-01

    The design, development, and configuration of the astronomical observatory for shuttle are discussed. The characteristics of the one meter telescope in the spaceborne observatory are described. A variety of basic spectroscopic and image recording instruments and detectors which will permit a large variety of astronomical observations are reported. The stDC 37485elines which defined the components of the observatory are outlined.

  14. Astronomical observatories of the Soviet Union

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ponomarev, Dmitrii Nikolaevich

    Various types of astronomical instruments are described, including optical telescopes, radio telescopes, and radiation detectors. Soviet ground-based astronomical observatories are described as well as those aboard satellites and space stations.

  15. Astronomical Limiting Magnitude at Langkawi Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zainuddin, Mohd. Zambri; Loon, Chin Wei; Harun, Saedah

    2010-07-01

    Astronomical limiting magnitude is an indicator for astronomer to conduct astronomical measurement at a particular site. It gives an idea to astronomer of that site what magnitude of celestial object can be measured. Langkawi National Observatory (LNO) is situated at Bukit Malut with latitude 6°18' 25'' North and longitude 99°46' 52'' East in Langkawi Island. Sky brightness measurement has been performed at this site using the standard astronomical technique. The value of the limiting magnitude measured is V = 18.6+/-1.0 magnitude. This will indicate that astronomical measurement at Langkawi observatory can only be done for celestial objects having magnitude less than V = 18.6 magnitudes.

  16. Goddard Geophysical and Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Figueroa, Ricardo

    2013-01-01

    This report summarizes the technical parameters and the technical staff of the VLBI system at the fundamental station GGAO. It also gives an overview about the VLBI activities during the report year. The Goddard Geophysical and Astronomical Observatory (GGAO) consists of a 5-meter radio telescope for VLBI, a new 12-meter radio telescope for VLBI2010 development, a 1-meter reference antenna for microwave holography development, an SLR site that includes MOBLAS-7, the NGSLR development system, and a 48" telescope for developmental two-color Satellite Laser Ranging, a GPS timing and development lab, a DORIS system, meteorological sensors, and a hydrogen maser. In addition, we are a fiducial IGS site with several IGS/IGSX receivers. GGAO is located on the east coast of the United States in Maryland. It is approximately 15 miles NNE of Washington, D.C. in Greenbelt, Maryland.

  17. Developing an astronomical observatory in Paraguay

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Troche-Boggino, Alexis E.

    Background: Paraguay has some heritage from the astronomy of the Guarani Indians. Buenaventura Suarez S.J. was a pioneer astronomer in the country in the XVIII century. He built various astronomical instruments and imported others from England. He observed eclipses of Jupiter's satellites and of the Sun and Moon. He published his data in a book and through letters. The Japanese O.D.A. has collaborated in obtaining equipment and advised their government to assist Paraguay in building an astronomical observatory, constructing a moving-roof observatory and training astronomers as observatory operators. Future: An astronomical center is on the horizon and some possible fields of research are being considered. Goal: To improve education at all possible levels by not only observing sky wonders, but also showing how instruments work and teaching about data and image processing, saving data and building a data base. Students must learn how a modern scientist works.

  18. The Multinational History of Strasbourg Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heck, André

    Strasbourg Astronomical Observatory is quite an interesting place for historians: several changes of nationality between France and Germany, high-profile scientists having been based there, big projects born or installed in its walls, and so on. Most of the documents circulating on the history of the Observatory and on related matters have however been so far poorly referenced, if at all. This made necessary the compilation of a volume such as this one, offering fully-documented historical facts and references on the first decades of the Observatory history, authored by both French and German specialists.

  19. Astronomical research at the Hopkins Phoenix Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hopkins, J. L.

    1985-01-01

    After trying astrophotography and radio astronomy it was decided that the best way to do meaningful astronomical research at a small private observatory was by doing photoelectric photometry. Having the observatory located in the back yard of a private residence affors the luxury of observing any time the sky conditions permit. Also modest equipment is all that is needed to do accurate UBV photometry of stars 8th magnitude and brighter. Since beginning in 1980 the Hopkins Phoenix Observatory has published papers on several RS CVn star systems, 31 Cygni, 22 Vul, 18 Tau Per, and has followed the 1982-1984 eclipse of Epsilon Aurigae from its start to the present with over 1000 UBV measurements. In addition the Hopkins Phoenix Observatory has developed several pieces of photometry equipment including the HPO PEPH-101 photometer head and photon counting electronics.

  20. Using Virtual Observatory Tools for Astronomical Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kim, Sang Chul; Taylor, John D.; Panter, Benjamin; Sohn, Sangmo Tony; Heavens, Alan F.; Mann, Robert G.

    2005-06-01

    Construction of the Virtual Observatory (VO) is a great concern to the astronomical community in the 21st century. We present an outline of the concept and necessity of the VO and the current status of various VO projects including the 15 national ones and the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA). %, and of Grid project. We summarize the possible science cases that could be solved by using the VO data/tools, real science cases which are the results of using current VO tools, and our own work of using AstroGrid, the United Kingdom national VO, for a research on star formation history of galaxies.

  1. Future Astronomical Observatories on the Moon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burns, Jack O. (Editor); Mendell, Wendell W. (Editor)

    1988-01-01

    Papers at a workshop which consider the topic astronomical observations from a lunar base are presented. In part 1, the rationale for performing astronomy on the Moon is established and economic factors are considered. Part 2 includes concepts for individual lunar based telescopes at the shortest X-ray and gamma ray wavelengths, for high energy cosmic rays, and at optical and infrared wavelengths. Lunar radio frequency telescopes are considered in part 3, and engineering considerations for lunar base observatories are discussed in part 4. Throughout, advantages and disadvantages of lunar basing compared to terrestrial and orbital basing of observatories are weighted. The participants concluded that the Moon is very possibly the best location within the inner solar system from which to perform front-line astronomical research.

  2. Environmental effects on lunar astronomical observatories

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Stewart W.; Taylor, G. Jeffrey; Wetzel, John P.

    1992-01-01

    The Moon offers a stable platform with excellent seeing conditions for astronomical observations. Some troublesome aspects of the lunar environment will need to be overcome to realize the full potential of the Moon as an observatory site. Mitigation of negative effects of vacuum, thermal radiation, dust, and micrometeorite impact is feasible with careful engineering and operational planning. Shields against impact, dust, and solar radiation need to be developed. Means of restoring degraded surfaces are probably essential for optical and thermal control surfaces deployed in long-lifetime lunar facilities. Precursor missions should be planned to validate and enhance the understanding of the lunar environment (e.g., dust behavior without and with human presence) and to determine environmental effects on surfaces and components. Precursor missions should generate data useful in establishing keepout zones around observatory facilities where rocket launches and landings, mining, and vehicular traffic could be detrimental to observatory operation.

  3. Environmental effects on lunar astronomical observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, Stewart W.; Taylor, G. Jeffrey; Wetzel, John P.

    1992-09-01

    The Moon offers a stable platform with excellent seeing conditions for astronomical observations. Some troublesome aspects of the lunar environment will need to be overcome to realize the full potential of the Moon as an observatory site. Mitigation of negative effects of vacuum, thermal radiation, dust, and micrometeorite impact is feasible with careful engineering and operational planning. Shields against impact, dust, and solar radiation need to be developed. Means of restoring degraded surfaces are probably essential for optical and thermal control surfaces deployed in long-lifetime lunar facilities. Precursor missions should be planned to validate and enhance the understanding of the lunar environment (e.g., dust behavior without and with human presence) and to determine environmental effects on surfaces and components. Precursor missions should generate data useful in establishing keepout zones around observatory facilities where rocket launches and landings, mining, and vehicular traffic could be detrimental to observatory operation.

  4. 110th Anniversary of the Engelhardt Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nefedyev, Y.

    2012-09-01

    The Engelhardt Astronomical Observatory (EAO) was founded in September 21, 1901. The history of creation of the Engelhard Astronomical Observatory was begun in 1897 with transfer a complimentary to the Kazan University of the unique astronomical equipment of the private observatory in Dresden by known astronomer Vasily Pavlovichem Engelgardt. Having stopped astronomical activity owing to advanced years and illnesses Engelgardt has decided to offer all tools and library of the Astronomical observatory of the Kazan University. Vasily Pavlovich has put the first condition of the donation that his tools have been established as soon as possible and on them supervision are started. In 1898 the decree of Emperor had been allocated means and the ground for construction of the Astronomical observatory is allocated. There is the main historical telescope of the Engelhard Astronomical Observatory the 12-inch refractor which was constructed by English master Grubbom in 1875. The unique tool of the Engelhard Astronomical Observatory is unique in the world now a working telescope heliometer. It's one of the first heliometers, left workshops Repsolda. It has been made in 1874 and established in Engelgardt observatory in 1908 in especially for him the constructed round pavilion in diameter of 3.6 m. Today the Engelhard Astronomical Observatory is the only thing scientifically - educational and cultural - the cognitive astronomical center, located on territory from Moscow up to the most east border of Russia. Currently, the observatory is preparing to enter the protected UNESCO World Heritage List.

  5. Bucharest-Nikolaev Astronomical Observatories' Collaboration in Astronomy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pinigin, Gennadiy; Stavinschi, Magda

    2008-09-01

    Scientific collaboration between Bucharest Observatory of the Astronomical Institute (Romania) and Nikolaev Astronomical Observatory (Ukraine), based on the similar research directions and scientific traditions from the beginning of 1990s. The main research field was positional astronomy with compilation of catalogues of star positions in the fields around selected ERS from the CCD observations in Nikolaev and photographical observations in the Bucharest Observatory. Many conferences and workshops, mutual visits of astronomers from both observatories were organized and held in Nikolaev and Bucharest.

  6. The New North Georgia Astronomical Observatory.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, J. H.; Chapman, E. K.

    1999-12-01

    The mission of NGCSU's observatory over the last 30 years has been to provide a quality environment for student and public viewing and a professional platform for student/faculty research. During the fall of 1997 a large illuminated parking lot was constructed less than 100 feet from the old observatory site. Fortunately, the administration at that time recognized the impact that the lot would have on the observatory's mission and was able to find funds to relocate the Boller & Chivens 16 inch telescope to a new observatory built on school property four miles west of the campus. The new observatory became operational at the beginning of the fall semester 1999. We report here on the outcome of the many unique design features which we tried to incorporate into the building. Features for optimizing student and public viewing such as a "downslope" roll away enclosure and a wide "no steps" observing deck entrance. An ongoing student project to measure and compare photometric calibration coefficients as well as zenith sky brightness and "seeing" parameters with previously determined parameters will evaluate the building features which were designed to enhance the performance of the telescope and its instrumentation. We would especially like to thank university president (retired) Dr. Sherman R. Day for supporting this project, not only financially, but also for supporting the legacy of astronomical education and student research at NGCSU. We also would like to thank the current president, Dr. Nathaniel Hansford, and his administration for continuing that support.

  7. The Virtual Astronomical Observatory Users Forum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muench, August A.; Emery Bunn, S.; Astronomical Observatory, Virtual

    2013-01-01

    We present the online forum astrobabel.com, which has the goal of being a gathering place for the collective community intelligence about astronomical computing. The audience for this forum is anyone engaged in the analysis of astronomical or planetary data, whether that data be observational or theoretical. It is a free, community driven site where discussions are formulated primarily around the "question and answer" format. Current topics on the forum range from “Is there a photometry package in Python?” to “Where are the support forums for astronomy software packages?” and “Why is my SDSS SkyQuery query missing galaxies?” The poster will detail the full scope of discussions in the forum, and provide some basic guidelines for ensuring high quality forum posts. We will highlight the ways astronomers can discover and participate in discussions. Further, we view this as an excellent opportunity to gather feedback and feature requests from AAS221 attendees. Acknowledgement: The Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO) is managed by the VAO, LLC, a non-profit company established as a partnership of the Associated Universities, Inc. and the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc. The VAO is sponsored by the National Science Foundation and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

  8. Astronomical database and VO-tools of Nikolaev Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mazhaev, A. E.; Protsyuk, Yu. I.

    2010-05-01

    Results of work in 2006-2009 on creation of astronomical databases aiming at development of Nikolaev Virtual Observatory (NVO) are presented in this abstract. Results of observations and theirreduction, which were obtained during the whole history of Nikolaev Astronomical Observatory (NAO), are included in the databases. The databases may be considered as a basis for construction of a data centre. Images of different regions of the celestial sphere have been stored in NAO since 1929. About 8000 photo plates were obtained during observations in the 20th century. Observations with CCD have been started since 1996. Annually, telescopes of NAO, using CCD cameras, create data volume of several tens of gigabytes (GB) in the form of CCD images and up to 100 GB of video records. At the end of 2008, the volume of accumulated data in the form of CCD images was about 300 GB. Problems of data volume growth are common in astronomy, nuclear physics and bioinformatics. Therefore, the astronomical community needs to use archives, databases and distributed grid computing to cope with this problem in astronomy. The International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA) was formed in June 2002 with a mission to "enable the international utilization of astronomical archives..." The NVO was created at the NAO website in 2008, and consists of three main parts. The first part contains 27 astrometric stellar catalogues with short descriptions. The files of catalogues were compiled in the standard VOTable format using eXtensible Markup Language (XML), and they are available for downloading. This is an example of the so-called science-ready product. The VOTable format was developed by the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA) for exchange of tabular data. A user may download these catalogues and open them using any standalone application that supports standards of the IVOA. There are several directions of development for such applications, for example, search of catalogues and images

  9. Astronomical analysis of the taosi observatory site

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, C. Y.

    2009-01-01

    An ancient observatory was unearthed recently at Taosi site. This paper discussed the figure of the relic, analyzed the relationship between the 12 backsights and calendar date using astronomical method, and compared the simulated observation with theoretic computation. The investigation shows that backsight E2---E12 indicated the directions of sunrise in the whole year, which were roughly equally distributed and offered an unequal calendar system. The backsight E1 indicated the south-end of the moonrise, giving a time symbol of 18---19 years. This building must be a complex of solar observation, time service, solar worship, and sacrificial ritual

  10. Museum of history of Kyiv Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kazantseva, L. V.

    2007-09-01

    It is possible to name Astronomical Observatory of the Kiev University as a complex monument to a history of science without exaggeration. Though officially museum hardly exists only for 10 years, the efforts of several generations of the employees keep 160 years of its history. There is a building, which V. beretti has projected and has constructed in 1840-1845 specially for Observatory, pavilions of different design for instruments, great collection of tools and devices, the oldest of which was made by the order in 1838. Besides, scientific and personal archives of many employees attract the large interest. Manuscripts and documents are dated from 1832. The museum contains more than 200 journals of observations, materials of 20 expeditions for observations of solar eclipses, about13000 photo snapshots.

  11. Research on schedulers for astronomical observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Colome, Josep; Colomer, Pau; Guàrdia, Josep; Ribas, Ignasi; Campreciós, Jordi; Coiffard, Thierry; Gesa, Lluis; Martínez, Francesc; Rodler, Florian

    2012-09-01

    The main task of a scheduler applied to astronomical observatories is the time optimization of the facility and the maximization of the scientific return. Scheduling of astronomical observations is an example of the classical task allocation problem known as the job-shop problem (JSP), where N ideal tasks are assigned to M identical resources, while minimizing the total execution time. A problem of higher complexity, called the Flexible-JSP (FJSP), arises when the tasks can be executed by different resources, i.e. by different telescopes, and it focuses on determining a routing policy (i.e., which machine to assign for each operation) other than the traditional scheduling decisions (i.e., to determine the starting time of each operation). In most cases there is no single best approach to solve the planning system and, therefore, various mathematical algorithms (Genetic Algorithms, Ant Colony Optimization algorithms, Multi-Objective Evolutionary algorithms, etc.) are usually considered to adapt the application to the system configuration and task execution constraints. The scheduling time-cycle is also an important ingredient to determine the best approach. A shortterm scheduler, for instance, has to find a good solution with the minimum computation time, providing the system with the capability to adapt the selected task to varying execution constraints (i.e., environment conditions). We present in this contribution an analysis of the task allocation problem and the solutions currently in use at different astronomical facilities. We also describe the schedulers for three different projects (CTA, CARMENES and TJO) where the conclusions of this analysis are applied to develop a suitable routine.

  12. The First Astronomical Observatory in Cluj-Napoca

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szenkovits, Ferenc

    2008-09-01

    One of the most important cities of Romania is Cluj-Napoca (Kolozsvár, Klausenburg). This is a traditional center of education, with many universities and high schools. From the second half of the 18th century the University of Cluj has its own Astronomical Observatory, serving for didactical activities and scientific researches. The famous astronomer Maximillian Hell was one of those Jesuits who put the base of this Astronomical Observatory. Our purpose is to offer a short history of the beginnings of this Astronomical Observatory.

  13. 150th Anniversary of the Astronomical Observatory Library of Sciences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Solntseva, T.

    The scientific library of the Astronomical observatory of Kyiv Taras Shevchenko University is one of the oldest ones of such a type in Ukraine. Our Astronomical Observatory and its scientific library will celebrate 150th anniversary of their foundation. 900 volumes of duplicates of Olbers' private library underlay our library. These ones were acquired by Russian Academy of Sciences for Poulkovo observatory in 1841 but according to Struve's order were transmitted to Kyiv Saint Volodymyr University. These books are of great value. There are works edited during Copernicus', Kepler's, Galilei's, Newton's, Descartes' lifetime. Our library contains more than 100000 units of storage - monographs, periodical astronomical editions from the first (Astronomische Nachrichten, Astronomical journal, Monthly Notices etc.), editions of the majority of the astronomical observatories and institutions of the world, unique astronomical atlases and maps

  14. Orbiting Astronomical Observatory-C (OAO-C): Press kit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Allaway, H. G.

    1972-01-01

    Mission planning for the Orbiting Astronomical Observatory-C (OAO-C) is presented. The characteristics of the observatory and its capabilities are described. The following experiments are discussed: (1) Princeton Experiment Package, (2) X-ray experiment, and (3) guest investigator program. Results of the OAO-2 observatory are presented. A tabulation of flight events is included.

  15. Astronomical Observatory of Belgrade from 1924 to 1955

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Radovanac, M.

    2014-12-01

    History of the Astronomical Observatory in Belgrade, as the presentation is done here, become the field of interest to the author of the present monograph in early 2002. Then, together with Luka C. Popovic, during the Conference "Development of Astronomy among Serbs II" held in early April of that year, he prepared a paper entitled "Astronomska opservatorija tokom Drugog Svetskog rata" (Astronomical Observatory in the Second World War). This paper was based on the archives material concerning the Astronomical Observatory which has been professionally bearing in mind the author's position the subject of his work.

  16. Daytime School Guided Visits to an Astronomical Observatory in Brazil

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Colombo, Pedro Donizete, Jr.; Silva, Cibelle Celestino; Aroca, Silvia Calbo

    2010-01-01

    This article analyzes the activity "Daytime School Guided Visits" at an astronomical observatory in Brazil with pupils from primary school. The adopted research methodology relied on questionnaire applications and semistructured interviews. The objectives were to identify the influences of the visits on learning of astronomical concepts…

  17. Daytime School Guided Visits to an Astronomical Observatory in Brazil

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Colombo, Pedro Donizete, Jr.; Silva, Cibelle Celestino; Aroca, Silvia Calbo

    2010-01-01

    This article analyzes the activity "Daytime School Guided Visits" at an astronomical observatory in Brazil with pupils from primary school. The adopted research methodology relied on questionnaire applications and semistructured interviews. The objectives were to identify the influences of the visits on learning of astronomical concepts…

  18. Belgrade Astronomical Observatory during the Second World War

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Popović, Luka C.; Radovanac, Milan

    2002-04-01

    On the basis of the archives of the Belgrade Astronomical Observatory, a review of its activity during the Second World War is given. In the Appendix we give the list of the people employed at the Observatory in that time as well as the war damages to the buildings and telescopes.

  19. Astronomical Data Integration Beyond the Virtual Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lemson, G.; Laurino, O.

    2015-09-01

    "Data integration" generally refers to the process of combining data from different source data bases into a unified view. Much work has been devoted in this area by the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA), allowing users to discover and access databases through standard protocols. However, different archives present their data through their own schemas and users must still select, filter, and combine data for each archive individually. An important reason for this is that the creation of common data models that satisfy all sub-disciplines is fraught with difficulties. Furthermore it requires a substantial amount of work for data providers to present their data according to some standard representation. We will argue that existing standards allow us to build a data integration framework that works around these problems. The particular framework requires the implementation of the IVOA Table Access Protocol (TAP) only. It uses the newly developed VO data modelling language (VO-DML) specification, which allows one to define extensible object-oriented data models using a subset of UML concepts through a simple XML serialization language. A rich mapping language allows one to describe how instances of VO-DML data models are represented by the TAP service, bridging the possible mismatch between a local archive's schema and some agreed-upon representation of the astronomical domain. In this so called local-as-view approach to data integration, “mediators" use the mapping prescriptions to translate queries phrased in terms of the common schema to the underlying TAP service. This mapping language has a graphical representation, which we expose through a web based graphical “drag-and-drop-and-connect" interface. This service allows any user to map the holdings of any TAP service to the data model(s) of choice. The mappings are defined and stored outside of the data sources themselves, which allows the interface to be used in a kind of crowd-sourcing effort

  20. Astronomical Observatory of Belgrade from 1956 to 1975

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Radovanac, M.

    2010-06-01

    Although the present monograph "Astronomical Observatory of Belgrade from 1956 to 1975" is an independent work, it is in fact a continuation of the work done by the author and published in the series of the Publications of the Astronomical Society "Rudjer Boskovic" under the title "Astronomical Observatory of Belgrade from 1945 to 1955" in the Proceedings of the conference "Development of Astronomy among Serbs III", no. 6, pp. 55-200 in 2005; that manuscript in turn is an extension of the earlier paper (written together with Luka C. Popovic) and published in the series of the Publications of Astronomical Observatory of Belgrade "Development of Astronomy among Serbs II", no. 72, pp. 133-145 in 2002. Thus the three papers constitute a detailed review of the work of the Astronomical Observatory of Belgrade in the period of 35 years (of the total of 122 years) of its relatively recent history, from 1940 to 1975; this review is prepared using the archive material: general type of documents, notes of various meetings, especially the meetings of the Council of the Observatory, Scientific council and work plans, reports, correspondence, etc.

  1. ``Route of astronomical observatories'' project: Classical observatories from the Renaissance to the rise of astrophysics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolfschmidt, Gudrun

    2016-10-01

    Observatories offer a good possibility for serial transnational applications. For example one can choose groups like baroque or neoclassical observatories, solar physics observatories or a group of observatories equipped with the same kind of instruments or made by famous firms. I will discuss what has been achieved and show examples, like the route of astronomical observatories, the transition from classical astronomy to modern astrophysics. I will also discuss why the implementation of the World Heritage & Astronomy initiative is difficult and why there are problems to nominate observatories for election in the national tentative lists.

  2. Required technologies for lunar astronomical observatories

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Johnson, Stewart W.; Wetzel, John P.

    1992-01-01

    Each of the major new observatories proposed to take advantage of the characteristics of the lunar environment requires appropriate advances in technology. These technologies are in the areas of contamination/interference control, test and evaluation, manufacturing, construction, autonomous operations and maintenance, power and heating/cooling, stable precision structures, optics, parabolic antennas, and communications/control. Telescopes for the lunar surface need to be engineered to operate for long periods with minimal intervention by humans or robots. What is essential for lunar observatory operation is enforcement of a systems engineering approach that makes compatible all lunar operations associated with habitation, resource development, and science.

  3. 21st century astronomical observatories on the moon

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burns, Jack O.

    1988-01-01

    The advantages and disadvantages of building astronomical observatories on the moon are described. Several modest facilities that could be placed near an early lunar base are described, such as a 1-m optical telescope and a gamma-ray burst detector. Several more elaborate observatories are discussed, such as a lunar far-side very low frequency array, an optical interferometer, and a moon-earth ultralong baseline radio interferometer.

  4. 400 years astronomical observatory in Jena

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schielicke, Reinhard E.

    ``Nam cum aliquod observatorium mihi comparaverim, ... '': ``As I have equiped my observatory now'', Georg Limnaeus, professor of mathematics in Jena from 1588 to 1611, wrote on 24 April 1598, ``I have decided to make friends with some experts by letter; I know from your Prodromus that you are one of them''. The letter was addressed to Johannes Kepler and was related to his first work about the ``Mysterium cosmographicum''. Kepler sent some copies of his paper to Galileo Galilei, Tycho Brahe, Reimar Ursus and also to Limnaeus in Jena from the Frankfurt Book Fair in 1597. Limnaeus gave him - apart from the words expressing praise but which actually were meaningless concerning Kepler's ideas - the information about Brahe Kepler had asked for and which may have promoted his move to Prague. The above mentioned observatory is considered to be the first one in Jena. Astronomy had already been established as a subject since the establishment of the ``Hohe Schule'' in 1548 and since the foundation of the university ten years later. Nothing is known about the instruments and the location of the observatory. Limnaeus did not belong to the taxpaying house-owners of which there exists an index; he obviously rented a flat. To all appearances the correspondence announced was not continued either. For the following centuries the professors Heinrich Hoffmann, Erhard Weigel, Georg Albrecht and Georg Erhard Hamberger are named in the literature running the observatory in Jena. The ``Herzogliche Sternwarte'' fitted out under Goethe's overall supervision in 1813 eventually developed into the university institute of today.

  5. Detroit Observatory: nineteenth-century training ground for astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whitesell, Patricia S.

    2003-12-01

    Detroit Observatory was founded in 1854 at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA, by Henry Philip Tappan, the University's first President. In 2004, the University celebrates Detroit Observatory's sesquicentennial year. Tappan named his creation the "Detroit Observatory" to honour the city's major benefactors. Tappan, who was inaugurated in 1852, was a visionary leader in the history of higher education. The creation of an astronomical observatory was one of his first steps toward the integration of a new scientific course with the traditional classical course of study, following the Prussian model of higher education. Tappan's observatory was built in the frontier state of Michigan at a modest cost, yet it was equipped with the best European and American instruments available. The facility was impressive, but Tappan's success in launching the University of Michigan to the forefront of American astronomical science was achieved through the recruitment of the renowned Prussian astronomer, Franz Brünnow, of the Berlin Observatory. The instruction in precision astronomy Brünnow offered to American students produced some of the most notable astronomers of the era, which led to the recognition of an "Ann Arbor School of Astronomy". Subsequent Directors and Assistants, including James Watson, Mark Harrington, J. Martin Schaeberle, and Asaph Hall Jr., produced students with exceptional talent in astronomy, geodesy, surveying and meteorology. Michigan's talent pool was the widely deployed across the nation. This paper documents and preserves the history, and serves as a focal point for celebrating in 2004 the 150-year milestone in Detroit Observatory's fascinating history.

  6. The University of Jaén Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martí, Josep; Luque-Escamilla, Pedro L.; García-Hernández, María T.

    2017-01-01

    We present a description and instrumental characterization of the photometric equipment of the Astronomical Observatory of the University of Jaén. The observatory hosts a 41 cm automated telescope inside a 4 m dome located at the university main campus, in the outskirts of the city of Jaén (Spain). This facility is used for educational, outreach and occasional scientific research on bright stellar objects. Despite the observatory location in a light polluted urban area, its performance for differential photometry studies has proven to be very acceptable. The discovery of the Be star LS I +5979 as a peculiar eclipsing binary system is so far the most relevant achievement.

  7. The Natural satellite database of the Main Astronomical Observatory of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine. An overview

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kulyk, Irina; Yizhakevych, Yelena; Pakuliak, Lyudmila

    2013-05-01

    The dynamical studies and development of new ephemerides require astrometric observations covering long time intervals. The current progress in accuracy of astrometric catalogues provided by space missions and development of new approaches to the extracting information bring new challenges to derive high precision astrometric positions from photographic plates collected during early epochs. More than 40-year long period of the observation activity (1949-1990) at the Main Astronomical Observatory of National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine (Golosiiv) led to the accumulation of about 1800 photographic plates with the images of planets and their satellites. 11 instruments at 9 observational sites were involved in the observations, however, the bulk of the data were obtained with two telescopes: Tepfer Double Long-Focus Astrograph (D=400mm, F=5500mm) and Zeiss Double Wide-Angle Astrograph (D=400mm, F=2200mm), both of them were located at Golosiiv. 60-cm ZEISS Reflector (D=600 mm, F=7500mm) located at high-altitude observational station at Mount Maidanak (Uzbekistan) was also intensively used for the observations of solar system objects during the period of 1986-1990.

  8. Pro-Amateur Observatories as a Significant Resource for Professional Astronomers - Taurus Hill Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haukka, H.; Hentunen, V.-P.; Nissinen, M.; Salmi, T.; Aartolahti, H.; Juutilainen, J.; Vilokki, H.

    2013-09-01

    Taurus Hill Observatory (THO), observatory code A95, is an amateur observatory located in Varkaus, Finland. The observatory is maintained by the local astronomical association of Warkauden Kassiopeia [8]. THO research team has observed and measured various stellar objects and phenomena. Observatory has mainly focuse d on asteroid [1] and exoplanet light curve measurements, observing the gamma rays burst, supernova discoveries and monitoring [2]. We also do long term monitoring projects [3]. THO research team has presented its research work on previous EPSC meetings ([4], [5],[6], [7]) and got very supportive reactions from the European planetary science community. The results and publications that pro-amateur based observatories, like THO, have contributed, clearly demonstrates that pro-amateurs area significant resource for the professional astronomers now and even more in the future.

  9. Astronomy Against Terrorism: an Educational Astronomical Observatory Project in Peru

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ishitsuka, M.; Montes, H.; Kuroda, T.; Morimoto, M.; Ishitsuka, J.

    2003-05-01

    The Cosmos Coronagraphic Observatory was completely destroyed by terrorists in 1988. In 1995, in coordination with the Minister of Education of Peru, a project to construct a new Educational Astronomical Observatory has been executed. The main purpose of the observatory is to promote an interest in basic space sciences in young students from school to university levels, through basic astronomical studies and observations. The planned observatory will be able to lodge 25 visitors; furthermore an auditorium, a library and a computer room will be constructed to improve the interest of people in astronomy. Two 15-cm refractor telescopes, equipped with a CCD camera and a photometer, will be available for observations. Also a 6-m dome will house a 60-cm class reflector telescope, which will be donated soon, thanks to a fund collected and organized by the Nishi-Harima Astronomical Observatory in Japan. In addition a new modern planetarium donated by the Government of Japan will be installed in Lima, the capital of Peru. These installations will be widely open to serve the requirements of people interested in science.

  10. Observatory Publishes Memoir of Pioneer Radio Astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2006-07-01

    One of the pioneers of radio astronomy tells her story of the formative years of that science in a memoir published by the National Radio Astronomy Observatory. Dr. Nan Dieter Conklin's book, Two Paths to Heaven's Gate, recounts her experiences making important scientific discoveries in an era when astronomy's "vision" was first extending beyond the light discernable to human eyes. Book Cover CREDIT: NRAO/AUI/NSF Conklin's story is remarkable not only because of her impressive scientific achievements, but also "because she was a woman who nevertheless pursued and succeeded in science -- the first U.S. woman whose Ph.D. thesis was based on her own radio astronomy research and the first U.S. woman to publish original radio astronomy research in a refereed journal -- and because she lived and worked with the degenerative disease multiple sclerosis," according to Claire Hooker of the University of Toronto. In the memoir, Conklin recounts her career and life from the awakening stirred by her first astronomy course at Goucher College in Baltimore, to junior research jobs in Washington, D.C., to graduate school at Harvard and ultimately to the faculty of the University of California at Berkeley. In addition to providing an insider's view of the process of scientific discovery, Conklin also gives the reader a fascinating look at a scientific community and social structure that, though only a half-century removed from the present, was vastly different from today's. Along the way, Conklin candidly reveals the person behind the science -- the person who dealt with the joys and tragedies of life while remaining dedicated to unlocking the secrets of the Universe. "Nan was and remains an inspiration to myself and hundreds of others in the field, both for her scientific acumen and for her ability to overcome extraordinary personal challenges," said Miller Goss of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory. The National Radio Astronomy Observatory is a facility of the National

  11. Advantages of a Lunar Cryogenic Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burke, James; Kaltenegger, Lisa

    2017-04-01

    ESA and collaborating agencies are preparing to establish a Moon Village at a south polar site. Robotic precursor missions will include resource prospecting in permanently shadowed cold traps. The environment there is favorable for infrared and millimeter-wave astronomy. In this paper we examine the evolutionary development of a cryogenic observatory, beginning with small telescopes robotically installed and operated in conjunction with prospecting precursor missions, and continuing into later phases supported from the Moon Village. Relay communications into and out of the cold traps may be shared or else provided by dedicated links. Candidate locations can be selected with the help of data from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. The first telescope will be primarily a proof-of-concept demonstrator but it can have scientific and applications uses too, supplementing other space-based survey instruments observing astrophysical objects and potentially hazardous asteroids and comets. A south polar site sees only half or the sky but that half includes the galactic center and many other interesting targets. The telescopes can stare at any object for as long as desired, providing monitoring capabilities for transiting or radial velocity planet searches, like NASA's TESS mission. In addition such telescopes are opening the prospect of gathering spectroscopic data on exoplanet atmospheres and cool stars - from UV information to assess the activity of a star to VIS to IR spectral data of the atmosphere and even atmospheric biosignatures. Preliminary design of the first telescope might be funded under a NASA call for lunar science payload concepts. An important additional product can be educational and outreach uses of the observatory, especially for the benefit of people in the developing world who can do southern hemisphere follow-up observations.

  12. Outreach Activities of National Astronomical Observatory of Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ono, T.; Watanabe, J.; Agata, H.

    2006-08-01

    The activities on the outreach issues in the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ) are mainly conducted by the Public Relations Center established in June 1998. Its mission is to present the latest findings in astronomy to the public in a manner that is understandable, contemporary, and exciting. For this purpose, we provide a wide range of services and deliver a variety of scientific information through multiple ways. We also maintain an effective partnership with lots of dissemination experts working at the public observatories, the science museums, and the planetariums in Japan. The representative outreach activities in NAOJ are follows. • Telephone service to answer the questions on astronomy (about 10,000 calls a year) • Press release (about 60 a year) to about 100 registered journalists • Press Members' Lounge" for registered journalists • A special seminar for science journalists every year • Service of astronomical ephemeredes, and nautical almanacs. • Weekly news letter service named "Astro-Topics" • Monthly paper magazine "NAOJ news" • Web site service (http://www.nao.ac.jp/) (about 10^7 hits a year) • Open campus or visitor service to the public • Regular star party using a modern 50-cm reflector twice a month • Coordination and cooperation with other astronomical facilities. Such as Public Astronomical Observatory Network (PAONET), Star Week Program

  13. The Organization and Management of the Virtual Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Berriman, G. Bruce; Hanisch, Robert J.; Lazio, T. Joseph W.; Szalay, Alexander; Fabbiano, Giussepina

    2012-01-01

    The U.S. Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO; http://www.us-vao.org/) has been in operation since May 2010. Its goal is to enable new science through efficient integration of distributed multi-wavelength data. This paper describes the management and organization of the VAO, and emphasizes the techniques used to ensure efficiency in a distributed organization. Management methods include using an annual program plan as the basis for establishing contracts with member organizations, regular communication, and monitoring of processes.

  14. The Organization and Management of the Virtual Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Berriman, G. Bruce; Hanisch, Robert J.; Lazio, T. Joseph W.; Szalay, Alexander; Fabbiano, Giussepina

    2012-01-01

    The U.S. Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO; http://www.us-vao.org/) has been in operation since May 2010. Its goal is to enable new science through efficient integration of distributed multi-wavelength data. This paper describes the management and organization of the VAO, and emphasizes the techniques used to ensure efficiency in a distributed organization. Management methods include using an annual program plan as the basis for establishing contracts with member organizations, regular communication, and monitoring of processes.

  15. Science Initiatives of the US Virtual Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanisch, R. J.

    2012-09-01

    The United States Virtual Astronomical Observatory program is the operational facility successor to the National Virtual Observatory development project. The primary goal of the US VAO is to build on the standards, protocols, and associated infrastructure developed by NVO and the International Virtual Observatory Alliance partners and to bring to fruition a suite of applications and web-based tools that greatly enhance the research productivity of professional astronomers. To this end, and guided by the advice of our Science Council (Fabbiano et al. 2011), we have focused on five science initiatives in the first two years of VAO operations: 1) scalable cross-comparisons between astronomical source catalogs, 2) dynamic spectral energy distribution construction, visualization, and model fitting, 3) integration and periodogram analysis of time series data from the Harvard Time Series Center and NASA Star and Exoplanet Database, 4) integration of VO data discovery and access tools into the IRAF data analysis environment, and 5) a web-based portal to VO data discovery, access, and display tools. We are also developing tools for data linking and semantic discovery, and have a plan for providing data mining and advanced statistical analysis resources for VAO users. Initial versions of these applications and web-based services are being released over the course of the summer and fall of 2011, with further updates and enhancements planned for throughout 2012 and beyond.

  16. Science Initiatives of the us Virtual Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanisch, Robert J.

    The United States Virtual Astronomical Observatory program is the operational facility successor to the National Virtual Observatory development project. The primary goal of the US VAO is to build on the standards, protocols, and associated infrastructure developed by NVO and the International Virtual Observatory Alliance partners and to bring to fruition a suite of applications and web-based tools that greatly enhance the research productivity of professional astronomers. To this end, and guided by the advice of our Science Council (advisory committee), we are focusing on five science initiatives in the first two years of VAO operations: (1) scalable cross-comparisons between astronomical source catalogs, (2) dynamic spectral energy distribution construction, visualization, and model fitting, (3) integration and periodogram analysis of time series data from the Harvard Time Series Center and NASA Star and Exoplanet Database, (4) integration of VO data discovery and access tools into the IR AF data analysis environment, and (5) a web-based portal to VO data discovery, access, and display tools. We are also developing tools for data linking and semantic discovery, and have a plan for providing data mining and advanced statistical analysis resources for VAO users. Initial versions of these applications and web-based services are being released over the course of the summer and fall of 2011, with further updates and enhancements planned for throughout 2012 and beyond.

  17. The Research Tools of the Virtual Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanisch, Robert J.; Berriman, G. B.; Lazio, T. J.; Project, VAO

    2013-01-01

    Astronomy is being transformed by the vast quantities of data, models, and simulations that are becoming available to astronomers at an ever-accelerating rate. The U.S. Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO) has been funded to provide an operational facility that is intended to be a resource for discovery and access of data, and to provide science services that use these data. Over the course of the past year, the VAO has been developing and releasing for community use five science tools: 1) "Iris", for dynamically building and analyzing spectral energy distributions, 2) a web-based data discovery tool that allows astronomers to identify and retrieve catalog, image, and spectral data on sources of interest, 3) a scalable cross-comparison service that allows astronomers to conduct pair-wise positional matches between very large catalogs stored remotely as well as between remote and local catalogs, 4) time series tools that allow astronomers to compute periodograms of the public data held at the NASA Star and Exoplanet Database (NStED) and the Harvard Time Series Center, and 5) A VO-aware release of the Image Reduction and Analysis Facility (IRAF) that provides transparent access to VO-available data collections and is SAMP-enabled, so that IRAF users can easily use tools such as Aladin and Topcat in conjuction with IRAF tasks. Additional VAO services will be built to make it easy for researchers to provide access to their data in VO-compliant ways, to build VO-enabled custom applications in Python, and to respond generally to the growing size and complexity of astronomy data. Acknowledgements: The Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO) is managed by the VAO, LLC, a non-profit company established as a partnership of the Associated Universities, Inc. and the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc. The VAO is sponsored by the National Science Foundation and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

  18. Digitizer of astronomical plates at Shanghai Astronomical Observatory and its performance test

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Yong; Zhao, Jian-Hai; Tang, Zheng-Hong; Shang, Zheng-Jun

    2017-02-01

    Before CCD detectors were widely employed in observational astronomy, the main method of detection was the use of glass astrophotographic plates. Astronomical plates have been used to record information on the position and activity of celestial bodies for more than 100 years. There are about 30 000 astronomical plates in China, and the digitization of astronomical plates is of great significance for permanent preservation and to make full use of these valuable observation data. A digitizer with high precision and high measuring speed is a key piece of equipment for carrying out the task of digitizing these astronomical plates. A digitizer for glass astrophotographic plates was developed jointly by Shanghai Astronomical Observatory and Nishimura Co., Ltd of Japan. The digitizer’s hardware was manufactured by Nishimura Co., Ltd, and the performance test, error corrections as well as image processing of the digitizer were carried out by Shanghai Astronomical Observatory. The main structure and working mode of the digitizer are introduced in this paper. A performance test shows that brightness uniformity of illumination within the measuring area is better than 0.15%, the repeatability of digitized positions is better than 0.2 µm and the repeatability of digitized brightness is better than 0.01 instrumental magnitude. The systematic factors affecting digitized positions, such as lens distortion, the actual optical resolution, non-linearity of guide rails, non-uniformity of linear motors in the mobile platform, deviation of the image mosaic, and non-orthogonality between the direction of scanning and camera linear array, are calibrated and evaluated. Based on an astronomical plate with a size of 300mm × 300mm, which was digitized at different angles, the conversion residuals of positions of common stars on different images were investigated. The results show that the standard deviations of the residuals are better than 0.9 µm and the residual distribution is almost

  19. Data Sharing and Publishing Using the Virtual Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plante, Raymond; Mishin, D. Y.; LAZIO, J.; Muench, A. A.; Project, VAO

    2013-01-01

    The astronomical research community is now use to accessing data through the web. In particular, we have ready access to large surveys as well as to observations from the major observatories. The latter data is typically available in their raw form and often also as "level 1" products that have undergone basic, standard processing. There exists, however, a vast set of data that is described in the current literature but which is largely unavailable on-line: highly processed data products from which we extract the science results we publish. We refer to this as the "long-tail of astronomical data". Typically, these products are the result of tuned or specialized processing by small teams of scientists. As part of the US Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO, usvao.org) project's effort to connect scientists with astronomical data of all types in a network-based research environment, we have taken up a multi-year initiative to capture that missing data and make it available to the community, thereby enabling new "archival" research. We describe a pilot program, in conjunction with community partners, to provide a platform for individual scientists and small research teams to make their data available through the Virtual Observatory (VO). At the core of the effort is a network-based storage space that provides a place for teams to assemble their collections and prepare them for release into the VO. Upon their release, the data collections will be connected to standard VO services that make the data accessible to the myriad VO discovery, analysis, and visualization tools. Once demonstrated in this pilot phase, we plan to assemble a more integrated repository toolkit that allows scientists to take full control of the publishing process and allow other institutions to host repositories. In particular, we are collaborating with the DataVerse project to create a repository platform that is fully connected to the VO web.

  20. The Astronomical Virtual Observatory: Lessons Learned, Looking Forward

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Genova, F.

    2012-09-01

    The astronomical Virtual Observatory (VO) aims at providing seamless access to the wealth of the discipline's on-line resources, hence at developing global interoperability between them. This is coordinated by the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA). The paper summarizes the VO history and current evolution. During the first period of VO development, a huge amount of work has been devoted to the development of basic interoperability standards, to set up the VO framework for publication of data and for tools interoperability. This has proven to be a major asset for seamless usage of data. Now the VO is in operation, and the emphasis on supporting the take-up by astronomers and data providers, as well as on outreach, is increasing. A census of European astronomical data centres performed in 2009/2010 shows a large interest in the VO, and a wide diversity of sizes and organisations, in the data centre community. The different strands of work of an operational VO, and the challenges ahead are described, taking in particular the example of the European VO. The European implementation of the VO has been moulded by the specific organisation of European astronomy, with complementary roles of the national and European levels. Local and national projects contribute to the VO development and implementation in their domains of interest and expertise. Several projects supported by the European Commission have helped to shape Euro-VO, with a strong emphasis on coordination of national and intergovernmental agency projects, with actions towards astronomers, data centres and VO developers, including during the last period of outreach towards education and the public. The Astronet Infrastructure Roadmap for European astronomy (2009) has recognized data and the VO as one of the infrastructures of astronomy. The way forward in this context is discussed. In conclusion, the astronomical data infrastructure is put in perspective with the general trends around scientific

  1. Education and Outreach with the Virtual Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lawton, Brandon L.; Eisenhamer, B.; Raddick, M. J.; Mattson, B. J.; Harris, J.

    2012-01-01

    The Virtual Observatory (VO) is an international effort to bring a large-scale electronic integration of astronomy data, tools, and services to the global community. The Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO) is the U.S. NSF- and NASA-funded VO effort that seeks to put efficient astronomical tools in the hands of U.S. astronomers, students, educators, and public outreach leaders. These tools will make use of data collected by the multitude of ground- and space-based missions over the previous decades. Many future missions will also be incorporated into the VAO tools when they launch. The Education and Public Outreach (E/PO) program for the VAO is led by the Space Telescope Science Institute in collaboration with the HEASARC E/PO program and Johns Hopkins University. VAO E/PO efforts seek to bring technology, real-world astronomical data, and the story of the development and infrastructure of the VAO to the general public, formal education, and informal education communities. Our E/PO efforts will be structured to provide uniform access to VAO information, enabling educational opportunities across multiple wavelengths and time-series data sets. The VAO team recognizes that many VO programs have built powerful tools for E/PO purposes, such as Microsoft's World Wide Telescope, SDSS Sky Server, Aladin, and a multitude of citizen-science tools available from Zooniverse. We are building partnerships with Microsoft, Zooniverse, and NASA's Night Sky Network to leverage the communities and tools that already exist to meet the needs of our audiences. Our formal education program is standards-based and aims to give teachers the tools to use real astronomical data to teach the STEM subjects. To determine which tools the VAO will incorporate into the formal education program, needs assessments will be conducted with educators across the U.S.

  2. Astronomical Research with the MicroObservatory Net

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brecher, K.; Sadler, P.; Gould, R.; Leiker, S.; Antonucci, P.; Deutsch, F.

    1997-05-01

    We have developed a fully integrated automated astronomical telescope system which combines the imaging power of a cooled CCD, with a self-contained and weatherized 15 cm reflecting optical telescope and mount. The MicroObservatory Net consists of five of these telescopes. They are currently being deployed around the world at widely distributed longitudes. Remote access to the MicroObservatories over the Internet has now been implemented. Software for computer control, pointing, focusing, filter selection as well as pattern recognition have all been developed as part of the project. The telescopes can be controlled in real time or in delay mode, from a Macintosh, PC or other computer using Web-based software. The Internet address of the telescopes is http://cfa- www.harvard.edu/cfa/sed/MicroObservatory/MicroObservatory.html. In the real-time mode, individuals have access to all of the telescope control functions without the need for an `on-site' operator. Users can sign up for a specific period of ti me. In the batch mode, users can submit requests for delayed telescope observations. After a MicroObservatory completes a job, the user is automatically notified by e-mail that the image is available for viewing and downloading from the Web site. The telescopes were designed for classroom instruction, as well as for use by students and amateur astronomers for original scientific research projects. We are currently examining a variety of technical and educational questions about the use of the telescopes including: (1) What are the best approaches to scheduling real-time versus batch mode observations? (2) What criteria should be used for allocating telescope time? (3) With deployment of more than one telescope, is it advantageous for each telescope to be used for just one type of observation, i.e., some for photometric use, others for imaging? And (4) What are the most valuable applications of the MicroObservatories in astronomical research? Support for the MicroObservatory

  3. New Life for Astronomical Instruments of the Past at the Astronomical Observatory of Taras Shevchenko

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kazantseva, Liliya

    2012-09-01

    Astronomical instruments of the past are certainly valuable artifacts of the history of science and education. Like other collections of scientific equipment, they also demonstrate i) development of scientific and technical ideas, ii) technological features of the historical period, iii) professional features of artists or companies -- manufacturers, and iv) national and local specificity of production. However, astronomical instruments are also devices made for observations of rare phenomena -- solar eclipses, transits of planets of the solar disk, etc. Instruments used to study these rare events were very different for each event, since the science changed quickly between events. The Astronomical Observatory of Kyiv National Taras Shevchenko University has a collection of tools made by leading European and local shops from the early nineteenth century. These include tools for optically observing the first artificial Earth satellites, photography, chronometry, and meteorology. In addition, it has assembled a library of descriptions of astronomical instruments and makers'price-lists. Of particular interest are the large stationary tools that are still active in their pavilions. Almost every instrument has a long interesting history. Museification of astronomical instruments gives them a second life, expanding educational programs and tracing the development of astronomy in general and scientific institution and region in particular. It would be advisable to first create a regional database of these rare astronomical instruments (which is already being done in Ukraine), then a common global database. By combining all the historical information about astronomical instruments with the advantages of the Internet, you can show the full evolution of an astronomical instrument with all its features. Time is relentless, and much is destroyed, badly kept and thrown in the garbage. We need time to protect, capture, and tell about it.

  4. Historical Examples of Lobbying: The Case of Strasbourg Astronomical Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heck, Andre

    2012-08-01

    Several astronomical observatories have been established in Strasbourg in very differing contexts. In the late 17th century, an observing post (scientifically sterile) was put on top of a tower, the Hospital Gate, essentially for the prestige of the city and the notoriety of the university. In the 19th century, the observatory built on the Académie hosting the French university was the first attempt to set up in the city a real observatory equipped with genuine instrumentation with the purpose of carrying out serious research, but the succession of political regimes in France and the continual bidding for moving the university to other locations, together with the faltering of later scholars, torpedoed any significant scientific usage of the place. After the 1870-1871 Franco-Prussian war, the German authorities set up a prestigious university campus with a whole range of institutes together with a modern observatory consisting of several buildings and hosting a flotilla of excellent instruments, including the then largest refractor of the country. This paper illustrates various types of lobbying used in the steps above while detailing, from archive documents largely unexploited so far, original research on the two first observatories.

  5. The Virtual Astronomical Observatory: Re-engineering access to astronomical data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanisch, R. J.; Berriman, G. B.; Lazio, T. J. W.; Emery Bunn, S.; Evans, J.; McGlynn, T. A.; Plante, R.

    2015-06-01

    The US Virtual Astronomical Observatory was a software infrastructure and development project designed both to begin the establishment of an operational Virtual Observatory (VO) and to provide the US coordination with the international VO effort. The concept of the VO is to provide the means by which an astronomer is able to discover, access, and process data seamlessly, regardless of its physical location. This paper describes the origins of the VAO, including the predecessor efforts within the US National Virtual Observatory, and summarizes its main accomplishments. These accomplishments include the development of both scripting toolkits that allow scientists to incorporate VO data directly into their reduction and analysis environments and high-level science applications for data discovery, integration, analysis, and catalog cross-comparison. Working with the international community, and based on the experience from the software development, the VAO was a major contributor to international standards within the International Virtual Observatory Alliance. The VAO also demonstrated how an operational virtual observatory could be deployed, providing a robust operational environment in which VO services worldwide were routinely checked for aliveness and compliance with international standards. Finally, the VAO engaged in community outreach, developing a comprehensive web site with on-line tutorials, announcements, links to both US and internationally developed tools and services, and exhibits and hands-on training at annual meetings of the American Astronomical Society and through summer schools and community days. All digital products of the VAO Project, including software, documentation, and tutorials, are stored in a repository for community access. The enduring legacy of the VAO is an increasing expectation that new telescopes and facilities incorporate VO capabilities during the design of their data management systems.

  6. "Route of astronomical observatories'' project: classical observatories from the Renaissance to the rise of astrophysics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolfschmidt, Gudrun

    2015-08-01

    Observatories offer a good possibility for serial transnational applications. A well-known example for a thematic programme is the Struve arc, already recognized as World Heritage.I will discuss what has been achieved and show examples, like the route of astronomical observatories or the transition from classical astronomy to modern astrophysics (La Plata, Hamburg, Nice, etc.), visible in the architecture, the choice of instruments, and the arrangement of the observatory buildings in an astronomy park. This corresponds to the main categories according to which the ``outstanding universal value'' (UNESCO criteria ii, iv and vi) of the observatories have been evaluated: historic, scientific, and aesthetic. This proposal is based on the criteria of a comparability of the observatories in terms of the urbanistic complex and the architecture, the scientific orientation, equipment of instruments, authenticity and integrity of the preserved state, as well as in terms of historic scientific relations and scientific contributions.Apart from these serial transnational applications one can also choose other groups like baroque or neo-classical observatories, solar physics observatories or a group of observatories equipped with the same kind of instruments and made by the same famous firm. I will also discuss why the implementation of the Astronomy and World Heritage Initiative is difficult and why there are problems to nominate observatories for election in the national Tentative Lists

  7. Bringing the Virtual Astronomical Observatory to the Education Community

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lawton, B.; Eisenhamer, B.; Mattson, B. J.; Raddick, M. J.

    2012-08-01

    The Virtual Observatory (VO) is an international effort to bring a large-scale electronic integration of astronomy data, tools, and services to the global community. The Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO) is the U.S. NSF- and NASA-funded VO effort that seeks to put efficient astronomical tools in the hands of U.S. astronomers, students, educators, and public outreach leaders. These tools will make use of data collected by the multitude of ground- and space-based missions over the previous decades. The Education and Public Outreach (EPO) program for the VAO will be led by the Space Telescope Science Institute in collaboration with the High Energy Astrophysics Science Archive Research Center (HEASARC) EPO program and Johns Hopkins University. VAO EPO efforts seek to bring technology, real-world astronomical data, and the story of the development and infrastructure of the VAO to the general public and education community. Our EPO efforts will be structured to provide uniform access to VAO information, enabling educational and research opportunities across multiple wavelengths and time-series data sets. The VAO team recognizes that the VO has already built many tools for EPO purposes, such as Microsoft's World Wide Telescope, SDSS Sky Server, Aladin, and a multitude of citizen-science tools available from Zooniverse. However, it is not enough to simply provide tools. Tools must meet the needs of the education community and address national education standards in order to be broadly utilized. To determine which tools the VAO will incorporate into the EPO program, needs assessments will be conducted with educators across the U.S.

  8. Running a distributed virtual observatory: U.S. Virtual Astronomical Observatory operations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McGlynn, Thomas A.; Hanisch, Robert J.; Berriman, G. Bruce; Thakar, Aniruddha R.

    2012-09-01

    Operation of the US Virtual Astronomical Observatory shares some issues with modern physical observatories, e.g., intimidating data volumes and rapid technological change, and must also address unique concerns like the lack of direct control of the underlying and scattered data resources, and the distributed nature of the observatory itself. In this paper we discuss how the VAO has addressed these challenges to provide the astronomical community with a coherent set of science-enabling tools and services. The distributed nature of our virtual observatory-with data and personnel spanning geographic, institutional and regime boundaries-is simultaneously a major operational headache and the primary science motivation for the VAO. Most astronomy today uses data from many resources. Facilitation of matching heterogeneous datasets is a fundamental reason for the virtual observatory. Key aspects of our approach include continuous monitoring and validation of VAO and VO services and the datasets provided by the community, monitoring of user requests to optimize access, caching for large datasets, and providing distributed storage services that allow user to collect results near large data repositories. Some elements are now fully implemented, while others are planned for subsequent years. The distributed nature of the VAO requires careful attention to what can be a straightforward operation at a conventional observatory, e.g., the organization of the web site or the collection and combined analysis of logs. Many of these strategies use and extend protocols developed by the international virtual observatory community. Our long-term challenge is working with the underlying data providers to ensure high quality implementation of VO data access protocols (new and better 'telescopes'), assisting astronomical developers to build robust integrating tools (new 'instruments'), and coordinating with the research community to maximize the science enabled.

  9. Astronomical Learning Centers from the Lake Afton Public Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kardel, W. S.

    1994-12-01

    The Lake Afton Public Observatory was founded 14 years ago as a joint project of the city, county, local schools, and Wichita State University to provide educational programs for the public and school children. During the 1993-1994 school year over 31,000 students were served by Observatory school and school outreach programs. The Observatory's Learning Centers are a vital part of its school outreach program. Students receive a presentation from an astronomer and make use of the materials and activities in the Learning Center. Each package is designed to lead students into discovering things for themselves. Learning centers are left with the students for up to two weeks. Four Learning Centers are currently in use, with an additional one under development. Current Learning Centers let students explore the solar system, examine meteorites, build a simple telescope, and discover the properties of light, lenses and color. In the 1993-94 nearly 3,000 students used a Learning Center from Lake Afton Public Observatory. This work is supported in part by NSF grant OSR-9255223.

  10. Project of space research and technology center in Engelhardt astronomical observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nefedyev, Y.; Gusev, A.; Sherstukov, O.; Kascheev, R.; Zagretdinov, R.

    2012-09-01

    Today on the basis of Engelhardt astronomical observatory (EAO) is created Space research and technology center as consistent with Program for expansion of the Kazan University. The Centre has the following missions: • EDUCATION • SCIENCE • ASTRONOMICAL TOURISM

  11. Virtual Astronomy: The Legacy of the Virtual Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanisch, Robert J.; Berriman, G. B.; Lazio, J.; Szalay, A. S.; Fabbiano, G.; Plante, R. L.; McGlynn, T. A.; Evans, J.; Emery Bunn, S.; Claro, M.; VAO Project Team

    2014-01-01

    Over the past ten years, the Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO, http://usvao.org) and its predecessor, the National Virtual Observatory (NVO), have developed and operated a software infrastructure consisting of standards and protocols for data and science software applications. The Virtual Observatory (VO) makes it possible to develop robust software for the discovery, access, and analysis of astronomical data. Every major publicly funded research organization in the US and worldwide has deployed at least some components of the VO infrastructure; tens of thousands of VO-enabled queries for data are invoked daily against catalog, image, and spectral data collections; and groups within the community have developed tools and applications building upon the VO infrastructure. Further, NVO and VAO have helped ensure access to data internationally by co-founding the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA, http://ivoa.net). The products of the VAO are being archived in a publicly accessible repository. Several science tools developed by the VAO will continue to be supported by the organizations that developed them: the Iris spectral energy distribution package (SAO), the Data Discovery Tool (STScI/MAST, HEASARC), and the scalable cross-comparison service (IPAC). The final year of VAO is focused on development of the data access protocol for data cubes, creation of Python language bindings to VO services, and deployment of a cloud-like data storage service that links to VO data discovery tools (SciDrive). We encourage the community to make use of these tools and services, to extend and improve them, and to carry on with the vision for virtual astronomy: astronomical research enabled by easy access to distributed data and computational resources. Funding for VAO development and operations has been provided jointly by NSF and NASA since May 2010. NSF funding will end in September 2014, though with the possibility of competitive solicitations for VO-based tool

  12. Managing distributed software development in the Virtual Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Evans, Janet D.; Plante, Raymond L.; Boneventura, Nina; Busko, Ivo; Cresitello-Dittmar, Mark; D'Abrusco, Raffaele; Doe, Stephen; Ebert, Rick; Laurino, Omar; Pevunova, Olga; Refsdal, Brian; Thomas, Brian

    2012-09-01

    The U.S. Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO) is a product-driven organization that provides new scientific research capabilities to the astronomical community. Software development for the VAO follows a lightweight framework that guides development of science applications and infrastructure. Challenges to be overcome include distributed development teams, part-time efforts, and highly constrained schedules. We describe the process we followed to conquer these challenges while developing Iris, the VAO application for analysis of 1-D astronomical spectral energy distributions (SEDs). Iris was successfully built and released in less than a year with a team distributed across four institutions. The project followed existing International Virtual Observatory Alliance inter-operability standards for spectral data and contributed a SED library as a by-product of the project. We emphasize lessons learned that will be folded into future development efforts. In our experience, a well-defined process that provides guidelines to ensure the project is cohesive and stays on track is key to success. Internal product deliveries with a planned test and feedback loop are critical. Release candidates are measured against use cases established early in the process, and provide the opportunity to assess priorities and make course corrections during development. Also key is the participation of a stakeholder such as a lead scientist who manages the technical questions, advises on priorities, and is actively involved as a lead tester. Finally, frequent scheduled communications (for example a bi-weekly tele-conference) assure issues are resolved quickly and the team is working toward a common vision.

  13. MSE observatory: a revised and optimized astronomical facility

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bauman, Steven E.; Angers, Mathieu; Benedict, Tom; Crampton, David; Flagey, Nicolas; Gedig, Mike; Green, Greg; Liu, Andy; Lo, David; Loewen, Nathan; McConnachie, Alan; Murowinski, Rick; Racine, René; Salmon, Derrick; Stiemer, Siegfried; Szeto, Kei; Wu, Di

    2016-07-01

    The Canada-France-Hawaii-Telescope Corporation (CFHT) plans to repurpose its observatory on the summit of Maunakea and operate a (60 segment) 11.25m aperture wide field spectroscopic survey telescope, the Maunakea Spectroscopic Explorer (MSE). The prime focus telescope will be equipped with dedicated instrumentation to take advantage of one of the best sites in the northern hemisphere and offer its users the ability to perform large surveys. Central themes of the development plan are reusing and upgrading wherever possible. MSE will reuse the CFHT site and build upon the existing observatory infrastructure, using the same building and telescope pier as CFHT, while minimizing environmental impact on the summit. MSE will require structural support upgrades to the building to meet the latest building seismic code requirements and accommodate a new larger telescope and upgraded enclosure. It will be necessary to replace the current dome since a larger slit opening is needed for a larger telescope. MSE will use a thermal management system to remove heat generated by loads from the building, flush excess heat from lower levels, and maintain the observing environment temperature. This paper describes the design approach for redeveloping the CFHT facility for MSE. Once the project is completed the new facility will be almost indistinguishable on the outside from the current CFHT observatory. Past experience and lessons learned from CFHT staff and the astronomical community will be used to create a modern, optimized, and transformative scientific data collecting machine.

  14. Ultraviolet photometry from the Orbiting Astronomical Observatory. II Interstellar extinction.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bless, R. C.; Savage, B. D.

    1972-01-01

    Evaluation of interstellar extinction curves over the region from 3600 to 1100 A for 17 stars. The observations were made by the two Wisconsin spectrometers on board the Orbiting Astronomical Observatory 2, with spectral resolutions of 10 and 20 A. The extinction curves generally show a pronounced maximum at 2175 plus or minus 25 A, a broad minimum in the region from 1800 to 1350 A, and finally a rapid rise to the far-ultraviolet. Large extinction variations from star to star are found, especially in the far-ultraviolet; however, with only two possible exceptions in this sample, the wavelength at the maximum of the extinction bump is essentially constant. These data are combined with visual and infrared observations to display the extinction behavior over a range in wavelength of about a factor of 20. The observations appear to require a multicomponent model of the interstellar dust.

  15. Ultraviolet photometry from the Orbiting Astronomical Observatory. II Interstellar extinction.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bless, R. C.; Savage, B. D.

    1972-01-01

    Evaluation of interstellar extinction curves over the region from 3600 to 1100 A for 17 stars. The observations were made by the two Wisconsin spectrometers on board the Orbiting Astronomical Observatory 2, with spectral resolutions of 10 and 20 A. The extinction curves generally show a pronounced maximum at 2175 plus or minus 25 A, a broad minimum in the region from 1800 to 1350 A, and finally a rapid rise to the far-ultraviolet. Large extinction variations from star to star are found, especially in the far-ultraviolet; however, with only two possible exceptions in this sample, the wavelength at the maximum of the extinction bump is essentially constant. These data are combined with visual and infrared observations to display the extinction behavior over a range in wavelength of about a factor of 20. The observations appear to require a multicomponent model of the interstellar dust.

  16. Twenty five years National Astronomical Observatory: Publications and dissertations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iliev, Ilian

    The idea to estimate the merits and to measure the impact of the National Astronomical Observatory of Bulgaria by creating the list with all publications and dissertations based fully or in part on the data collected during last 25 years with its telescopes is presented. The process of compiling the list is described. Its last version contains complete bibliographical data about more than 1000 publications with total volume of about 5500 journal pages. All of them are printed out in 1980--2005. The accumulated impact-factor exceeds 1000, the number of citations is expected to be between 3000 and 5000. The number of successful dissertations is close to 40, while the bachelor and master theses are near 100.

  17. Atlas-Centaur Orbiting Astronomical Observatory Shroud Test

    NASA Image and Video Library

    1968-04-21

    Researchers at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Lewis Research Center conducted a series of shroud jettison tests for the second Orbiting Astronomical Observatory (OAO-2) in the Space Power Chambers during April 1968. The Orbiting Astronomical Observatory satellites were designed by Goddard Space Flight Center to study and retrieve ultraviolet data on stars and galaxies which earthbound and atmospheric telescopes could not view due to ozone absorption. The shroud jettison system was tested in the Space Power Chambers. In 1961, NASA Lewis management decided to convert its Altitude Wind Tunnel into two large test chambers and later renamed it the Space Power Chambers. The conversion, which took over two years, included removing the tunnel’s internal components and inserting bulkheads to seal off the new chambers. The larger chamber, seen here, could simulate altitudes of 100,000 feet. These chambers were used for a variety of tests on the Centaur second-stage rocket until the early 1970s. The first OAO mission in 1965 failed due to problems with the satellite. OAO-2 would be launched on an Atlas/Centaur with a modified Agena shroud. The new shroud was 18 feet longer than the normal Centaur payload shrouds. This new piece of hardware was successfully qualified during three tests at 90,000 feet altitude in the Space Power Chambers in April 1968. For the first time, x-rays were used to verify the payload clearance once the shroud was sealed. OAO-2 was launched on December 7, 1968 and proved to be an extremely successful mission.

  18. Japanese Virtual Observatory (JVO) as an advanced astronomical research environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shirasaki, Yuji; Tanaka, Masahiro; Kawanomoto, Satoshi; Honda, Satoshi; Ohishi, Masatoshi; Mizumoto, Yoshihiko; Yasuda, Naoki; Masunaga, Yoshifumi; Ishihara, Yasuhide; Tsutsumi, Jumpei; Nakamoto, Hiroyuki; Kobayashi, Yuusuke; Sakamoto, Michito

    2006-06-01

    We present the design and implementation of the Japanese Virtual Observatory (JVO) system. JVO is a portal site to various kinds of astronomical resources distributed all over the world. We have developed five components for constructing the portal: (1) registry, (2) data service, (3) workflow system, (4) data analysis service (5) portal GUI. Registry services are used for publishing and searching data services in the VO, and they are constructed using an OAI-PMH metadata harvesting protocol and a SOAP web service protocol so that VO standard architecture is applied. Data services are developed based on the Astronomical Data Query Language (ADQL) which is an international VO standard and an extension of the standard SQL. The toolkit for building the ADQL-based service is released to the public on the JVO web site. The toolkit also provides the protocol translation from a Simple Image Access Protocol (SIAP) to ADQL protocol, so that both the VO standard service can be constructed using our toolkit. In order to federate the distributed databases and analysis services, we have designed a workflow language which is described in XML and developed execution system of the workflow. We have succeeded to connect to a hundred of data resources of the world as of April 2006. We have applied this system to the study of QSO environment by federating a QSO database, a Subaru Suprim-Cam database, and some analysis services such a SExtractor and HyperZ web services. These experiences are described is this paper.

  19. The Russian Virtual Observatory. Information System of the Centre for Astronomical Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dluzhnevskaya, O.; Malkov, O.; Kovaleva, D.; Kilpio, E.; Kilpio, A.; Sat, L.

    The ultimate goal of the Russian Virtual Observatory (RVO) initiative is to provide every astronomer with on-line access to the rich volumes of data and metadata that have been and will continue to be produced by astronomical survey projects. RVO will be merged naturally into the International Astronomical Observatory. The information system of the RVO has a main goal of integrating resources of astronomical data accumulated in Russian observatories and institutions, and providing transparent access for scientific and educational purposes to the distributed information and data services that comprise its content. One of the general purpose data centres for astronomy world-wide is the Centre for Astronomical Data (CAD). CAD has been sistematically collecting and distributing astronomical data for more than 20 years. Some hundreds of catalogs and journal tables are currently available from the CAD repository. The CAD staff will carry out the activities on construction of the information system of the Russian Virtual Observatory.

  20. The Digitation of the Astronomical Plates of Catania Astrophysical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Massimino, P.; Catalano, S.; Cigna, M.; Greco, V., Mangano, A.; Marilli, E.; Blanco, C.

    2006-07-01

    To make easily available the great amount of highly valuable information stored in the photographic archives of many Italian Observatories and of the Specola Vaticana, a large-scale National Project to digitize the plates was financially supported by the Italian Ministry of Education (MIUR) (Barbieri et al. 2003, 2004). The contribution of the Catania Astrophysical Observatory and of the Physics and Astronomy Department of Catania University to the Project is to digitize the image plates of the "Carte du Ciel" and of the Astrographic Catalogue obtained from 1896 to 1907. Moreover plates of the 1910 passage of Halley's comet and other plates obtained during the XX Century (Massimino et al. 2004) have been digitized. A set of identical systems, composed of a commercial flat-bed-retro-illuminated scanner, a dedicated personal computer and an acquisition software, has been installed in the Institutes involved in the Project. The main characteristics of Astroplates, a software program developed in Catania, that uses the IDL libraries to manage the astronomical images acquired with the scanner from photographic plates are presented.

  1. The Story of the Telescope Made in 1875 called the Oldest in National Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakagiri, Masao

    2008-09-01

    A meridian instrument made by Troughton&Simms in 1875 is exhihited to the history building as the National Astronomical Observatory oldest telescope. The author came to be concerned with old observation instruments of National Astronomical Observatory, and he excavated observation devices left in National Astronomical Observatory and was able to go ahead through reconstruction. And he thought this telescope whether it was the part of the astronomical theodolite not a meridian instrument. There is no doubt as to whether it is the oldest in the Observatory, and the author began inspection. As for him, the telescope called a meridian instrument made in this 1875 came to have the conviction that was transferred from the Department of the Interior geography station of the Meiji government to Tokyo Astronomical Observatory.

  2. The caracol tower at chichen itza: an ancient astronomical observatory?

    PubMed

    Aveni, A F; Gibbs, S L; Hartung, H

    1975-06-06

    the front of the structure. It may be astronomically significant that the Yucatecan towers fronted in approximately the same direction. Andrews (34) reports the existence of a curious circular building located at Puerto Rico, Campeche, near Xpujil. His crosssectional view of the tower bears a close resemblance to Ruppert's sketch (6, figure 293) of a horizontal section taken through the windows remaining at the top of the Caracol. Hartung (12) has suggested a possible astronomical use for the Puerto Rico tower, but no analysis of the orientation of its "windows," which are much smaller than those of the Caracol, has yet been conducted. Other circular buildings are reported at Ake (20, p. 113) and Isla Cozumel (35, p. 557). We hope that future investigations of the remains of Yucatecan towers will shed further light upon the significance and use of the Caracol as an astronomical observatory.

  3. Orbiting Astronomical Observatory-1 Shroud Test in Space Power Chambers

    NASA Image and Video Library

    1965-07-21

    Preparations for a shroud jettison test for the Orbiting Astronomical Observatory-1 (OAO-1) satellite in the Space Power Chambers facility at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Lewis Research Center. The satellite was to be launched on an Atlas-Agena rocket in the spring of 1966. The 3900-pound payload was the heaviest ever attempted by Agena. The satellite was the first of three equipped with powerful telescopes to study ultraviolet data from specific stars and galaxies. In-depth observations were not possible from Earth-bound telescopes because of the filtering and distortion of the atmosphere. The OAO-1 satellite was wider in diameter than the Agena stage, so a new clamshell shroud was created to enclose both the satellite and the Agena. The clamshell shroud consisted of three sections that enclosed both the Agena and OAO-1: a fiberglass nose fairing and aluminum mid and aft fairings. The upper two fairings separated when the Atlas engines stopped, and the aft fairing fell away with the Atlas upon separation from the upper stages The large altitude tank in the Space Power Chambers could simulate altitudes up to 100,000 feet. Three shroud jettison tests were run in July 1965 and the first week of August at a simulated altitude of 20 miles. The April 8, 1966 launch from Cape Canaveral went smoothly, but the OAO-1 satellite failed after only 90 minutes due to a battery failure.

  4. Current and Future Capabilities of the 74-inch Telescope of Kottamia Astronomical Observatory in Egypt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Azzam, Y. A.; Ali, G. B.; Ismail, H. A.; Haroon, A.; Selim, I.

    In this paper, we are going to introduce the Kottamia Astronomical Observatory, KAO, to the astronomical community. The current status of the telescope together with the available instrumentations is described. An upgrade stage including a new optical system and a computer controlling of both the telescope and dome are achieved. The specifications of a set of CCD cameras for direct imaging and spectroscopy are given. A grating spectrograph is recently gifted to KAO from Okayama Astrophysical Observatory, OAO, of the National Astronomical Observatories in Japan. This spectrograph is successfully tested and installed at the F/18 Cassegrain focus of the KAO 74" telescope.

  5. Celescope catalog of ultraviolet stellar observations. Magnetic tape version. [Orbiting Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Davis, R. J.; Deutschman, W. A.; Haramundanis, K. L.

    1973-01-01

    Observational results obtained by the celescope experiment during the first 16 months of operation of NASA's Orbiting Astronomical Observatory are presented. Results of the stellar observations are listed along with selected ground-based information obtained from the available literature.

  6. Lightcurves for 366 Vincentina, 592 Bathseba, and 1544 Yugoslavia from Belgrade Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Benishek, Vladimir

    2013-04-01

    Lightcurves for the asteroids 366 Vincentina, 592 Bathseba, and 1554 Yugoslavia were obtained from 2012 May to October at the Belgrade Astronomical Observatory using differential aperture photometry. The results found for the synodic periods and amplitudes are reported.

  7. The R. M. Aller Astronomical Observatory Research on Double and Multiple Stars: Highlights and Projects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Docobo, J.-A.

    2012-12-01

    In this talk, I will speak about some relevant results that we have obtained in the Ramon Maria Aller Astronomical Observatory (OARMA) concerning binaries. More concretely, I will discuss our current research project and highlights of our work.

  8. Nikolaev (Mykolayiv) Astronomical Observatory as the Object of the Ukrainian Tentative List WH UNESCO

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pinigin, Gennadiy; Pozhalova, Zhanna

    2012-09-01

    Nikolaev Astronomical Observatory (NAO), one of the oldest scientific institutions of the South-Eastern Europe, was founded as a naval observatory in 1821 for providing the needs of the Russian Black Sea Navy. It is a historical and astronomical complex with a reserved territory of total area 7.1 hectares, situated in the central part of Mykolaiv city, Ukraine. The beginning of scientific research at the Observatory is connected with the activity of Karl Knorre, its first director. From 1912 up to 1991, NAO was one of the Southern departments of Pulkovo Observatory with the main purpose to spread the system of absolute catalogs to the Southern hemisphere and to carry out regular observations of the Solar system bodies. Since 1992 NAO has become an independent leading institution of Ukraine in the field of positional astronomy, dynamics of Solar system bodies, research of near-Earth space, astronomical instrumentation. In 2007, it was inscribed in the Tentative UNESCO List of WH (#5116). The most significant part of the complex is the Main building, which was built in the style of Classicism in 1821--1829 (the monument of architecture #535 in the state registry). Also, the astronomical pavilions (1875, 1913, 1955, etc.) and instruments were preserved. Among them three Repsold instruments: meridian circle (1834), portable circle (1868) and vertical circle (1897). The unique astronomical and navigational devices, the collection of astronomical clocks are present in the observatory museum and the paper archive since the foundation of observatory is preserved.

  9. Architectures of astronomical observation: From Sternwarte Kassel (circa 1560) to the Radcliffe Observatory (1772)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kwan, Alistair Marcus

    Historical observatories did not merely shelter astronomers and their instruments, but interacted with them to shape the range and outcome of astronomical observations. This claim is demonstrated through both improvised and purpose-built observatories from the late sixteenth century to the late eighteenth. The improvised observatories involve various grades of architectural intervention from simple re-purposing of a generic space through to radical renovation and customisation. Some of the observatories examined were never built, and some survive only in textual and visual representations, but all nonetheless reflect astronomers' thinking about what observatories needed to provide, and allow us to reconstruct aspects of what it was like to work in them. Historical observatories hence offer a physical record of observational practices. Reconstructing lost practices and the tacit knowledge involved shows how observatories actively contributed to observations by accommodating, supporting and sheltering observers and instruments. We also see how observatories compromised observations by constraining views and free movement, by failing to provide sufficient support, by being expensive or otherwise difficult to obtain, modify or replace. Some observatories were modified many times, accumulating layers of renovation and addition that reflect both advancement and succession of multiple research programs. Such observatories materially and spatially manifest how observational astronomy developed and also also how observatories, like other buildings, respond to changing needs. Examining observatories for their architectural functions and functional shortcomings connects observational practices, spatial configurations and astronomical instrumentation. Such examination shows that spatial contexts, and hence the buildings that define them, are not passive: to the contrary, observatories are active protagonists in the development and practise of observational astronomy.

  10. Historical survey of the national astronomical observatory in Llano del Hato

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martinez Picar, Antonio; Salas Ramirez, Henry

    2007-12-01

    The Centro de Investigaciones de Astronomia (CIDA), the Venezuelan Institute in charge for managing human- and technical resources of the National Astronomical Observatory in Llano del Hato, is one of the younger institutes in its field. However, its foundation is surrounded by a series of curious and interesting eyents that go back to the end of the 18th century. Its equatoriallocation, excellent astronomical equipment and the high-qualified personnel offers a geographical and technical advantage. The paper is a historical oveniew of events, facts and demonstrations of the human activity related to the conception, building and starting the Llano del Hato National Astronomical Observatory.

  11. Astronomical Data Query Language: Simple Query Protocol for the Virtual Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yasuda, N.; Mizumoto, Y.; Ohishi, M.; O'Mullane, W.; Budavári, T.; Haridas, V.; Li, N.; Malik, T.; Szalay, A. S.; Hill, M.; Linde, T.; Mann, B.; Page, C. G.

    2004-07-01

    The Astronomical Data Query Language (ADQL) is a proposed standard query language for the interoperability of the International Virtual Observatory. The data servers in the International Virtual Observatory could be searched using an ADQL query. The servers would return VOTables as a result of the query.

  12. Photographic Plate Archive of Astronomical Observatory of Ivan Franko National University of Lviv

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Virun, N.; Pakuliak, L.; Kazantseva, L.

    2012-05-01

    The project of Ukrainian Virtual Observatory is based on the digitization of photographic plate archives, collected during more than 100 years, which together with CCD archieves are expected to form the Joint Digital Archive. The paper presents the description of archieves the historical photographical collections of astronomical observatories of Kyiv and Lviv national universities. The application of flatbed scanners for plate digitization is discussed.

  13. Yangbajing Astronomical Observatory of NAOC in Tibet: a good multi-wavelength site

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Jun-Jie

    2015-08-01

    Yangbajing Astronomical Station of National Astronomical Observatories, Chinese Academy of Science (NAOC) is located in Yangbajing Tibet (90°31'50" E 30°06'38" N, 4300m ). It is the first professional observatory operated by NAOC for science project in Tibet. This station was established on August 17, 2011, which means that Tibet has its first astronomical observatory. There are one 3-meter in diameter submillimeter telescope CCOSMA and five 40-50 cm optical telescopes. This could lay a solid foundation for attracting more international cooperation on large telescope projects in Tibet in future. we have already tested the radio, millimeter/submillimeter and optical environment in Yangbajing. The result shows that Yangbajing station is a good desirable multi-wavelength astronomical observation site.

  14. Solar Observations in Pope Sylvester II's Astronomical Observatory in Bukowiec

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Banyś, T. A. J.; Wieteska, Ł.; Kata, M.; Sigismondi, C.

    2014-05-01

    The activity of the Pope Sylvester II Observatory in Bukowiec (Poland)included solar observations. Among them a large pinhole solar observatory with camera obscura has been realized in the aisles of the school, 70 meters long. These results have been presented to the CAP 2013 IAU congress in Warsaw on October 15-20, 2013.

  15. Strategies for personnel sustainable lifecycle at astronomical observatories and local industry development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bendek, Eduardo A.; Leatherbee, Michael; Smith, Heather; Strappa, Valentina; Zinnecker, Hans; Perez, Mario

    2014-08-01

    Specialized manpower required to efficiently operate world-class observatories requires large investments in time and resources to train personnel in very specific areas of engineering. Isolation and distances to mayor cities pose a challenge to retain motivated and qualified personnel on the mountain. This paper presents strategies that we believe may be effective for retaining this specific know-how in the astronomy field; while at the same time develop a local support industry for observatory operations and astronomical instrumentation development. For this study we choose Chile as a research setting because it will host more than 60% of the world's ground based astronomical infrastructure by the end of the decade, and because the country has an underdeveloped industry for astronomy services. We identify the astronomical infrastructure that exists in the country as well as the major research groups and industrial players. We further identify the needs of observatories that could be outsourced to the local economy. As a result, we suggest spin-off opportunities that can be started by former observatory employees and therefore retaining the knowhow of experienced people that decide to leave on-site jobs. We also identify tools to facilitate this process such as the creation of a centralized repository of local capabilities and observatory needs, as well as exchange programs within astronomical instrumentation groups. We believe that these strategies will contribute to a positive work environment at the observatories, reduce the operation and development costs, and develop a new industry for the host country.

  16. Databases of publications and observations as a part of the Crimean Astronomical Virtual Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shlyapnikov, A.; Bondar', N.; Gorbunov, M.

    We describe the main principles of formation of databases (DBs) with information about astronomical objects and their physical characteristics derived from observations obtained at the Crimean Astrophysical Observatory (CrAO) and published in the ``Izvestiya of the CrAO'' and elsewhere. Emphasis is placed on the DBs missing from the most complete global library of catalogs and data tables, VizieR (supported by the Center of Astronomical Data, Strasbourg). We specially consider the problem of forming a digital archive of observational data obtained at the CrAO as an interactive DB related to database objects and publications. We present examples of all our DBs as elements integrated into the Crimean Astronomical Virtual Observatory. We illustrate the work with the CrAO DBs using tools of the International Virtual Observatory: Aladin, VOPlot, VOSpec, in conjunction with the VizieR and Simbad DBs.

  17. The Role in the Virtual Astronomical Observatory in the Era of Massive Data Sets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Berriman, G. Bruce; Hanisch, Robert J.; Lazio, T. Joseph W.

    2012-01-01

    The Virtual Observatory (VO) is realizing global electronic integration of astronomy data. One of the long-term goals of the U.S. VO project, the Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO), is development of services and protocols that respond to the growing size and complexity of astronomy data sets. This paper describes how VAO staff are active in such development efforts, especially in innovative strategies and techniques that recognize the limited operating budgets likely available to astronomers even as demand increases. The project has a program of professional outreach whereby new services and protocols are evaluated.

  18. The Role in the Virtual Astronomical Observatory in the Era of Massive Data Sets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Berriman, G. Bruce; Hanisch, Robert J.; Lazio, T. Joseph W.

    2012-01-01

    The Virtual Observatory (VO) is realizing global electronic integration of astronomy data. One of the long-term goals of the U.S. VO project, the Virtual Astronomical Observatory (VAO), is development of services and protocols that respond to the growing size and complexity of astronomy data sets. This paper describes how VAO staff are active in such development efforts, especially in innovative strategies and techniques that recognize the limited operating budgets likely available to astronomers even as demand increases. The project has a program of professional outreach whereby new services and protocols are evaluated.

  19. The SOAR Telescope Project Southern Observatory for Astronomical Research (SOAR)

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2003-03-21

    completed SOAR dome and facility. 2. Dome The preliminary design of the dome was handled by M3 (US). A Brazilian firm, Equatorial Sistemas led the...for the Gemini Telescope during construction, now Project Manager at the National Solar Observatory • Robert Shelton, Provost of the University on

  20. Pervaya uchebnaya astronomicheskaya observatoriya Moskovskogo universiteta %t The first eductational astronomical observatory of the Moscow University

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ponomareva, G. A.; Shcheglov, P. V.

    Using archive materials found in the Central Historical Archive of Moscow and early publications in Russian and German press, we follow the history of the struggle for the foundation of the University's astronomical observatory by M. N. Muravyov, the University Warden in 1803-1807. Though F. Goldbach, the astronomy professor in 1804-1811, prepared the observatory's plan and budget, it was not possible to begin construction works. Nevertheless, a wooden dome was built in 1804 on the roof of the University's main building, referred to as "the astronomical bellevedere" by Muravyov. This fist educational astronomical observatory was used for practical studies and for the students' observations. F. Goldbach himself observed from the window of a room in his apartment, so his colleagues called that room "Goldbach's observatory". Later this fact was a source of confusion for the University's historiographers. The educational observatory was destroyed, with the whole University, by the fire in September 1812. The existing archive documents claim that the Moscow University's Presnya observatory was built as a replacemnet of the one destroyed by the fire in 1812.

  1. The Astronomical Observatory of the University of Coimbra (1772--1799): its Instruments and Scientific Activity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Figueiredo, Fernando B.

    2012-09-01

    The establishment of scientific education at the University of Coimbra was one of the most important features of the Reform of the University in 1772. One of the best examples is the creation of the Faculty Mathematics and of the Astronomical Observatory (OAUC) - it was here that Alexandre Gouveia (1731--1808), who would be bishop of Beijing (1785--1808), obtained his degree in Mathematics. The foundation of the OAUC was fundamental in the institutionalization of astronomical science in Portugal, during a period when astronomy, supported by the great theoretical advances of the celestial mechanics and applied mathematics, could finally provide some important solutions to the most prominent scientific problems since Newton (questions about celestial mechanics, navigation, geodesy, etc.). Such questions were also central in the conception and planning of OAUC - the first Portuguese university-based astronomical observatory, although with aspects of a National Observatory. Jose Monteiro da Rocha (1734--1819) was the central personality in the conception, planning and construction of OAUC, as well in its instrument's provision (purchased and assembled throughout the 1780s) and posterior scientific activity. The construction of the OAUC was originally planned for the site of the Castle of the city of Coimbra. In 1775, when only the first floor of the Observatory was built, the construction stopped. However, to fulfill the teaching needs a small provisional Observatory was built inside the courtyard of the University. This provisional Observatory would eventually run for about 15 years! The definitive OAUC was built between the years 1790--99. In this communication we pretend to study the establishment of the OAUC and its primary astronomical collection (a transit instrument, a portable quadrant, a sector, several telescopes, etc.) and how that collection was responsible for the construction plan of the OAUC and the establishment of its Astronomical Ephemeris (1803).

  2. Radioastronomy at the National Astronomical Observatory of Colombia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guevara Gómez, J. C.; Calvo-Mozo, B.; Martinez Oliveros, J. C.

    2015-12-01

    Colombia is located in the northern tip of South America close to the amazon rain forest. This makes astronomical observations in the visible range very challenging, as cloud coverage is relatively high. Hence, radio astronomy becomes a natural and good choice. We present the design, characterization and first results of the Observatorio Astronomico Nacional solar radio spectrograph. This instrument is a Log-Periodic Dipole Array Antenna (LPDA) working between 100 MHz and 1 GHz optimized for solar observations. The radio spectrograph is a working prototype for a more ambitious solar radio interferometer, that will be the first instrument of this kind in Colombia.

  3. The Development of Astronomy in Odessa and its Reflection in Publications of the Astronomical Observatory, Odessa State University

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dorokhova, Tatyana N.

    Dramatic, rich in events, the history of Odessa Astronomical Observatory during 127 years of its existence is reflected to a certain extent in the publications of the Astronomical Observatory and Odessa State University. These publications were neither regular nor numerous for different reasons, but nevertheless they do indicate landmarks of the basic directions of the development of astronomy in Odessa.

  4. Some characteristics of new type of hydrogen maser receiver in Shaanxi Astronomical Observatory.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ren, Yan

    1990-12-01

    Some characteristics of the new type of hydrogen maser receiver in Shaanxi Astronomical Observatory are described, and the methods of noise rejection are presented in detail. The measured results show that the stability is 1.8×10-13s-1.

  5. Knowing the people who come to public astronomical observatories: The case of Akita prefecture, Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kawamura, N.

    2015-03-01

    The purpose of this research is to know and gain a better understanding of people who come to astronomical observatories and to find out more about their experiences and thoughts on astronomy. To find some of the issues about science communication in astronomy, the author carried out questionnaire research studies involving high school students and junior high school and elementary school teachers.

  6. The BOOTES-5 telescope at San Pedro Martir National Astronomical Observatory, Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hiriart, D.; Valdez, J.; Martínez, B.; García, B.; Cordova, A.; Colorado, E.; Guisa, G.; Ochoa, J. L.; Nuñez, J. M.; Ceseña, U.; Cunniffe, R.; Murphy, D.; Lee, W.; Park, Il H.; Castro-Tirado, A. J.

    2016-12-01

    BOOTES-5 is the fifth robotic observatory of the international network of robotic telescopes BOOTES (Burst Observer and Optical Transient Exploring Optical System). It is located at the National Astronomical Observatory at Sierra San Pedro Martir, Baja California, Mexico. It was dedicated on November 26, 2015 and it is in the process of testing. Its main scientific objective is the observation and monitoring of the optic counterparts of gamma-ray bursts as quickly as possible once they have been detected from space or other ground-based observatories. BOOTES-5 fue nombrado Telescopio Javier Gorosabel en memoria del astrónomo español Javier Gorosabel Urkia.

  7. Providing Comprehensive and Consistent Access to Astronomical Observatory Archive Data: The NASA Archive Model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McGlynn, Thomas; Guiseppina, Fabbiano A; Accomazzi, Alberto; Smale, Alan; White, Richard L.; Donaldson, Thomas; Aloisi, Alessandra; Dower, Theresa; Mazzerella, Joseph M.; Ebert, Rick; hide

    2016-01-01

    Since the turn of the millennium a constant concern of astronomical archives have begun providing data to the public through standardized protocols unifying data from disparate physical sources and wavebands across the electromagnetic spectrum into an astronomical virtual observatory (VO). In October 2014, NASA began support for the NASA Astronomical Virtual Observatories (NAVO) program to coordinate the efforts of NASA astronomy archives in providing data to users through implementation of protocols agreed within the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA). A major goal of the NAVO collaboration has been to step back from a piecemeal implementation of IVOA standards and define what the appropriate presence for the US and NASA astronomy archives in the VO should be. This includes evaluating what optional capabilities in the standards need to be supported, the specific versions of standards that should be used, and returning feedback to the IVOA, to support modifications as needed. We discuss a standard archive model developed by the NAVO for data archive presence in the virtual observatory built upon a consistent framework of standards defined by the IVOA. Our standard model provides for discovery of resources through the VO registries, access to observation and object data, downloads of image and spectral data and general access to archival datasets. It defines specific protocol versions, minimum capabilities, and all dependencies. The model will evolve as the capabilities of the virtual observatory and needs of the community change.

  8. Providing comprehensive and consistent access to astronomical observatory archive data: the NASA archive model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McGlynn, Thomas; Fabbiano, Giuseppina; Accomazzi, Alberto; Smale, Alan; White, Richard L.; Donaldson, Thomas; Aloisi, Alessandra; Dower, Theresa; Mazzerella, Joseph M.; Ebert, Rick; Pevunova, Olga; Imel, David; Berriman, Graham B.; Teplitz, Harry I.; Groom, Steve L.; Desai, Vandana R.; Landry, Walter

    2016-07-01

    Since the turn of the millennium a constant concern of astronomical archives have begun providing data to the public through standardized protocols unifying data from disparate physical sources and wavebands across the electromagnetic spectrum into an astronomical virtual observatory (VO). In October 2014, NASA began support for the NASA Astronomical Virtual Observatories (NAVO) program to coordinate the efforts of NASA astronomy archives in providing data to users through implementation of protocols agreed within the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA). A major goal of the NAVO collaboration has been to step back from a piecemeal implementation of IVOA standards and define what the appropriate presence for the US and NASA astronomy archives in the VO should be. This includes evaluating what optional capabilities in the standards need to be supported, the specific versions of standards that should be used, and returning feedback to the IVOA, to support modifications as needed. We discuss a standard archive model developed by the NAVO for data archive presence in the virtual observatory built upon a consistent framework of standards defined by the IVOA. Our standard model provides for discovery of resources through the VO registries, access to observation and object data, downloads of image and spectral data and general access to archival datasets. It defines specific protocol versions, minimum capabilities, and all dependencies. The model will evolve as the capabilities of the virtual observatory and needs of the community change.

  9. Using Virtual Astronomical Observatory Tools for Astronomy 101

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mighell, Kenneth J.; Garmany, K.; Larson, K.; Eastwood, K. D.

    2009-01-01

    The Virtual Observatory provides several tools that are useful for educators. With these tools, instructors can easily provide real data to students in an environment that engages student curiosity and builds student understanding. In this poster we demonstrate how the tools Aladin and TOPCAT can be used to enhance astronomy education. The Aladin Sky Atlas is a Virtual Observatory portal from the CDS that displays images, superimposes catalogs, and provides interactive access to data. For illustration, we show an exercise for non-science majors in a college-level astronomy course that introduces students to the HR diagram of star clusters. After launching the pre-loaded Aladin applet, students select their own stars, connecting visual cues of brightness and color to the conceptual meaning behind a quantitative HR diagram. TOPCAT can be linked with Aladin on the desktop to let students analyze their data, perform calculations, and create professional-quality graphs. The basic exercise can be easily expanded to address other learning objectives and provides a launching point for students to access, visualize, and explore multi-wavelength data as they continue in astronomy. As a second example, we show an exercise that uses TOPCAT to do three-dimensional plotting of the positions of open and globular cluster to illustrate galactic structure. Detailed information is available at the following website: http://www.noao.edu/staff/mighell/nvoss2008/ . This research was done at the 2008 U.S. National Virtual Observatory Summer School which was held in Santa Fe, New Mexico on September 3 - 11, 2008 and was sponsored by the National Science Foundation.

  10. A Needs Analysis Study of Amateur Astronomers As Regards To the National Virtual Observatory Outreach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Craig, N.; Price, A.; Mattei, J.; Mendez, B.; Hawkins, I.; UC Berkeley Team; AAVSO Collaboration

    2003-12-01

    Astronomy, more than any other science, benefits from the active contribution of Amateur Astronomers, who bring to this field a high degree of skill and dedication. Amateur Astronomers make direct contributions to informal and public education: they present public lectures and courses; organize star parties, international Astronomy Day programs, and special displays in libraries and shopping malls; they write articles and books and produce radio and television programs; they lobby for planetariums, science centers, public observatories, and even NASA satellites. Above all, amateur astronomers convey their enthusiasm for science with dedication and devotion. They represent a unique and exceptional way in which ordinary citizens can support science and education at the grass-roots level. We have conducted a needs analysis survey, with collaboration of The American Association of Variable Star Observers (AAVSO) to identify areas in which the National Virtual Observatory (NVO) Education & Public Outreach efforts can best address the astronomical needs and interest of the amateur astronomical community. We found that above all amateurs want access to the same data the professionals use and in a format that allows them to use the data in their own personal manner. We will discuss the further results of this qualitative and quantitative survey. This study is supported by Science Education Gateway (SEGway) Project, a NASA SR&T (Supporting Research and Technology) Program.

  11. Karl Knorre, the first astronomer of Nikolaev Observatory (on the occasion of his bicentenary)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petrov, G. M.; Pinigin, G. I.

    2002-07-01

    Karl Friedrich Knorre (1801-1883) was the son of Ernst Knorre, an astronomy professor at Dorpat university. During his education at Dorpat university, he became acquainted with Wilhelm Struve, the future director of Pulkovo observatory. Because of Knorre's passion for astronomy, Struve recommended him to the post of director of the planned naval observatory in Nikolaev. From its foundation in 1821, Karl Knorre was director of the Nikolaev Naval (and later Astronomical) Observatory. He carried out star position observations with the meridian circle, worked as an astronomy instructor for sea navigators, compiled the fifth section of the star charts of the Berlin Academy of Sciences and lead all hydrographic determinations on the Azov and Black seas. In 1871, Karl Nikolaev Observatory, and moved to Berlin.

  12. LST: The National Space Observatory concept - An observatory for future astronomer involvement in planning and use

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roman, N. G.

    1974-01-01

    The Large Space Telescope (LST) will be a unique facility which must be designed to serve the needs of all potential users throughout the world. This requires that a representative group of astronomers work intimately with the engineers in the early design of the telescope and that astronomers continue to be closely involved in the planning throughout the life of the project. Forty scientists are now defining the auxiliary instruments and their operation. Later, others will build instruments and participate in assigning observing time on the telescope, on the basis of the scientific merit of the proposed observation.

  13. The Chandra X-ray Observatory: An Astronomical Facility Available to the World

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, Randall K.

    2006-01-01

    The Chandra X-ray observatory, one of NASA's "Great Observatories," provides high angular and spectral resolution X-ray data which is freely available to all. In this review I describe the instruments on chandra along with their current calibration, as well as the chandra proposal system, the freely-available Chandra analysis software package CIAO, and the Chandra archive. As Chandra is in its 6th year of operation, the archive already contains calibrated observations of a large range of X-ray sources. The Chandra X-ray Center is committed to assisting astronomers from any country who wish to use data from the archive or propose for observations

  14. Automatic Rotational Sky Quality Meter (R-SQM) Design and Software for Astronomical Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dogan, E.; Ozbaldan, E. E.; Shameoni, Niaei M.; Yesilyaprak, C.

    2016-12-01

    We have presented the new design of Sky Quality Meter (SQM) device that is an automatic rotational model of sky quality meter (R-SQM) carried out by DAG (Eastern Anatolia Observatory) Technical Team. R-SQM is required for determining the long-term changes of sky quality of an astronomical observatory and consists of four SQM devices mounted on a rotating shaft with different angles for scanning all sky. This system is controlled by a Raspberry Pi control card and a step motor with its driver and a special software.

  15. Property and instrumental heritage of the Bordeaux Astronomical Observatory; What future?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    de La Noë, J.; Charlot, P.; Grousset, F.

    2009-11-01

    In the years 1870, the Government of the Third Republic decided to develop scientific and technical research. Such an effort contributed to supporting and creating universities and other institutes such as astronomical observatories. The dual wish of the Bordeaux council and professors at the Faculté des Sciences de Bordeaux led to the foundation of the astronomical Observatory of Bordeaux. It was set up by Georges Rayet in the years 1880's. The observatory owns a property of 12 hectares with a dozen of buildings, five domes housing an instrument, a Würzburg radiotelescope, a 2.5 meter radiotelescope, and a large collection of about 250 instruments, 4 500 photographic plates, drawings, slides for teaching astronomy, maps of the Carte du Ciel and 200 files of archives. In addition, the library contains about a thousand books for the period 1600-1950. The future of the observatory is not clear at the present time, when the Laboratoire d'Astrophysique will leave to the campus in a few years.

  16. Development of System Software for Astronomical Observations by CCD Photometric System in Astronomical Observatory of Kyung Hee University

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jin, Ho; Kim, Kap-Sung

    1994-12-01

    We have investigated intensively an optical telescope with 76cm diameter and CCD camera system in astronomical observatory of Kyung Hee university, in order to maximize instrumental functions of our observational equipments and to construct a more reliable photometric system. And computer softwares AUTO DOME, KH CCD and KH PHO for astronomical image observations and their automatic photometries with high accuracy have been made for observers to use our observational system conveniently and efficiently. Throughout careful examinations of these programs, it has been proved that the observing time by our program is shorter than that by manual operations, so that, fast and accurate observations can be executed with ease. For open cluster NGC 7063 observed with S/N value of 350 or more by KH PHO, we have found the magnitude measurements of 11 object stars would show 0.007 magnitude difference, comparing with magnitude data from IRAF/APPHOT. From automatic photometry of eclipsing binary, AB And observed by our software, total 220 data points with good quality have been acquired during 8 hours and so we could make a better light curve than that obtained from any observational results by domestic photoelectric photometry system.

  17. The Rare Book Collection of Capodimonte Astronomical Observatory Will be on the Web: Ancient Science Available to Everyone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cirella, E. O.; Caprio, G.

    2015-04-01

    This paper describes a project for the preservation, promotion, and creation of a website for the rare book collection of Capodimonte Astronomical Observatory. The project, promoted by INAF—Capodimonte Astronomical Observatory, was supported by the Campania Region through European funds. The final component of the project was the publication of a bibliographical catalog, Le Cinquecentine dell'Osservatorio Astronomico di Capodimonte, which was addressed to specialized users, including historians of science and bibliophiles.

  18. Twentieth-century astronomical heritage: the case of the Brazilian National Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barboza, Christina Helena

    2016-10-01

    This paper aims at contributing to the UNESCO-IAU Astronomy and World Heritage Initiative's discussions by presenting the case study of a 20th-century observatory located in a South American country. In fact, the National Observatory of Brazil was created in the beginning of the 19th century, but its present facilities were inaugurated in 1921. Through this paper a brief description of the heritage associated with the Brazilian observatory is given, focused on its main historical instruments and the scientific and social roles it performed along its history. By way of conclusion, the paper suggests that the creation of the Museum of Astronomy and Related Sciences with its multidisciplinary team of academic specialists and technicians was decisive for the preservation of that expressive astronomical heritage.

  19. Comparison of Superconducting and Spring Gravimeters at the Mizusawa VLBI Observatory of the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miura, Satoshi; Ikeda, Hiroshi; Kim, Tae-Hee; Tamura, Yoshiaki

    2017-04-01

    Continuous microgravity monitoring is utilized to gain new insights into changes in the subsurface distribution of magma and/or fluid that commonly occur beneath active volcanoes. Rather new superconducting and spring gravimeters, iGrav#003 and gPhone#136 are collocated with a superconducting gravimeter, TT#70 at the Mizusawa VLBI Observatory of the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan, since the end of September, 2016 in order to evaluate those performances before field deployment planned in 2017. Calibration of iGrav#003 was carried out by collocation with an absolute gravimeter FG5 of the Earthquake Research Institute, University of Tokyo (Okubo, 2016, personal comm.) at a Fundamental Gravity Station in Sendai in July, 2016. Based on the scale factors of iGrav#003 obtained by the calibration and of gPhone#136 provided by the manufacturer (Micro-g LaCoste, Inc.), tidal analyses are performed by means of BAYTAP-G (Tamura et al., 1991, GJI). Amplitudes and phases of each major tidal constituent mutually agree well within ±4 % and ±3 degrees, respectively. The instrumental drift rate of iGrav#003 is very low, about 5 micro-Gal/month, whereas that of gPhone#136 is very high, about 500 micro-Gal/month. The high drift rate of gPhone#136, however, is well approximated by a quadratic function at present and can be removed. The detrended time series of gPhone#136 shows good agreement with iGrav#003 time series in the overall feature: gravity fluctuations with amplitudes of about a few micro-Gal and with durations of a few days, which may be due to variations in the moisture content of the topmost unsaturated sedimentary layer and the water table height. It suggests that both instruments may capture volcanic signals associated with pressure changes in magma chambers, dike intrusion/withdrawing, and so on. iGrav#003 will be installed in the Zao volcanological observatory of Tohoku University located at about 3 km from the summit crater, and gPhone#136 will be

  20. Preventing Rape of the Observatory: Thoughts on the Urgency of Preserving Historic Astronomical Artifacts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bell, T. E.

    2005-12-01

    "What good is this century-old monster refractor? Sell it and use the money to buy a brand new go-to reflector useful for teaching students and advancing astronomy." So argues logic that is endangering an increasing number of university observatories around the U.S. (if not the rest of the world), even up to the Yerkes Observatory and its 40-inch Clark, world's largest refractor by the acknowledged world's best lens-makers. While most non-historians readily accept the value of preserving our cultural heritage in rare and precious documents (such as the Declaration of Independence), artifacts (such as Stradivarius violins), and institutions (such as the birthplaces of U.S. Presidents), they tend not to think of astronomical observatories as part of cultural heritage-with a result that history is crumbling apace to the wrecking ball. In early October, the Antique Telescope Society convened a special 60-minute session discussing philosophical why's and practical how's of preserving astronomical assets (including historically significant telescopes, observatory buildings, auxiliary equipment used to make observations or calculate results, and libraries of books and papers). This paper will summarize the discussion's key insights - including the assessing and assigning of value to old vs. new telescopes, and the roles of politics, funding and fund-raising, publicity (positive and negative), education, use as a form of preservation, innovative solutions by private collectors (including "half-way houses" for homeless instruments), restoration vs. renovation, special problems facing very large telescopes, and lessons learned from both failures and success.

  1. From Amateur Astronomer to Observatory Director: The Curious Case of R. T. A. Innes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Orchiston, Wayne

    Robert Innes was one of a select band of amateur astronomers who made the transition to professional ranks towards the end of the nineteenth century. Initially he had a passion for mathematical astronomy, but after settling in Sydney he developed a taste for observational astronomy, specialising in the search for new double stars. He quickly became known for his success in this field and for his publications on solar system perturbations, and with John Tebbutt's patronage managed to secure a clerical position at the Royal Observatory, Cape of Good Hope. Once there he continued to observe in his spare time and to publish, and, with strong support from Sir David Gill, was appointed founding Director of the Transvaal Observatory. By the time he died in 1933, Innes had received an honorary D.Sc. from Leiden University, and had established an international reputation as a positional astronomer. This paper provides an interesting case study of a well-known `amateur-turned-professional', and an example of the ways in which patronage played a key role in nineteenth and early twentieth century Australian and South African astronomy.

  2. Detection and Implications of Laser-Induced Raman Scattering at Astronomical Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vogt, Frédéric P. A.; Bonaccini Calia, Domenico; Hackenberg, Wolfgang; Opitom, Cyrielle; Comin, Mauro; Schmidtobreik, Linda; Smoker, Jonathan; Blanchard, Israel; Espinoza Contreras, Marcela; Aranda, Ivan; Milli, Julien; Jaffe, Yara L.; Selman, Fernando; Kolb, Johann; Hibon, Pascale; Kuntschner, Harald; Madec, Pierre-Yves

    2017-04-01

    Laser guide stars employed at astronomical observatories provide artificial wavefront reference sources to help correct (in part) the impact of atmospheric turbulence on astrophysical observations. Following the recent commissioning of the 4 Laser Guide Star Facility (4LGSF) on Unit Telescope 4 (UT4) of the Very Large Telescope (VLT), we characterize the spectral signature of the uplink beams from the 22-W lasers to assess the impact of laser scattering from the 4LGSF on science observations. We use the Multi-Unit Spectroscopic Explorer (MUSE) optical integral field spectrograph mounted on the Nasmyth B focus of UT4 to acquire spectra at a resolution of R ≅3000 of the uplink laser beams over the wavelength range of 4750 Å-9350 Å. We report the first detection of laser-induced Raman scattering by N2 , O2 , CO2 , H2O , and (tentatively) CH4 molecules in the atmosphere above the astronomical observatory of Cerro Paranal. In particular, our observations reveal the characteristic spectral signature of laser photons—but 480 Å to 2210 Å redder than the original laser wavelength of 5889.959 Å—landing on the 8.2-m primary mirror of UT4 after being Raman-scattered on their way up to the sodium layer. Laser-induced Raman scattering, a phenomenon not usually discussed in the astronomical context, is not unique to the observatory of Cerro Paranal, but it is common to any astronomical telescope employing a laser guide star (LGS) system. It is thus essential for any optical spectrograph coupled to a LGS system to thoroughly handle the possibility of a Raman spectral contamination via a proper baffling of the instrument and suitable calibrations procedures. These considerations are particularly applicable for the HARMONI optical spectrograph on the upcoming Extremely Large Telescope (ELT). At sites hosting multiple telescopes, laser-collision-prediction tools should also account for the presence of Raman emission from the uplink laser beam(s) to avoid the unintentional

  3. The Cornell Astronomical Society: The Student Experience of Running an Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hammer, Michael; Blackburn, B.; Fredricks, J.; Garcia, K.; Poniatowski, A.; Schindler, K.; Wilk, A.

    2014-01-01

    The Cornell Astronomical Society is an undergraduate student-run organization that operates Cornell’s on-campus Fuertes Observatory with the help of members of the astronomy department and local amateur astronomy volunteers. While some of our members study physics or astronomy, the majority of our club members represent a diverse spectrum of majors both inside and outside of other STEM fields. Our primary activity as a club is to host weekly public stargazing nights that are attended annually by over two thousand people in a city of Ithaca that has a population of only one hundred thousand. We train our members to use a variety of telescopes and to open and close the observatory with the ultimate goal of having any one of us able to operate Fuertes individually. We also teach stargazing-related astronomy knowledge and host a weekly public lecture series, in which CAS members give talks on basic, but interesting topics in astronomy. Our club effort has made Fuertes Observatory a true part of the Cornell experience.

  4. TELICS—A Telescope Instrument Control System for Small/Medium Sized Astronomical Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Srivastava, Mudit K.; Ramaprakash, A. N.; Burse, Mahesh P.; Chordia, Pravin A.; Chillal, Kalpesh S.; Mestry, Vilas B.; Das, Hillol K.; Kohok, Abhay A.

    2009-10-01

    For any modern astronomical observatory, it is essential to have an efficient interface between the telescope and its back-end instruments. However, for small and medium-sized observatories, this requirement is often limited by tight financial constraints. Therefore a simple yet versatile and low-cost control system is required for such observatories to minimize cost and effort. Here we report the development of a modern, multipurpose instrument control system TELICS (Telescope Instrument Control System) to integrate the controls of various instruments and devices mounted on the telescope. TELICS consists of an embedded hardware unit known as a common control unit (CCU) in combination with Linux-based data acquisition and user interface. The hardware of the CCU is built around the ATmega 128 microcontroller (Atmel Corp.) and is designed with a backplane, master-slave architecture. A Qt-based graphical user interface (GUI) has been developed and the back-end application software is based on C/C++. TELICS provides feedback mechanisms that give the operator good visibility and a quick-look display of the status and modes of instruments as well as data. TELICS has been used for regular science observations since 2008 March on the 2 m, f/10 IUCAA Telescope located at Girawali in Pune, India.

  5. Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis integrated with GIS and remote sensing for astronomical observatory site selection in Antalya province, Turkey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koc-San, D.; San, B. T.; Bakis, V.; Helvaci, M.; Eker, Z.

    2013-07-01

    Astronomical observatory site selection is a complex problem that involves evaluation of multiple factors from different sources. The aim of this study is to select the best possible candidates for astronomical observations sites using Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis integrated with Geographical Information Systems and remote sensing technologies. The study was implemented in the Antalya province of Turkey, which is convenient for astronomical site observatory facilities with its appropriate climate properties and weather conditions. Eleven factors (cloud cover, precipitable water, earthquake zones, geology, landslide inventory, active fault lines, Digital Elevation Model, city lights, mining activities, settlement areas, roads) were determined, splitting into three categories; meteorological, geographical and anthropogenic criteria. These factors were evaluated using Analytical Hierarchy Process method and the weights of criteria layers were determined. As a result, the most suitable areas were located extensively in western and eastern part of Antalya. This study offers a robust, accurate, cost and time effective procedure for preliminary site selection for astronomical observatory. However, for a final decision of the best location of astronomical observatory, site testing measurements and atmospheric seeing observations will be further required in these preliminary areas.

  6. History of the astronomical almanacs, yarbooks and calendars, the particapation of the Kyiv University Observatory in their creation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kazantseva, L. V.

    2017-05-01

    Astronomical Ephemeris, information about the circumstances of apparition various celestial objects long been used for professionals as well as amateur astronomy. The story of annual reference books with similar information was studied not well. In publications sometimes appear inconsistent and incomplete data. In particular, little known facts about participation of Kyiv astronomers in the creation of such publications, it was since the nineteenth century. The analysis of archival sources and funds Astronomical Museum allow drawing conclusions about the significant contribution the University Observatory to ephemeris service

  7. ``What Are Astronomers Doing?" at McDonald Observatory: An Education/Public Outreach Website and Museum Kiosk

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hemenway, M. K.; Preston, S. L.; Johnson, R. A.; Young, C. H.; Connor, P. S.; Summers, A. C.; Tykoski, M. J.

    2004-05-01

    ``What are Astronomers Doing?" is a weekly updated web site and on-site kiosk that details current research at McDonald Observatory for the general public. At any given time, site visitors will find descriptions of all research going on that week on the Observatory's three traditionally scheduled telescopes, a description of an approved trimester project for the queue-scheduled Hobby-Eberly Telescope, and descriptions of any maintenance or special public events on the telescopes. There is also a ``NASA Astronomer of the Week" profile in which some of the featured astronomers are those who perform research that does not require McDonald telescopes. Each project write-up is accompanied by a biography of the astronomer or engineer in charge. Graduate-student, undergraduate, and K-12 teacher interns prepared material for the site. All text is edited by a professional editor and tech edited for accuracy by astronomers. Additionally, site-related classroom activities are available for grade 6-12 classrooms. The web template is available for use by other institutions. We gratefully acknowledge the support of NSF 0227870 ``What Are Astronomers Doing?: A Project for MPS Internships in Public Science Education" and support for the ``NASA Astronomer of the Week" profile by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration under an Education and Public Outreach supplement to Grant/Contract/Agreement No. NAG5-13057 issued through the Office of Space Science.

  8. A small collection of sunspot drawings made in the Royal Astronomical Observatory of the Spanish Navy in 1884

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Galaviz, P.; Vaquero, J. M.; Gallego, M. C.; Sánchez-Bajo, F.

    2016-12-01

    In this paper we analyze a small collection of sunspot drawings made at the Astronomical Observatory of the Spanish Navy in the period from April 1, 1884 to August 18, 1884. We calculate the area and the heliographic coordinates of the observed sunspots. From these coordinates, we obtain the solar rotation rate in this period. Finally, we compare our results with the data recorded by the Royal Greenwich Observatory.

  9. About using wide field lens optics for Space Surveillance Systems in Odessa Astronomical observatory (Ukraine)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sukhov, P. P.; Volkoff, S. K.; Karpenko, G. F.; Titenko, V. V.; Yamnitsky, V. A.; Tkachenko, A. A.

    2007-08-01

    On base results of the observations in Odessa astronomical observatory, is shown obvious fact. The possibility of the using domestic wide field lens optics for monitoring high orbital artificial Earth satellite objects for the calculations elements of orbits. With wide field lens optics "Tair-19 5003", limited magnitude consist 15m.5 per 10 seconds of the accumulation, average square-error (ASE) of the measurements of the coordinates slowly move GSS consist not more than 2 arcsec. Beside 90% measurements has ASE not more 1 arcsec. At surveillance of the area of the equator by width 5° areas 500 deg2 are discovered all 40 active "standing" GSS, 12 passive GSS and 2 high elliptical orbital satellites (HEO). Is shown perspective possibility of the use WFO for monitoring LEO height before of 2 000 km. 90% of 39 object LEO fixed in mode "beam-park" (the still telescope) in current 1 hour, surelay are identified using catalog NORAD.

  10. SAO/NASA joint investigation of astronomical viewing quality at Mount Hopkins Observatory: 1969-1971

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pearlman, M. R.; Bufton, J. L.; Hogan, D.; Kurtenbach, D.; Goodwin, K.

    1974-01-01

    Quantitative measurements of the astronomical seeing conditions have been made with a stellar-image monitor system at the Mt. Hopkins Observatory in Arizona. The results of this joint SAO-NASA experiment indicate that for a 15-cm-diameter telescope, image motion is typically 1 arcsec or less and that intensity fluctuations due to scintillation have a coefficient of irradiance variance of less than 0.12 on the average. Correlations between seeing quality and local meteorological conditions were investigated. Local temperature fluctuations and temperature gradients were found to be indicators of image-motion conditions, while high-altitude-wind conditions were shown to be somewhat correlated with scintillation-spectrum bandwidth. The theoretical basis for the relationship of atmospheric turbulence to optical effects is discussed in some detail, along with a description of the equipment used in the experiment. General site-testing comments and applications of the seeing-test results are also included.

  11. Four criteria to find an optimal location in Colombia for a millimeter wave astronomical observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ramírez Suárez, O. L.; Martínez Mercado, A. M.; Restrepo Gaitán, O. A.; Chaparro Molano, G.

    2017-07-01

    To find an optimal location for a mm-wave astronomical observatory, all factors that directly or indirectly affect the water vapor column density should be considered. After estimating a weighted classification of these factors to obtain a range of acceptable values, places satisfying as many of these suitability conditions can be proposed as candidates. Here we analyze data from NASA and IDEAM to find places satisfying the best conditions to build a mm-wave astronomical observatory in Colombia, according to seven variables grouped into four classes. From NASA, we analyze the satellite data of: (i) relative humidity and (ii) cloud coverage/direct normal radiation, averaged monthly from 1983 to 2005. From IDEAM, we analyze data of relative humidity, sunshine, and (iii) precipitation/number of days with rain, averaged yearly over each month from 1981 to 2010. The data has been obtained in-situ by 2046 weather monitoring stations across Colombia, for which their (iv) altitude is known. For each quantity, we do a Principal Component Analysis, reducing the dimensionality of the yearly-averaged data to 2 components covering >90% of the variance. After this, we make a classification of the reduced-dimension data using a 4 cluster Gaussian Mixture Model (GMM), identifying similar geographic and climatological patterns. After selecting clusters of stations sharing optimal conditions (i.e. high altitude, low rain, etc.), we group and look for geographical clusters by applying a GMM on a Monte Carlo sampling of latitude, longitude, and altitude data in order to correct for biases. This method allows us to find regions of interest where further in-situ measurements of atmospheric absorption of mm-wave should be carried out in the future.

  12. The fading star of the Paris Observatory in the nineteenth century: astronomers' urban culture of circulation and observation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aubin, David

    Engulfing the Observatoire de Paris around 1860, the modernizing city clashed with the increasing precision required by astronomy. Suggestions to transfer the observatory to the suburbs gave rise to intense debates; these provide an enlightening standpoint for studying changes in observation and circulation regimes central to the mutations of both urban cultures and astronomical scientific practices. Moreover, these regime changes took place in a context of constant interaction between the city and the observatory. At practical levels, the changing experience of circulation and observation led to a parceling of the various tasks previously filled by the Paris Observatory and gave rise to an epistemology reminiscent of Latour's network theory.

  13. Astronomical Databases in the XVII-XVIII Centuries: Old Astronomical Books in the Library of Gothard Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jankovics, I.; Horvath, J.; Vincze, I. J.

    The historical Gothard collection of library and scientific-technical instruments is a valuable inheritance of the Gothard Observatory. This makes it possible to provide a cultural and historical window to the development of scientific knowledge and thinking. The Gothard Observatory is eager to share the wonders this rich scientific treasury with colleagues of the ages of Networked Information.

  14. Twentieth-century astronomical heritage: the case of the Brazilian National Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barboza, Christina Helena

    2015-08-01

    The National Observatory of Brazil was created in 1827. It was initially focused on the practical teaching of Astronomy to the students of military and naval academies. Since the mid-nineteenth century to the early twentieth century it was installed over the ruins of a Jesuit church located in the center of Rio de Janeiro, capital of the Brazilian Empire.Due to the constant complaints of its successive directors, the search for a new site to house the Observatory began in 1911. The new headquarters of the institution were located on the hill of São Januário, a little further but still around the city center of Rio de Janeiro. Its inauguration took place in 1921.The main building of the new Observatory was based on one of the Brazilian pavilions of the Turin Exhibition of 1911, and its architecture can be characterized as eclectic. The pavilions intended to house the many telescopes were scattered in a large wooded area. Since 1985 all these facilities are protected by the Federal government, as a consequence of the same initiative that gave birth to the Museum of Astronomy and Related Sciences, which has the custody also of the Observatory’s former instruments, furniture, and documents.Although built in the early twentieth century the National Observatory new facilities reveal astronomical practices typical of the previous century. One of its most important activities was the determination of the legal time, a task that justifies its location in the urban environment. It was also responsible for the organization of expeditions destined to determine the geographical positions of railroads and the borders of Brazil. For this reason, the Museum of Astronomy has currently more than 3,000 portable instruments. Moreover, these instruments belong to the domain of Astronomy, but also to Geodesy, Meteorology, Electricity. Due to the creation of the Museum of Astronomy, this rich collection is now open to public visitation, and has become the object of scholarly

  15. The National Astronomical Observatory ""Rozhen"" - A Centre for Astrophysical Investigations in Bulgaria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kolev, D.

    2008-10-01

    The Bulgarian National Astronomical Observatory (NAO) located close to the Rozhen ridge in the Rhodope Mountains near Smolyan, is presented with its history, functional characteristics and capabilities. Its latitude of 41° 41.5'N gives opportunities to investigate over 80{%} of the celestial sphere. The altitude of 1750 m lies within the height level that is most populated by observatories (1500-2500m). However, the astroclimate (mean seeing ˜ 2" and 35-40% clear sky time) is worse than that of the best world sites and corresponds to the mean for the continental Southern Europe. The light pollution near NAO is still the lowest among the Balkan sites, but some problems arise because of the ever growing illumination from the Pamporovo resort and the nearby towns of Smolyan and Chepelare. Equipped with 2-m, 70- and 60-cm stellar and 15-cm solar coronograph telescopes, NAO allows observations to be made for a wide range of optical astrophysical investigations: from Solar System bodies to extragalactic sources. The productivity of the 2-m telescope is quite comparable with that of other telescopes of similar class. Important studies (photometric, spectral, morphologic) of stellar clusters, flare stars, variable stars, nearby and distant galaxies were performed with/at the NAO telescopes. The 2-m telescope is very suitable for spectroscopic investigation with moderate resolution and it can be a subject of its future specialization in the era of giant telescopes of decameter size. The future of NAO can be connected with educational and conference activities if Bulgaria joins ESO - the most desirable way to develop astronomy in our land/in our country.

  16. The ISS as a Testbed for Future Large Astronomical Observatories: The OpTIIX Demonstration Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burdick, G.; Callen, P.; Ess, K.; Liu, F.; Postman, M.; Sparks, W.; Seery, B.; Thronson, H.

    2012-01-01

    Future large (diameters in excess of approx. 10 m) astronomical observatories in space will need to employ advanced technologies if they are to be affordable. Many of these technologies are ready to be validated on orbit and the International Space Station (ISS) provides a suitable platform for such demonstrations. These technologies include low-cost, low-density, highly deformable mirror segments, coupled with advanced sensing and control methods. In addition, the ISS offers available telerobotic assembly techniques to build an optical testbed that embodies this new cost-effective approach to assemble and achieve diffraction-limited optical performance for very large space telescopes. Given the importance that NASA attaches to the recommendations of the National Academy of Sciences "Decadal Survey" process, essential capabilities and technologies will be demonstrated well in advance of the next Survey, which commences in 2019. To achieve this objective, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC), NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), and the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) are carrying out a Phase A/B study of the Optical Testbed and Integration on ISS eXperiment (OpTIIX). The overarching goal is to demonstrate well before the end of this decade key capabilities intended to enable very large optical systems in the decade of the 2020s. Such a demonstration will retire technical risk in the assembly, alignment, calibration, and operation of future space observatories. The OpTIIX system, as currently designed, is a six-hexagon element, segmented visual-wavelength telescope with an edge-to-edge aperture of 1.4 m, operating at its diffraction limit,

  17. The South African Astronomical Observatory instrumentation software architecture and the SHOC instruments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Gend, Carel; Lombaard, Briehan; Sickafoose, Amanda; Whittal, Hamish

    2016-07-01

    Until recently, software for instruments on the smaller telescopes at the South African Astronomical Observatory (SAAO) has not been designed for remote accessibility and frequently has not been developed using modern software best-practice. We describe a software architecture we have implemented for use with new and upgraded instruments at the SAAO. The architecture was designed to allow for multiple components and to be fast, reliable, remotely- operable, support different user interfaces, employ as much non-proprietary software as possible, and to take future-proofing into consideration. Individual component drivers exist as standalone processes, communicating over a network. A controller layer coordinates the various components, and allows a variety of user interfaces to be used. The Sutherland High-speed Optical Cameras (SHOC) instruments incorporate an Andor electron-multiplying CCD camera, a GPS unit for accurate timing and a pair of filter wheels. We have applied the new architecture to the SHOC instruments, with the camera driver developed using Andor's software development kit. We have used this to develop an innovative web-based user-interface to the instrument.

  18. Atmospheres in a Test Tube: state of the art at the Astronomical Observatory of Padova.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Erculiani, M. S.; Claudi, R.; Cocola, L.; Giro, E.; La Rocca, N.; Morosinotto, T.; Poletto, L.; Barbisan, D.; Billi, D.; Bonato, M.; D'Alessandro, M.; Galletta, G.; Meneghini, M.; Trivellin, N.; Cestelli Guidi, M.; Pace, E.; Schierano, D.; Micela, G.

    At the Astronomical observatory of Padova we are trying to answer some questions about the detectability of biosignatures in the exoplanetary atmospheres, working in the framework of the project Atmosphere in a Test Tube. In particular we are investigating how the presence of photosynthetic biota living on the surface of a planet orbiting in the HZ of an M type star may modify the atmospheric gas abundances. This can be achieved in laboratory with an environmental simulator called MINI - LISA. The simulator allows to modify the temperature and the pressure inside a test chamber, where a selected population of photosynthetic bacteria is arranged. We'll focalize our experiments on the following bacteria: Acaryochloris marina, Halomicronema hongdechloris, Leptolyngbya sp.1 and Chlorogloeopsis fritschii. The first two bacteria are naturally provided with NIR light metabolizers, like Chl-d and Chl-f, while the last two can develop such pigments if grown in NIR light. The experiment will lead us to obtain useful data to be compared with the ones expected either by the future space missions (JWST, ARIEL) and ground based new instrumentation (SPHERE@VLT; GPI@GEMINI; PCS@E-ELT). In this talk we discuss the layout of the experiment and its state of art.

  19. An automated extinction and sky brightness monitor for the Indian Astronomical Observatory, Hanle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharma, Tarun Kumar; Parihar, Padmakar; Banyal, R. K.; Dar, Ajaz Ahmad; Kemkar, P. M. M.; Stanzin, Urgain; Anupama, G. C.

    2017-09-01

    We have developed a simple and portable device that makes precise and automated measurements of night sky extinction. Our instrument uses a commercially available telephoto lens for light collection, which is retrofitted to a custom-built telescope mount, a thermoelectrically cooled CCD for imaging, and a compact enclosure with electronic control to facilitate remote observations. The instrument is also capable of measuring the sky brightness and detecting the presence of thin clouds that otherwise would remain unnoticed. The measurements of sky brightness made by our simple device are more accurate than those made using a large telescope. Another capability of the device is that it can provide an instantaneous measurement of atmospheric extinction, which is extremely useful for exploring the nature of short-term extinction variation. The instrument was designed and developed primarily in order to characterize and investigate thoroughly the Indian Astronomical Observatory (IAO), Hanle for the establishment of India's future large-telescope project. The device was installed at the IAO, Hanle in 2014 May. In this paper, we present the instrument details and discuss the results of extinction data collected for about 250 nights.

  20. Soil heat flux and day time surface energy balance closure at astronomical observatory, Thiruvananthapuram, south Kerala

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roxy, M. S.; Sumithranand, V. B.; Renuka, G.

    2014-06-01

    Soil heat flux is an important input component of surface energy balance. Estimates of soil heat flux were made in the year 2008 using soil temperature data at Astronomical Observatory, Thiruvananthapuram, south Kerala. Hourly values of soil heat flux from 00 to 24 LST are presented for selected days typical of the winter, pre-monsoon, SW monsoon and NE monsoon seasons. The diurnal variation is characterized by a cross-over from negative to positive values at 0700 h, occurrence of maximum around noon and return to negative values in the late evening. The energy storage term for the soil layer 0-0.05 m is calculated and the ground heat flux G ∗ is estimated in all seasons. Daytime surface energy balance at the surface on wet and dry seasons is investigated. The average Bowen's ratio during the wet and dry seasons were 0.541 and 0.515, respectively indicating that considerable evaporation takes place at the surface. The separate energy balance components were examined and the mean surface energy balance closure was found to be 0.742 and 0.795 for wet and dry seasons, respectively. When a new method that accounts for both soil thermal conduction and soil thermal convection was adopted to calculate the surface heat flux, the energy balance closure was found to be improved. Thus on the land surface under study, the soil vertical water movement is significant.

  1. Search for Best Astronomical Observatory Sites in the MENA Region using Satellite Measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdelaziz, G.; Guebsi, R.; Guessoum, N.; Flamant, C.

    2017-06-01

    We perform a systematic search for astronomical observatory sites in the MENA (Middle-East and North Africa) region using space-based data for all the relevant factors, i.e. altitude (DEM), cloud fraction (CF), light pollution (NTL), precipitable water vapor (PWV), aerosol optical depth (AOD), relative humidity (RH), wind speed (WS), Richardson Number (RN), and diurnal temperature range (DTR). We look for the best locations overall even where altitudes are low (the threshold that we normally consider being 1,500 m) or where the combination of the afore-mentioned determining factors had previously excluded all locations in a given country. In this aim, we use the rich data that Earth-observing satellites provide, e.g. the Terra and Aqua multi-national NASA research satellites, with their MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) and AIRS (Atmospheric Infrared Sounder) instruments, the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program’s Operational Linescan System (DMSP-OLS), and other products from climate diagnostics archives (e.g. MERRA). We present preliminary results on the best locations for the region.

  2. Possible Astronomical meaning of some El Molle findings at the ESO Observatory of La Silla

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vecchiato, Alberto; Bernardi, Gabriella; Bucciarelli, Beatrice

    2015-08-01

    The slopes surrounding the buildings of the European Southern Observatory at La Silla are known to house several hundred rock engravings dating back to the pre-Columbian populations that once inhabited this region. Although precise archaeological studies are missing since none of these sites has been excavated, these petroglyphs are attributed to people of the El Molle Culture, who around AD 300 had just abandoned their original lifestyle of hunting and gathering and developed more evolved settlements based on herding and farming.While it is difficult to ascertain precisely the meaning of these ancient rock engravings, it seems that a specific astronomical alignment can be attributed to a simple yet peculiar, man-made stone structure, which can be found in the same site. The archaeoastronomical dating of this alignment coincides to that of the petroglyphs. Moreover it allows to highlight a noticeable and intriguing connection with a practical function which appears quite reasonable for the population to whom this structure is attributed.

  3. The French Jesuit Mission to Thailand in the 1680s and the Establishment of a Major Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Soonthornthum, Boonrucksar; Orchiston, Wayne; Komonjinda, Siramas

    2012-09-01

    The first great Thai ruler to encourage the adoption of Western culture and technology was King Narai, and his enlightened attitude led to the rapid development of Thailand. King Narai also had a passion for astronomy, and he pursued this interest by allowing French Jesuit missionaries to set up a large modern well-equipped astronomical observatory in Lopburi Province between AD 1685 and 1687. This was known as the Wat San Paolo Observatory, and King Narai and the missionaries observed a total lunar eclipse on 10 December 1685 and a partial solar eclipse on 30 April 1688. These observations and others made at Wat San Paolo Observatory during the 1680s marked the start of modern scientific astronomy in Thailand. In this paper we discuss King Narai's scientific and other interests, the founding of the Wat San Paolo Observatory, the missionaries who conducted the astronomical programs, their instruments and their observations. We also describe the surviving ruins of the Observatory and their interpretation as a site of national scientific importance in Thailand.

  4. Highlighting the history of Japanese radio astronomy. 3: Early solar radio research at the Tokyo Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakajima, Hiroshi; Ishiguro, Masato; Orchiston, Wayne; Akabane, Kenji; Enome, Shinzo; Hayashi, Masa; Kaifu, Norio; Nakamura, Tsuko; Tsuchiya, Atsushi

    2014-03-01

    The radio astronomy group at the Tokyo Astronomical Observatory was founded in 1948 immediately after WWII, and decided to put its main research efforts into solar radio astronomy. The first radio telescope was completed in 1949 and started routine observations at 200 MHz. Since then, the group has placed its emphasis on observations at meter and decimeter wavelengths, and has constructed various kinds of radio telescopes and arrays operating at frequencies ranging from 60 to 800 MHz. In addition, radio telescopes operating at 3, 9.5 and 17 GMHz were constructed. In parallel with the observationally-based research, theoretical research on solar radio emission also was pursued. In this paper, we review the instrumental, observational and theoretical developments in solar radio astronomy at the Tokyo Astronomical Observatory in the important period from 1949 through to the 1960s.

  5. Astronomical Honeymoon Continues as X-Ray Observatory Marks First Anniversary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2000-08-01

    of the X-ray background, a glow throughout the universe whose source or sources are unknown. Astronomers are now pinpointing the various sources of the X-ray glow because Chandra has resolution eight times better than that of previous X-ray telescopes, and is able to detect sources more than 20 times fainter. "The Chandra team had to develop technologies and processes never tried before," said Tony Lavoie, Chandra program manager at Marshall. "One example is that we built and validated a measurement system to make sure the huge cylindrical mirrors of the telescope were ground correctly and polished to the right shape." The polishing effort resulted in an ultra-smooth surface for all eight of Chandra's mirrors. If the state of Colorado were as smooth as the surface of Chandra's mirrors, Pike's Peak would be less than an inch tall. "Chandra has experienced a great first year of discovery and we look forward to many more tantalizing science results as the mission continues," said Alan Bunner, program director, Structure and Evolution of the universe, NASA Headquarters, Washington, DC. Marshall manages the Chandra program for the Office of Space Science, NASA Headquarters. TRW Space and Electronics Group, Redondo Beach, CA, is the prime contractor. Using glass purchased from Schott Glaswerke, Mainz, Germany, the telescope's mirrors were built by Raytheon Optical Systems Inc., Danbury, CT, coated by Optical Coating Laboratory, Inc., Santa Rosa, CA, and assembled and inserted into the telescope portion of Chandra by Eastman Kodak Co., Rochester, NY. The scientific instruments were supplied by collaborations led by Pennsylvania State University, University Park; Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge, MA; Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge; and the Space Research Organization Netherlands, Utrecht. The Smithsonian's Chandra X-ray Center controls science and operations from Cambridge, working with astronomers around the globe to record the activities

  6. The real-time system for astronomical observations on the telescopes of the virtual observatory from ICAMER, SAO RAS, and BNO INR RAS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karpov, N.; Sergeev, A.; Tarady, V.; Petkov, V.; Balega, Yu.

    2003-04-01

    Three large astronomical observatories-- ICAMER, SAO and BNO JNR RAS- are located in the compact area of the Northern Caucasus. The observatories are equipped with a wide range of detectors for different wavelengths and energies. The unification and synchronization of data-flows from these telescopes will allow one to carry out astronomical observations at a new level and to realize a virtual observatory with new capabilities for space research. The analysis of the main principles of such observatory and the description of its infrastructure and data-flows are given below. The equipment for data exchange is already installed at the Terskol Observatory to provide a connection with BNO within the project of the virtual observatory.

  7. A Big Horizontal Solar Telescope of the Main Astronomical Observatory of the Ukrainian National Academy of Sciences in the caucasus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burlov-Vasil'Ev, K. A.; Vasil'Eva, I. E.; Gurtovenko, E. A.; Matveev, Yu. B.

    1996-10-01

    This paper presents the Big Horizonal Solar Telescope of the Main Astronomical Observatory of the Ukrainian National Academy of Sciences installed at the “Peak Terskol” high-altitude station near Elbrus (the main mirror diameter is 650 mm and the focal length is 17.5 m). The telescope is equipped with a five-camera spectrograph intended for photographic spectral observations of active regions in the solar atmosphere and photoelectric measurements of the solar spectra with high spectral and spatial resolution. The observation procedure is described, and the results of the quality analysis of the recorded spectra and of the early measurements are presented.

  8. Attempts to Establish an Astronomical Observatory in the Universidad de Los Andes in the Last 100 Years

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chalbaud Cardona, P.

    2009-05-01

    Since the late 19th century, the ULA have set themselves the goal of creating an astronomical observatory to increase the educational level of students and establish the foundations to develop systematic research in Astronomy. Throughout the 20th century several attempts have been made to reach an old dream of the institution. However, the difficulties faced by each of the proponents, in their respective historical periods, have delayed it. A brief analysis of the characteristics of each of the six projects found in the various institutional files, the teachers that promoted them, and some of the characteristics of each, is presented.

  9. Status, upgrades, and advances of RTS2: the open source astronomical observatory manager

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kubánek, Petr

    2016-07-01

    RTS2 is an open source observatory control system. Being developed from early 2000, it continue to receive new features in last two years. RTS2 is a modulat, network-based distributed control system, featuring telescope drivers with advanced tracking and pointing capabilities, fast camera drivers and high level modules for "business logic" of the observatory, connected to a SQL database. Running on all continents of the planet, it accumulated a lot to control parts or full observatory setups.

  10. Colloid Microthruster Feed System Development for Fine Pointing and Drag-Free Control of Multi-Year Astronomical Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ziemer, John; Mueller, J.; Spence, D.; Hruby, V.

    2014-01-01

    A new Colloid Microthruster feed system, including a propellant tank and redundant Microvalves, is being developed for fine pointing and drag-free operations of multi-year astronomical observatories under the PCOS SAT program. Almost all Gravitational Wave Observatory (GWO) concepts require microthrusters to maintain a drag-free environment for the inertial sensor instrument to meet the mission science objectives. The current state-of-the-art microthruster in the US is the Busek Colloid Micro-Newton Thruster (CMNT) originally developed under the New Millennium Program for the Space Technology 7 (ST7) and ESA's LISA Pathfinder (LPF) technology demonstration mission. The ST7 CMNT design includes a bellows propellant storage tank that is sized to provide up to 90 days of maximum thrust (30 µN). The new propellant tank is based on a blow-down, metal-diaphragm spherical tank design with enough capacity for a 5-year GWO mission. The new feed system will also include the third generation of Busek’s Microvalve, currently being developed under a NASA Phase II SBIR. The Microvalve is responsible for the picoliter per second control of the propellant from the tank to the thruster head, demanding parts with micron-level tolerances, critical alignments, and challenging acceptance test protocols. This microthruster system could also be considered for replacement of reaction wheels for slewing and fine pointing of other astronomical observatories, including Exo-Planet Observatory concepts. The goal of the PCOS SAT effort is to raise the new system to TRL 5 with performance and environmental testing within the next two years.

  11. Astronomical Observatory in Belgrade - activities and abstracts of papers 1980 - 1990.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Atanacković-Vukmanović, O.; Dimitrijević, M. S.

    1992-02-01

    Contents: 1. Bibliography of stellar catalogues and maps. 2. Development and history of astronomy. 3. Instruments and data reduction methods. 4. Astrometry. 5. Earth rotation. 6. Earth's atmosphere. 7. Planetary system. 8. Sun. 9. Stars. 10. Star clusters and galaxies. 11. Theoretical astrophysics and plasma physics. Appendix: Lectures held at the Astronomical Observatotry in the period 1980 - 1990.

  12. Algiers, La Plata, Nice: Three Prestigious and Emblematic Astronomical Observatories in the 1880s

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Le Guet Tully, Françoise; Davoigneau, Jean

    2012-09-01

    We shall describe the political and scientific contexts of the concomitant foundation on three continents of three observatories particularly well equipped instrument-wise: the ``ideal'' observatory erected in Nice by the sponsor Raphaël Bischoffsheim, the one developed in Algiers by the French State in a very good observational site, and the one in La Plata embedded in the urbanistic utopic project for the new capital of the Province of Buenos-Aires. We shall also explore their similarities and differences, especially as regards their instruments and their makers, their scientific aims and training of their staff.

  13. Progress on the New York State Observatory: a new 12-meter astronomical telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sebring, T.; O'Dea, C.; Baum, S.; Teran, J.; Loewen, N.; Stutzki, C.; Egerman, R.; Bonomi, G.

    2014-07-01

    Over the past two years, the New York Astronomical Corporation (NYAC), the business arm of the Astronomical Society of New York (ASNY), has continued planning and technical studies toward construction of a 12-meter class optical telescope for the use of all New York universities and research institutions. Four significant technical studies have been performed investigating design opportunities for the facility, the dome, the telescope optics, and the telescope mount. The studies were funded by NYAC and performed by companies who have provided these subsystems for large astronomical telescopes in the past. In each case, innovative and cost effective approaches were identified, developed, analyzed, and initial cost estimates developed. As a group, the studies show promise that this telescope could be built at historically low prices. As the project continues forward, NYAC intends to broaden the collaboration, pursue funding, to continue to develop the telescope and instrument designs, and to further define the scientific mission. The vision of a historically large telescope dedicated to all New York institutions continues to grow and find new adherents.

  14. Site Testing at the Mexican National Astronomical Observatory in San Pedro Martir

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Costero, R.; Echevarria, J.; Tapia, M.

    1996-05-01

    Measurements on the local seeing have been carried out during two and a half yea rs (March 29, 1992 to October 7, 1994), over a total of 378 nights. The Site Tes ting Telescope (STT) from the Steward Observatory yields a median seeing of 0.61 arcsec and a first quartile of 0.50 arcsec. Additional measurements with the Carnegie Monitor (CM), many of them done simultaneously with the STT, yield almost identical results. The Micro--Thermal Array (MTA), also from Steward Observatory, show that the seeing size decreases about 0.1 arcsec at 15 meters above the ground. The seeing does not show any dependence on wind velocity or direction, at least for wind velocities smaller than 40 kilometers per hour. We will present the details of these results. The participation of several persons in this project is here acknowledge, especially that of R. Cromwell and N. Wolf, from Steward Observatory, and S.E. Persson and D.M. Carr, from The Observatories of the Carnegie Institution of Washington.

  15. Past and Present of the Synoptic Observations of the Sun at the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanaoka, Y.; Solar Observatory of NAOJ

    2016-04-01

    The National Astronomical Observatory of Japan has a history of about 100 years of regular synoptic solar observations. It started with Ca K spectroheliographic and white-light imaging observations, and shortly afterward, the counting of sunspots was started. Current imaging observations are being carried out in the Hα line, the Ca K line, the G-band, and the green continuum. In addition, the NAOJ has a history of more than 30 years of magnetic field measurements, and now we are conducting full-Sun spectropolarimetry observations. Most of the historical photographic and hand-drawn data have been digitized and are now open at our web site as well as recently obtained data. Here we introduce our data to promote the collaboration in the long-term solar activity study.

  16. Sensor system development for the WSO-UV (World Space Observatory-Ultraviolet) space-based astronomical telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hayes-Thakore, Chris; Spark, Stephen; Pool, Peter; Walker, Andrew; Clapp, Matthew; Waltham, Nick; Shugarov, Andrey

    2015-10-01

    As part of a strategy to provide increasingly complex systems to customers, e2v is currently developing the sensor solution for focal plane array for the WSO-UV (World Space Observatory - Ultraviolet) programme, a Russian led 170 cm space astronomical telescope. This is a fully integrated sensor system for the detection of UV light across 3 channels: 2 high resolution spectrometers covering wavelengths of 115 - 176 nm and 174 - 310 nm and a Long-Slit Spectrometer covering 115 nm - 310 nm. This paper will describe the systematic approach and technical solution that has been developed based on e2v's long heritage, CCD experience and expertise. It will show how this approach is consistent with the key performance requirements and the overall environment requirements that the delivered system will experience through ground test, integration, storage and flight.

  17. Research in space physics at the University of Iowa. [astronomical observatories, spaceborne astronomy, satellite observation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vanallen, J. A.

    1974-01-01

    Various research projects in space physics are summarized. Emphasis is placed on: (1) the study of energetic particles in outer space and their relationships to electric, magnetic, and electromagnetic fields associated with the earth, the sun, the moon, the planets, and interplanetary medium; (2) observational work on satellites of the earth and the moon, and planetary and interplanetary spacecraft; (3) phenomenological analysis and interpretation; (4) observational work by ground based radio-astronomical and optical techniques; and (5) theoretical problems in plasma physics. Specific fields of current investigations are summarized.

  18. Software for autonomous astronomical observatories: challenges and opportunities in the age of big data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sybilski, Piotr W.; Pawłaszek, Rafał; Kozłowski, Stanisław K.; Konacki, Maciej; Ratajczak, Milena; Hełminiak, Krzysztof G.

    2014-07-01

    We present the software solution developed for a network of autonomous telescopes, deployed and tested in Solaris Project. The software aims to fulfil the contemporary needs of distributed autonomous observatories housing medium sized telescopes: ergonomics, availability, security and reusability. The datafication of such facilities seems inevitable and we give a preliminary study of the challenges and opportunities waiting for software developers. Project Solaris is a global network of four 0.5 m autonomous telescopes conducting a survey of eclipsing binaries in the Southern Hemisphere. The Project's goal is to detect and characterise circumbinary planets using the eclipse timing method. The observatories are located on three continents, and the headquarters coordinating and monitoring the network is in Poland. All four are operational as of December 2013.

  19. Report On Fiducial Points At The Space Geodesy Based Cagliari Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Banni, A.; Buffa, F.; Falchi, E.; Sanna, G.

    At the present time two research groups are engaged to space-geodesy activities in Sardinia: a staff belonging to the Stazione Astronomica of Cagliari (SAC) and the To- pography Section of the Dipartimento di Ingegneria Strutturale (DIST) of the Cagliari University. The two groups have a share in international campaigns and services. The local structure, consists of permanent stations of satellite observation both on radio and laser techniques. Particularly in the Cagliari Observatory a Satellite Laser Ranging system runs with nearly daily, low, medium and high orbit satellite tracking capability (e. g. Topex, Ajisai, Lageos1/2, Glonass); up to this time the Cagliari laser station has contributed towards the following international campaigns/organizations. Besides in the Observatory's site a fixed GPS system, belonging the Italian Space Agency GPS- Network and to the IGS-Network; and a GPS+GLONASS system, acquired by DIST and belonging to the IGLOS are installed and managed. All the above stations are furnished with meteorological sensors with RINEX format data dissemination avail- ability. Moreover a new 64 meters dish radio telescope (Sardinian Radio Telescope), geodetic VLBI equipped, is under construction not long away from the Observatory. The poster fully shows the facilities and furnishes a complete report on the mark- ers eccentricities, allowing co-location of the different space techniques operating in Sardinia.

  20. An innovative alt-alt telescope for small observatories and amateur astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riva, M.; Basso, S.; Canestrari, R.; Conconi, P.; Fugazza, D.; Ghigo, M.; Landoni, M.; Pareschi, G.; Spanó, P.; Tomelleri, R.; Zerbi, F. M.

    2012-09-01

    This paper want to show an innovative amateur oriented telescope with an unconventional alt-alt conguration. The goal is to make a telescope with good optical quality reducing production costs by adopting a gimbal based mounting to develop an alt-alt conguration suitable for a telescope. Reduce costs while preserving the optical quality is a necessary condition to allow small groups of amateur astronomers, schools and cultural clubs, with reduced economic resources, to acquire an astronomical instrument that encourages learning and advancing astrophysical knowledge. This unconventional mechanism for the realization of a telescope alt-alt provides signicant advantages. The traditional rotary motors coupled with expensive precision bearings are replaced with two simple linear actuators coupled to a properly preloaded gimbal joint and the cell becomes the primary structure of the telescope. A second advantage would be secured by mechanical simplicity evident in the easy portability of the instrument. The frame alt-alt has some limitations on the horizon pointing but does not show the zenith blind spot of the alt-az mount. A dedicated alt-alt pointing and tracking model is under development to be compatible with commercial telescope softwares and with the proposed new mounting.

  1. Remote Telescope System for Science Education and Small-scale Researches at Bosscha Observatory, Indonesia and at Gunma Astronomical Observatory, Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malasan, H. L.; Kurata, T.; Kurabayashi, T.; Taguchi, H.; Indradjaja, B.; Prasetyono, G. I.; Kinugasa, K.

    2006-08-01

    This talk presents the concept of The Gunma Astronomical Observatory-Instititute of Technology Bandung Remote Telescope System (hereafter the GAO-ITB RTS) that has been commisioned in March, 2004. GAO-ITB RTS consists of two 21 cm Schmidt-Cassegrain (f/D=10.0) telescopes, equatorially mounted and supported by Takahashi EM-200 (drive) + GO TO System Temma 2 (control system) connected to a PC through RS 232 C cable. The ITB-side telescope will be situated inside a lightweight sliding roof on the roof of the visitor center at Bosscha Observatory in Lembang. The main software is the Telescope Tracer 98 working under Windows XP that enables chart-based pointing for epoch 2000 or at the observing time, hand-set emulator, and equipped with a database containing SAO, variable star, double star (V ≤ 9.5 mag); Deep sky objects: Messier (110), NGC (7840), IC (5382); and Solar system. Furthermore, with the support of the software TelAgent, web-based remote control can be conducted under Internet Explorer (Ver 5.5 or later). Assigning a static IP address for the mounting system is indispensable. The remote system has been set up to fulfill three basic functions, i.e. command sending through TelAgent, image streaming using web server, and teleconferencing. To support the whole activity, a data communication rate greater than 64 Kbps is needed. The system is currently furnished with TGV-M (811(H)´508(V) pixels, 8.4μm(H) ´9.8 μm(V) @ pixel) camera. Although primarily designed for public distant-learning, the potential of GAO-ITB RTS for high-time resolution photometric observation, such as occultation, and patrol-type observation have been identified and will be explored.

  2. George C. Comstock: Wisconsin Astronomer, Observatory Director, Graduate School Dean, and AAS Officer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Osterbrock, D. E.

    1996-05-01

    George C. Comstock, the third director of Washburn Observatory, had a long and interesting career at Wisconsin. Born in Madison, he did his undergraduate work at Michigan under James Watson. From him Comstock learned the classical astronomy of stellar positions and celestial mechanics. He had one year of graduate work at Michigan before going to Madison as Watson's assistant in 1880, and remained after the latter's death as E.S. Holden's assistant. At Wisconsin, Comstock also studied law at the UW Law School in his ``spare time", to have an alternate career path. He was admitted to the bar in 1883 but never practiced. From 1885-7 he was on the Ohio State faculty with a summer working at Lick Observatory; then in 1887 became associate director back at Washburn Observatory. Two years later he succeeded to the full directorship, and kept the post until he retired in 1922 at the age of 67. All Comstock's research was in positional astronomy, and he considered his most important work to be the measurement of stellar aberration and atmospheric refraction. He also measured double stars with the 15-inch Washburn refractor. His main duty at UW was teaching, mostly ``practical astronomy" for civil engineering students. Comstock wrote several text books on astronomy, surveying, and least squares. He was the first head of the UW Graduate School, set up by President Charles R. Van Hise in 1904. Comstock was a highly effective administrator, and did much to build up research at UW. His own most successful students were Sidney D. Townley, Joel Stebbins, and Sebastian Albrecht. Because of his legal training, Comstock was involved as an officer in many scientific societies. He was one of the organizers of the AAS, its first secretary, and later its vice president, then president. He retired in 1922, and was succeeded by Stebbins, whom he helped to bring back to Madison from Illinois. After his retirement, Comstock lived in Beloit until his death in 1934.

  3. First observations of the Fabra-ROA telescope at the Montsec Astronomical observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muiños, J. L.; Fors, O.; Montojo, F. J.; Núñez, J.; Voss, H.; Boloix, J.; Baena, R.; López Morcillo, R.; Merino, M.

    The Baker-Nunn Cameras (BNCs) were produced by the Smithsonian Institution during the late 50's as an optical tracking system for artificial satellites. One of those telescopes was installed at the Real Instituto Observatorio de la Armada (ROA) in San Fernando (Spain) and managed jointly between these two institutions until 1979, when the Smithsonian transferred the instrument to the ROA. In 2000, due to its excellent mechanical and optical original design, the Observatori Fabra of the Reial Academia de Ciències Arts de Barcelona (RACAB) and the ROA agreed to refurbish the BNC and to install this new facility in a new observatory at 1570 m altitude founded in Catalonia, in the NE of Spain. After the refurbishment period and first test at the ROA the now called Telescope Fabra-ROA Montsec (TFRM) was moved to the Observatori Astronòmic del Montsec (OAdM) on 2010 September. Since then, it is in commissioning period to test both observing modes: remote and robotic. In this presentation we shall show the results of some observational campaigns carried out with the TFRM while it was in commissioning. Mainly the instrument has participated, as an informal partner, in the CO-VI Satellite Tracking Campaign of the ESA's Space Situational Awareness (SSA). These campaigns are experimental observations of Earth orbit objects using existing European telescopes and radars to determine how accurately they can work together. Also some transiting observations of known exoplanets have been conducted. More information in to http://www.am.ub.es/bnc/

  4. VOStat: A Virtual Observatory Web Service for Statistical Analysis of Astronomical Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feigelson, Eric; Chakraborty, A.; Babu, G.

    2013-01-01

    VOStat (http://vostat.org), is a VO-compliant Web service giving astronomers access to a suite of statistical procedures in a user-friendly Web environment. It uses R (http://www.r-project.org), the largest public domain statistical software environment with >4000 add-on packages. Data input is by user upload, URL, or SAMP interaction with other VO tools. Outputs include plots, tabular results and R scripts. VOStat implements ~60 statistical functions, only a tiny portion of the full R capabilities. These include density estimation (smoothing), hypothesis tests, regression (linear, local, quantile, robust), multivariate analysis (regression, principal components, hierarchical clustering, normal mixture models), spatial analysis (autocorrelation, k-NN, Riley's K, Voronoi tests), directional data, survival analysis (Kaplan-Meier estimator, two-sample tests, Lynden-Bell-Woodroofe estimator), and time series analysis (autocorrelation, autoregressive models, periodogram).

  5. Austrian-Hungarian Astronomical Observatories Run by the Society of Jesus at the Time of the 18th Century Venus Transits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Posch, Thomas; Aspaas, Per Pippin; Bazso, Akos; Mueller, Isolde

    2013-05-01

    The Venus transit in June 1761 was the first one to be observed on a truly international scale: almost 250 astronomers followed this rare celestial event (e.g. Wulff 2012, p. 115), and at least 130 published successful observations of it (Aspaas 2012, p. 423). The present paper deals with the astronomical observatories built by the Society of Jesus in its eighteenth century "Provincia Austriae", at which the 1761 transit could be observed. Five Jesuit observatories are being presented in this context: three in today's Austria, namely, two in Vienna and one in Graz; one in Trnava in today's Slovakia and one in Cluj in today's Romania. Thereafter, we briefly examine which of these observatories submitted any Venus transit observations for publication in the appendix to Maximilian Hell's "Ephemerides astronomicae ad meridianum Vindobonensem" for the year 1762.

  6. The simulation of residual optical aberrations of the 8-inch Clark objective of the astronomical observatory in Ondřejov

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rail, Zdeněk.; Pintr, Pavel; Šrajer, Bohdan

    2016-11-01

    The 8-inch Clark objective lens of the Astronomical Institute of the Czech Academy of Sciences is probably the oldest doublet used for professional astronomical observation in the Czech Republic. Its optical imaging performance has become legendary among several generations of professional astronomers. The lens was manufactured by Alvan Clark in Cambridge, Massachusetts at the end of the 1850s. The 8-inch refractor functioned as the main telescope of the astronomical observatory in Ondřejov in the first half of the twentieth century. The objective has been cleaned and restored twice in the TOPTEC Centre in Turnov. We had the opportunity to measure the optical parameters of the doublet during its time in Turnov and we subsequently evaluated its residual aberrations. This paper is a record of the results of the optical simulations.

  7. Astronomical Images and Data Mining in the International Virtual Observatory Context

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pasian, F.; Brescia, M.; Longo, G.

    2012-12-01

    In the past ten years, the concept of Virtual Observatory (VObs) has increasingly gained importance in the domain of astrophysics, as a way of seamlessly accessing data in different wavelength domains stored in digital archives. There are many reasons why the VObs is useful for the development of science: to monitor time variability of phenomena, to compare phenomena in different bands, to increase return for investment (by fostering data re-use for scientific, educational and outreach purposes), to perform statistical analysis and mining on large quantities of data. The International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA) has paved the way for the VObs to become a really useful tool for the scientific community, by promoting standards, by defining data interoperability methods, by fostering the needed coordination among data providers. But the VObs is more than just archives and standards: it is also infrastructure, basic software tools, advanced applications, evolution of methods and techniques, cross-fertilization with other communities. Discovering information in wide-field images and mining large archives are key items towards the use of the VObs as a tool for developing science. Data mining, or knowledge discovery in databases, while being the main methodology to extract the scientific information contained in Massive Data Sets (MDS), needs to tackle crucial problems since it has to orchestrate complex challenges posed by transparent access to different computing environments, scalability of algorithms, reusability of resources. To achieve a leap forward for the progress of astrophysics in the data avalanche era, the community needs to implement an infrastructure capable of performing data access, processing and mining in a distributed but integrated context.

  8. Observations of extrasolar planet transits with the automated telescopes of the Pulkovo Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sokov, E. N.; Vereshchagina, I. A.; Gnedin, Yu. N.; Devyatkin, A. V.; Gorshanov, D. L.; Slesarenko, V. Yu.; Ivanov, A. V.; Naumov, K. N.; Zinov'ev, S. V.; Bekhteva, A. S.; Romas, E. S.; Karashevich, S. V.; Kupriyanov, V. V.

    2012-03-01

    Exoplanet observations have been performed on the automated Pulkovo Observatory telescopes. We have obtained 33 transit light curves for 16 known exoplanets and six transit observations for three exoplanet candidates discovered by the Kepler telescope. Based on our observations, we have reliably confirmed the existence of an exoplanet with an extremely large radius, R pl = 1.83 ± 0.16 R Jup, in the system KOI 256 and detected a strong deviation of its orbital revolution from the theoretically predicted one. During the transit of the exoplanet WASP-12b across the stellar disk, we detected bursts that could be caused by the planet transit across spots on the star or by the presence of a satellite around this exoplanet. We detected possible periodic variations in the duration of the exoplanet transit across the stellar disk with time for HAT-P-12b that could be caused by variations in orbital inclination. The transit duration and depth, the central transit time, and the radius and orbital inclination of the planet have been estimated. The equilibrium temperature and albedo have been estimated for several exoplanets.

  9. Ukpik: testbed for a miniaturized robotic astronomical observatory on a high Arctic mountain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steinbring, Eric; Leckie, Brian; Hardy, Tim; Caputa, Kris; Fletcher, Murray

    2012-09-01

    Mountains along the northwestern coast of Ellesmere Island, Canada, possess the highest peaks nearest the Pole. This geography, combined with an atmospheric thermal inversion restricted to below ~1000 m during much of the long arctic night, provides excellent opportunities for uninterrupted cloud-free astronomy - provided the challenges of these incredibly remote locations can be overcome. We present a miniaturized robotic observatory for deployment on a High Arctic mountaintop. This system tested the operability of precise optical instruments during winter, and the logistics of installation and maintenance during summer. It is called Ukpik after the Inuktitut name for the snowy owl, and was deployed at two sites accessible only by helicopter, each north of 82 degrees latitude; one on rock at 1100 m elevation and another on a glacier at 1600 m. The instrument suite included at first an all-sky-viewing camera, with the later addition of a small telescope to monitor Polaris, both protected by a retractable weather-proof enclosure. Expanding this to include a narrow-field drift-scanning camera for studying extra-solar planet transits was also investigated, but not implemented. An unique restriction was that all had to be run on batteries recharged primarily by a wind turbine. Supplementary power came from a methanol fuel-cell electrical generator. Communications were via the Iridium satellite network. The system design, and lessons learned from three years of operation are discussed, along with prospects for time-domain astronomy from isolated, high-elevation polar mountaintops.

  10. Web Services for Astronomical Databases: Connecting AIPS++ to the Virtual Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Douthit, M. C.

    2002-12-01

    In the year 2010, the NRAO will be operating four of the world's most powerful radio telescopes: GBT, EVLA, VLBA, and ALMA (with international partnership). Multi-Terabyte data sets will quickly accumulate with a rate of twenty-five to fifty Megabytes of data per second generated by ALMA and EVLA each. It will be imperative for scientists to possess software capable of automated data reduction, image synthesis, and archiving. With the evolution of AIPS++ and the recently developed concepts of the image pipeline, the participation of the NRAO in the virtual observatories of the future is now on the horizon giving birth to the need for fast archive access and web service development in AIPS++. When the software package began over 10 years ago, it was not designed for data transfer via the web. In response to the demands of the NVO, we have designed and implemented an application layer that will allow our system to communicate with others. Sponsored by the NRAO and California State University, San Marcos.

  11. The preparation of the measurements at the PDS at the Padova Observatory: Report on an experience with the development of an astronomical data base environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Benacchio, L.

    1984-01-01

    Some software facilities used mainly for information retrieval and analysis at the Padova-Asiago Observatory are discussed. These facilities help guest and resident astronomers to make easier the preparation of plate measurements. The problems connected with the creation, use and management of a data base in a scientific (astronomical) environment are reviewed on the basis of the experience gathered during the last three years. The development plan of the user session environment and its possible applications in a computer network are briefly sketched.

  12. The preparation of the measurements at the PDS at the Padova Observatory: Report on an experience with the development of an astronomical data base environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Benacchio, L.

    1984-01-01

    Some software facilities used mainly for information retrieval and analysis at the Padova-Asiago Observatory are discussed. These facilities help guest and resident astronomers to make easier the preparation of plate measurements. The problems connected with the creation, use and management of a data base in a scientific (astronomical) environment are reviewed on the basis of the experience gathered during the last three years. The development plan of the user session environment and its possible applications in a computer network are briefly sketched.

  13. Walter Baade, Dynamical Astronomer at Goettingen, Hamburg, Mount Wilson, and Palomar Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Osterbrock, D. E.

    2002-09-01

    Walter Baade, famous for his astrophysical discoveries, also made many contributions in dynamical astronomy. His thesis at Goettingen University on the spectroscopic orbit of β Lyrae was based on spectrograms his teacher, Johannes Hartmann, had taken at Potsdam years earlier. Immediately on receiving his Ph.D. in 1919, Baade joined the Hamburg Bergedorf Observatory staff, and soon was the sole observer with its 1-m reflector, the largest telescope in Europe. Under its director, Richard Schorr, Baade's main job at first was to obtain direct plates of asteroids and comets for positional measurements. As an incidental part of this observing he discovered many asteroids, eight of which were eventually named, including 966 Muschi (his wife's nickname), 944 Hidalgo, with large orbital semi-major axis, eccentricity, and inclination, and 1036 Ganymed, whose orbit extends inside that of Mars. Baade also discovered a new comet, 1922 II. During the close approach of Eros in 1930 Baade measured its period of light variation, its color, and its mean magnitude. After Pluto was discovered in 1930 he measured its position assiduously, following it as far from opposition as he could. In 1931 Baade moved to Mount Wilson, where he concentrated almost entirely on globular-cluster, supernova, and galaxy research. He saw many asteroid trails on his long exposures but did not report them except for one, 7448 (still not named), which showed a very long trail on a 3-hr exposure of the Crab nebula. At Palomar, using the 48-in Schmidt soon after it went into operation, he dicovered and reported 1566 Icarus, with a very small perihelion distance, and later his second comet, 1955 VI.

  14. TTL robotic telescopes and Robonet: new possibilities for robotic astronomical observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moss, C.

    2003-05-01

    Five TTL (Telescope Technologies Limited, Liverpool J.M. University, U.K.) telescopes, ranging in size from 2m to 2.4m are currently being manufactured and installed at sites worldwide (Hawaii; La Palma; India; China; Australia). These telescopes have been designed to work robotically, i.e. the telescopes will not be supervised either locally or remotely during routine observations. Observation requests from many observers authorised by multiple allocation committees are stored in the telescope database. Actual observations are scheduled using a version of a `dispatch' scheduler which decides in real time the best observation to perform next on the basis of the current telescope state and observing conditions, subject to fairness and efficiency criteria. In this way observations can be matched to local conditions, and rapid response to targets of opportunity is possible. The robotic software includes telescope run-up and run-down, focussing tests, monitoring of observing conditions for optimum scheduling of observations, automated observation of photometric standards and pipeline data reduction. The developing global network of TTL telescopes (`Robonet') is uniquely well suited to a vast range of scientific programs in time domain astrophysics, such as the discovery of Earth-size planets using gravitational lensing, astro-tomography with a resolution of one millionth of an arc second, and continuous 24-hour monitoring of variable objects. Also, uniquely, telescope time may be readily `traded' on the network to enable a single telescope to become effectively a global distributed Observatory, facilitating observations in both northern and southern hemispheres and on a much wider set of instrumentation than is easily available for a single telescope.

  15. The Astronomical Observatory of the Autonomous Region of the Aosta Valley. A professional research centre in the Italian Alps

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Calcidese, P.; Bernagozzi, A.; Bertolini, E.; Carbognani, A.; Damasso, M.; Pellissier, P.; Recaldini, P.; Soldi, M.; Toso, G.

    The Astronomical Observatory of the Autonomous Region of the Aosta Valley (OAVdA), in the Alps at the border with France and Switzerland, is located in the Saint-Barthélemy Valley at 1675 m a.s.l. and 16 km from the town of Nus (AO). Managed by the Fondazione Clément Fillietroz-ONLUS with funding from local administrations, the OAVdA opened in 2003. For the first years its initiatives were focused on public outreach & education. Since 2006 the main activity has been scientific research thanks to an official agreement of cooperation established with the italian National Institute for Astrophysics (INAF). The OAVdA researchers, with Research Grants from the European Social Fund (EU-ESF), have been authors and/or coauthors of several papers on international journals. Here we present in detail the scientific projects developed at the OAVdA and describe some public outreach & education initiatives proposed at the OAVdA and the Planetarium of Lignan, also managed by the Fondazione Clément Fillietroz-ONLUS since 2009.

  16. SpUpNIC (Spectrograph Upgrade: Newly Improved Cassegrain) on the South African Astronomical Observatory's 74-inch telescope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crause, Lisa A.; Carter, Dave; Daniels, Alroy; Evans, Geoff; Fourie, Piet; Gilbank, David; Hendricks, Malcolm; Koorts, Willie; Lategan, Deon; Loubser, Egan; Mouries, Sharon; O'Connor, James E.; O'Donoghue, Darragh E.; Potter, Stephen; Sass, Craig; Sickafoose, Amanda A.; Stoffels, John; Swanevelder, Pieter; Titus, Keegan; van Gend, Carel; Visser, Martin; Worters, Hannah L.

    2016-08-01

    SpUpNIC (Spectrograph Upgrade: Newly Improved Cassegrain) is the extensively upgraded Cassegrain Spectrograph on the South African Astronomical Observatory's 74-inch (1.9-m) telescope. The inverse-Cassegrain collimator mirrors and woefully inefficient Maksutov-Cassegrain camera optics have been replaced, along with the CCD and SDSU controller. All moving mechanisms are now governed by a programmable logic controller, allowing remote configuration of the instrument via an intuitive new graphical user interface. The new collimator produces a larger beam to match the optically faster Folded-Schmidt camera design and nine surface-relief diffraction gratings offer various wavelength ranges and resolutions across the optical domain. The new camera optics (a fused silica Schmidt plate, a slotted fold flat and a spherically figured primary mirror, both Zerodur, and a fused silica field-flattener lens forming the cryostat window) reduce the camera's central obscuration to increase the instrument throughput. The physically larger and more sensitive CCD extends the available wavelength range; weak arc lines are now detectable down to 325 nm and the red end extends beyond one micron. A rear-of-slit viewing camera has streamlined the observing process by enabling accurate target placement on the slit and facilitating telescope focus optimisation. An interactive quick-look data reduction tool further enhances the user-friendliness of SpUpNI

  17. High Resolution Near-Infrared Spectroscopy of Comet C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) using WINERED at Koyama Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kawakita, Hideyo; Shinnaka, Yoshiharu; Ogawa, Sayuri; Kobayashi, Hitomi; Kondo, Sohei; Nakanishi, Kenshi; Kawanishi, Takafumi; Nakaoka, Tetsuya; Otsubo, Shogo; Kinoshita, Masaomi; Ikeda, Yuji; Yamamoto, Ryo; Izumi, Natsuko; Fukue, Kei; Hamano, Satoshi; Yasui, Chikako; Mito, Hiroyuki; Matsunaga, Noriyuki; Kobayashi, Naoto

    2014-11-01

    High resolution near-infrared spectroscopic observations of comet C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) using the WINERED ( 3x10^4) spectrometer on the 1.3-m Araki telescope at Koyama Astronomical Observatory were carried out on UT 2013 November 30. The comet was at 0.91 AU from the Sun and 0.49 AU from the Earth at the observations. This comet was considered to originate in the Oort cloud and became bright in visible from October to December 2013. The newly developed instrument, WINERED, was a cross-dispersed Echelle spectrometer that can cover the wavelength range from 0.9 to 1.3 microns simultaneously. Many emission lines were recorded in the high signal-to-noise ratio spectra of comet Lovejoy. We report the line assignment of the detected emission lines and present our preliminary analysis for CN Red-band system.This research program is supported by the MEXT --- Supported Program for the Strategic Research Foundation at Private Universities, 2014 - 2018.

  18. The possible astronomical function of the El Molle stone circle at the ESO Observatory La Silla. II: The updated measurement campaign

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bernardi, Gabriella; Vecchiato, Alberto; Bucciarelli, Beatrice

    2014-07-01

    This paper reviews and updates the accounts of a previous article discussing the possible astronomical significance of a peculiar, man-made circular stone structure, located close to the European Southern Observatory in La Silla, Chile, and attributed to the El Molle culture. Thanks to further, higher-accuracy measurements in situ, we can confirm some of the original hypotheses and dismiss others, upholding the main tenets of the original work.

  19. Four Big-Telescope Planetary Astronomers of the 1920's at Mount Wilson, Yerkes, and Lick Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Osterbrock, D. E.

    2002-12-01

    Contrary to current mythology, many professional astronomers tried to do planetary research before World War II, as Ronald Doel and I have previously emphasized. Their difficulty was that once the known planets had been studied with the biggest and best telescopes, spectrographs, and radiometers there was little more they could do until some new instrumental development came along, and these were rare in those years. Two astronomers who observed planets in the 1920's were Frank Ross, of the Yerkes Observatory faculty, with the Mount Wilson 60- and 100-inch telescopes, and William H. Wright, at Lick, with its 36-inch Crossley reflector, which he considered a big telescope. Both were keenly interested in photographic emulsions (Ross had been a research physicist at the Eastman Kodak Laboratory), and when fast new panchromatic films and plates became available in the 1920's they quickly applied them to photographing the planets. Robert J. Trumpler, also at Lick, used its 36-inch refractor in a combination of photographic (in the yellow and red spectral regions) and visual observing to map and describe Martian surface features. All three of them began planetary observing at the close opposition of Mars in 1924; they were all mainline scientists who ultimately were elected to the National Academy of Sciences. All three of them were doing descriptive work, seeing what was there, and none of them had any theoretical ideas to check or disprove. Francis G. Pease, more of a telescope designer and engineer at Mount Wilson, also used its 60- and 100-inch reflectors, chiefly to take photographs of the planets for illustrations in books and magazines. They all used fine-grain photographic plates, but seeing was a problem they could not overcome. Examples of their planetary photographs, papers, and letters will be posted. Ross and Trumpler dropped out of planetary astronomy after 1928, but Wright and Pease continued in it for many years. An interesting sidelight is that Gerard P

  20. Positional observations of small solar system bodies with the SBG telescope at the Astronomical Observatory of the Ural Federal University

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaiser, G. T.; Wiebe, Yu. Z.

    2017-05-01

    The telescope SBG ( D = 0.42 m, F = 0.76 m) at the Kourovka Astronomical Observatory of the Ural Federal University has undergone an upgrade in 2005-2006. A CCD camera (Apogee Alta U32) and a new drive system were installed, and a new system for telescope and observation control was implemented. This upgrade required verifying the astrometric quality of the telescope. The data processing approaches tested when searching for the optimum CCD image processing technique combined TYCHO2 and UCAC2 catalogues with various reduction models and methods for choosing reference stars. Lorentzian and Moffat profiles were used in the measurement of pixel coordinates. It was demonstrated that the accuracy of SBG observations of main-belt asteroids with precisely determined orbits depends on their brightness and varies from 0.06" (11.5 m ) to 0.4" (18.5 m ). Regular SBG observations of comets and asteroids (mostly near-Earth and potentially hazardous ones) have been performed since 2007. Coordinates of 8515 positions of 720 asteroids and more than 1000 positions of 40 comets were obtained. The RMS deviations of observed coordinates from their calculated values are typically smaller than 1": the average deviations for asteroids are 0.33" (in right ascension) and 0.34" (in declination); the corresponding values for comets are 0.37" (in α) and 0.38" (in δ). The results of observations are sent to the Minor Planet Center and are used to determine orbits more accurately and solve other fundamental and applied problems.

  1. Orbiting Astronomical Observatory (OAO)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murdin, P.

    2000-11-01

    Series of four NASA satellites. No data were returned from OAO-1 or OAO-B. The second satellite (OAO-2) operated for four years. It carried two experiments which surveyed the sky at ultraviolet wavelengths. Most successful was COPERNICUS (OAO-3), which was launched in August 1972 and operated for nine years....

  2. Development and manufacturing of panoramic Stokes polarimeter using the polarization films in the Main Astronomical Observatory of NAS of Ukraine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vidmachenko, A. P.; Ivanov, Yu. S.; Syniavskyi, I. I.; Sergeev, A. V.

    2015-08-01

    In the Main Astronomical Observatory of NAS of Ukraine is proposed and implemented the concept of the imaging Stokes polarimeter [1-5]. This device allows carrying out measurements of the four Stokes vector components at the same time, in a wide field, and without any restrictions on the relative aperture of the optical system. Its scheme is developed so that only by turning wheel with replaceable elements, photopolarimeter could be transformed into a low resolution spectropolarimeter. The device has four film's polarizers with positional angles 0°, 45°, 90°, 135°. The device uses a system of special deflecting prisms in each channel. These prisms were achromatizing in the spectral range of 420-850 nm [2], the distortion of the polarimeter optical system is less than 0.65%. In manufacturing version of spectropolarimeter provided for the possibility of using working on passing the diffraction grating with a frequency up to 100 lines/mm. Has begun the laboratory testing of instrument. References. 1. Sinyavskii I.I., Ivanov Yu. S., Vidmachenko Anatoliy P., Karpov N.V. Panoramic Stokes-polarimeter // Ecological bulettin of research centers of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation. - 2013. - V. 3, No 4. - P. 123-127. 2. Sinyavskii I. I., Ivanov Yu. S., Vil'machenko A. P. Concept of the construction, of the optical setup of a panoramic Stokes polarimeter for small telescopes // Journal of Optical Technology. - 2013. - V. 80, Issue 9. - P. 545-548. 3. Vidmachenko A. P., Ivanov Yu. S., Morozhenko A. V., Nevodovsky E. P., Syniavskyi I. I., Sosonkin M. G. Spectropolarimeter of ground-based accompanying for the space experiment "Planetary Monitoring" // Kosmichna Nauka i Tekhnologiya. - 2007. - V. 13, No. 1, p. 63 - 70. 4. Yatskiv Ya. S., Vidmachenko A. P., Morozhenko A. V., Sosonkin M. G., Ivanov Yu. S., Syniavskyi I. I. Spectropolarimetric device for overatmospheric investigations of Solar System bodies // Kosmichna Nauka i Tekhnologiya. - 2008. - V. 14, No. 2. - P. 56

  3. The Experience at the University of Puerto Rico with ``The Sky in Your Hands'' and ``The Tactile Moon Project'' from the Astronomical Observatory University of Valencia (Spain)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Villamizar, G. M. I.; Pantoja, C. A.; Lebrón Santos, M. E.; Ortiz-Gil, A.

    2013-04-01

    This poster describes the collaboration that was originated from the activities of the “International Year of Astronomy 2009” (IYA2009). Beyond 2009 we have continued the collaboration with the outreach specialists from Spain. Two projects have followed, the first was the presentation of the Planetarium Show “The Sky in Your Hands” at the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus during 2012. The second project is our participation in the design and development of the 3D Tactile Moon Project for the Blind from the Astronomical Observatory of the University of Valencia, Spain.

  4. Armenian Astronomical Heritage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, A. M.

    2014-10-01

    A review is given on the Armenian Astronomical Heritage from ancient times to nowadays. Armenian ancient astronomy includes the division of the skies into constellations, rock art, ancient Armenian calendar, ancient observatories (such as Metsamor and Karahunge), records of astronomical events (such as Halley's Comet recorded on Tigranes the Great's coin), ancient names of celestial bodies (planets, stars, constellations), etc. The Medieval Armenian astronomy includes two more calendars, Anania Shirakatsi's scientific heritage, the record of 1054 Supernova, sky maps by Luca Vanandetsi and Mkhitar Sebastatsi, etc. Modern Armenian astronomical heritage first of all consists of the famous Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory founded in 1946 by Viktor Ambartsumian, as well as Yerevan Astronomical Observatory, Armenian Astronomical Society, Armenian Virtual Observatory, Yerevan State University Department of Astrophysics, Astrofizika journal, and brilliant young students who systematically win high positions at International Astronomical Olympiads.

  5. Astronomical Institute of Athens

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murdin, P.

    2000-11-01

    The Astronomical Institute of Athens is the oldest research institute of modern Greece (it faces the Parthenon). The Astronomical Institute (AI) of the National Observatory of Athens (NOA) started its observational projects in 1847. The modern computer and research center are housed at the Penteli Astronomical Station with major projects and international collaborations focused on extragalactic ...

  6. Book review: "Astronomical almanac", 2016, vol. 62. Main Astronomical Observatory of National Academy of Science of Ukraine, Kiev. ISBN 978-966-02-7765-6,2015, 286 p.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vidmachenko, A. P.

    2015-12-01

    The first part of the almanac gives the 2016 calendar, description of calendar systems used by various peoples in the world, ephemerides for the Sun, the Moon, and planets, moments of rising and setting for the Sun and the Moon, planetary configurations, the visibility of planets and Jupiter's satellites on the sky, some data on variable stars, comets, occultations of stars by the Moon and asteroids, meteor showers, eclipses, and other celestial phenomena. The second part informs us on the current state of investigations in some fields of astronomy, and gives some memorable dates in history of astronomy and cosmonautics. The almanac may be used as a handbook by specialists in astronomy and related sciences, by school teachers, students, pupils, amateur astronomers etc.

  7. Blind Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hockey, Thomas A.

    2011-01-01

    The phrase "blind astronomer” is used as an allegorical oxymoron. However, there were and are blind astronomers. What of famous blind astronomers? First, it must be stated that these astronomers were not martyrs to their craft. It is a myth that astronomers blind themselves by observing the Sun. As early as France's William of Saint-Cloud (circa 1290) astronomers knew that staring at the Sun was ill-advised and avoided it. Galileo Galilei did not invent the astronomical telescope and then proceed to blind himself with one. Galileo observed the Sun near sunrise and sunset or through projection. More than two decades later he became blind, as many septuagenarians do, unrelated to their profession. Even Isaac Newton temporarily blinded himself, staring at the reflection of the Sun when he was a twentysomething. But permanent Sun-induced blindness? No, it did not happen. For instance, it was a stroke that left Scotland's James Gregory (1638-1675) blind. (You will remember the Gregorian telescope.) However, he died days later. Thus, blindness little interfered with his occupation. English Abbot Richard of Wallingford (circa 1291 - circa 1335) wrote astronomical works and designed astronomical instruments. He was also blind in one eye. Yet as he further suffered from leprosy, his blindness seems the lesser of Richard's maladies. Perhaps the most famous professionally active, blind astronomer (or almost blind astronomer) is Dominique-Francois Arago (1786-1853), director until his death of the powerful nineteenth-century Paris Observatory. I will share other _ some poignant _ examples such as: William Campbell, whose blindness drove him to suicide; Leonhard Euler, astronomy's Beethoven, who did nearly half of his life's work while almost totally blind; and Edwin Frost, who "observed” a total solar eclipse while completely sightless.

  8. Observatories: History

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krisciunas, K.; Murdin, P.

    2000-11-01

    An astronomical OBSERVATORY is a building, installation or institution dedicated to the systematic and regular observation of celestial objects for the purpose of understanding their physical nature, or for purposes of time reckoning and keeping the calendar. At a bona fide observatory such work constitutes a main activity, not just an incidental one. While the ancient Egyptians, Babylonians, Chi...

  9. Amateur Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gavin, M.

    1997-08-01

    A roundup of amateur observatories in this country and abroad, with construction and location details, concluding with a detailed description and architect's drawing of the author's own observatory at Worcester Park, Surrey. The text of the 1996 Presidential Address to the British Astronomical Association.

  10. Determination of the Telluric Water Vapor Absorption Correction for Astronomical Data Obtained from the Kuiper Airborne Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Erickson, E. F.; Simpson, J. P.; Kuhn, P. M.; Stearns, L. P.

    1979-01-01

    The amount of telluric water vapor along the line of sight of the Kuiper Airborne Observatory telescope as obtained concommitantly on 23 flights is compared with the NASA-Ames Michelson interferometer and with the NOAA-Boulder radiometer. A strong correlation between the two determinations exists, and a method for computing the atmospheric transmission for a given radiometer reading is established.

  11. Experiments with "wide field" for Space Surveillance Systems in Odessa Astronomical observatory (Ukraine). Prodolzhen eksperiment s "shirokim polem" dlya zadach kontrolya kosmicheskogo prostranstva v Odesskoy astronomicheskoy observatorii

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sukhov, P. P.

    2007-08-01

    In OAO on point Mayaki (40 km for city) is continued observations geostationary (GSS) and low orbital (LEO) satellites with using more inexpensive domestic, "ready to use", wide field optic lens for the reason: To get limited magnitude on high orbital cosmic object (HEO) to 15m in to view telescope 3 -7 degrees for time accumulation 10-15 sec. To value the possibility of the use WFO for monitoring LEO on low orbit by height less than 2 000 km with limited magnitude to 11m on star for 1 sec. accumulations. 90% LEO from 39 objects are surely identified using catalog NORAD. About obtain the results possible to read in article: "About using wide field lens optics for Space Surveillance Systems in Odessa Astronomical observatory" (in Russian).

  12. The Results of Observations of Mutual Phenomena of the Galilean Satellites of Jupiter in 2009 and 2015 IN Nikolaev Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pomazan, A.; Maigurova, N.; Kryuchkovskiy, V.

    The Earth and Jupiter once in 6 years have simultaneous passage of the ecliptic plane due to their orbital movement around the Sun. This makes it possible to observe the mutual occultations and eclipses in the Galilean satellites of Jupiter. We took part in the observational campaigns of the mutual phenomena in 2009 and 2014-15. The observations were made with a B/W CCD camera WAT-902H at the telescope MCT (D = 0.115 m, F = 2.0 m) of the Nikolaev Astronomical Observatory. The light curves of mutual phenomena in the satellites of Jupiter were obtained as a result of processing photometric observations. The exact moments of maximum phases and the amplitudes of the light variation have been determined from the analysis of the light curves. The data sets for the light curves have been sent in the IMCCE (Institute de Mecanique et de calcul des ephemerides, France) that coordinates the PHEMU campaigns.

  13. Union catalogue of printed books of 15th, 16th and 17th centuries in European astronomical observatories.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grassi, G.

    This catalogue deals with the scientific subjects of that historical period such as astronomy, astrology, chemistry, mathematics, physics, historia naturalis and so forth, and contains extremely rare volumes such as the first printed editions of the eminent Arab, Latin, Greek and Persian scientists Albumasar, Albohazen Aly, Aristoteles, Ptolemaeus, Pliny the Elder and Ulugh Beig. In addition the catalogue contains the first works of such great astronomers of the 16th and 17th centuries as Copernicus, Kepler, Clavius, Regiomontanus, Sacrobosco, Mercator, Newton, Gassendi, Galilei and Hevelius, just to quote the most representative ones. The catalogue is followed by a chronological index and an index of printers and publishers.

  14. Studying local sources in the radio range based on the partial solar eclipse of January 4, 2011, at the Mountain Astronomical Station, Central Astronomical Observatory, Russian Academy of Sciences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shramko, A. D.; Guseva, S. A.

    2012-12-01

    Data are presented on a partial solar eclipse, which occurred on January 4, 2011, and was observed with RT-3 (λ = 4.9 cm) and RT-2 (λ = 3.2 cm) radio telescopes at the Mountain Astronomical Station, Central Astronomical Observatory, Russian Academy of Sciences (MAS CAO RAS). The radioemission flux in two channels was registered using digital methods with a time resolution of 0.5 s. Comparisons were performed with observations in the optical, UV, and X-ray ranges. The following local sources of increased radioemission on the solar disk have been identified: sunspot groups 1 (NOAA 1142) and 126 (NOAA 1141), unipolar sunspot 127 (NOAA 1140), facula areas, and polar and midlatitude coronal holes. It has been indicated that the brightness of a unipolar sunspot (for λ = 4.9 cm, I rel = 29.5; for λ = 3.2 cm, I rel = 10.1) and two sunspot groups (for λ = 4.9 cm, I rel = 10.1 and 14.2; for λ = 3.2 cm, I rel = 5.1 and 6.2) is maximal. The radioemission flux of all found coronal holes is decreased, and the decrease is more contrasting in the 4.9-cm range as compared to such a decrease in the 3.2-cm range. Radio maps of the Sun and changes in the radioemission flux of undisturbed solar regions from the center to the limb for λ = 4.9 and 3.2 cm have been constructed based on the eclipse data.

  15. High-resolution spectroscopy of the CN red system in comet C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) using WINERED at Koyama Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kawakita, Hideyo; Shinnaka, Yoshiharu; Kondo, Sohei; Hamano, Satoshi; Sameshima, Hiroaki; Nakanishi, Kenshi; Kawanishi, Takafumi; Nakaoka, Tetsuya; Otsubo, Shogo; Kinoshita, Masaomi; Ikeda, Yuji; Yamamoto, Ryo; Izumi, Natsuko; Fukue, Kei; Yasui, Chikako; Mito, Hiroyuki; Sarugaku, Yuki; Matsunaga, Noriyuki; Kobayashi, Naoto

    2015-11-01

    CN radical has the strong electronic transition moments in optical wavelength region and CN has extensively observed in comets. Especially, the CN violet system (B2Σ+—X2Σ+) has been observed by using high-resolution spectroscopic technique in order to infer the isotopic ratios of carbon and nitrogen in comets via 12C14N, 13C14N and 12C15N. However, the wavelength range for this system (~388 nm) is severely extinct if a comet is close to the Sun (we have to observe the comet at low elevations from the ground-based observatories). On the other hand, CN radical also has the strong electronic transition in near-infrared (~1.1 microns), the CN red system (A2Πi—X2Σ+). Although there are few reports on the high-resolution spectra of this band in comets, this wavelength region is not severely affected by the telluric extinction and considered as the new window for the observations of the carbon and nitrogen isotopic ratios in comets.High resolution near-infrared spectra of comet C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) using the WINERED (R~3x104) spectrometer mounted on the 1.3-m Araki telescope at Koyama Astronomical Observatory were acquired on UT 2013 Nov 30. The heliocentric and geocentric distances were 0.91 AU and 0.49 AU, respectively. We detected strong emission lines of the CN red system (0,0) at around 1.1 microns. The rotational line intensities of this band approximately follow the Boltzmann distribution at ~300K for our observations. We present the detailed analysis of the CN red system in comet C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) and discuss about the isotopic ratios in CN.This research program is supported by the MEXT --- Supported Program for the Strategic Research Foundation at Private Universities, 2014 - 2018 and partially supported by JSPS, 15J10864.

  16. Optical low-dispersion spectroscopic observations of Comet 103P/Hartley 2 at Koyama Astronomical Observatory during the EPOXI flyby

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shinnaka, Yoshiharu; Kawakita, Hideyo; Kobayashi, Hitomi; Naka, Chiharu; Arai, Akira; Arasaki, Takayuki; Kitao, Eiji; Taguchi, Gaku; Ikeda, Yuji

    2013-02-01

    We performed low-dispersion spectroscopic observations of Comet 103P/Hartley 2 in optical wavelengths using the LOSA/F2 mounted on the 1.3 m-Araki telescope at Koyama Astronomical Observatory on UT 2010 November 4 during the close approach of the Deep Impact spacecraft to the nucleus of Comet 103P/Hartley 2 in the EPOXI mission flyby. Our observations have revealed the chemistry of the coma at optical wavelengths; including CN, C3, C2 and NH2 along with H2O from [OI] emission at 6300 Å. Resultant mixing ratios of these radicals put the comet into the normal group in chemical composition. The mixing ratios with respect to H2O obtained in our observations are basically consistent with the previous optical spectro-photometric observations of Comet 103P/Hartley 2 in 1991 by A'Hearn et al. (A'Hearn, M.F., Millis, R.L., Schleicher, D.G., Osip, D.J., Birch, P.V. [1995]. Icarus 118, 223-270), the optical spectroscopic observations in 1998 by Fink (Fink, U. [2009]. Icarus 201, 311-334) and also consistent with the observations on UT 2010 October 27 and 29 by Lara et al. (Lara, L.M., Lin, Z.-Y., Meech, K. [2011]. Astron. Astrophys. 532, A87) (but only for the ratio relative to CN).

  17. Real and Virtual Heritage Historical Astronomical Plate Archives in Sonneberg, Bamberg and Hamburg Observatories, the Evolution of Astrophysics and their Influence on Human Knowledge and Culture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kunzmann, Björn

    The rise of astrophysics around 1860 introduced new instruments, methods and research areas. Of course, the increasing number of foundations of new observatories around the world starting at that time was forced by that new scientific discipline, too, but especially by the usage of photographic instruments. At the end of the 19th century the formation and development of photographic methods and techniques had reached a level of sufficient stability for productive usage in astronomy and astrophysics, their new instrumrents, methods and goals. The fundamental meaning of star light analysis for astrophysics by increasing discoveries of Variable Stars and the Systematic search for moving Solar System objects had basically driven the beginning of large photographic sky patrols at that time, using photographic glass plates as detectors and information storages. Sky Patrols, especially systematic long-term monitoring of the whole sky or of well defined selected areas and Sky Surveys were (and still are) an important key method that forced the evolution and progress of astrophysics. Important scientific results by famous astronomers, for example Walter Baade, Cuno Hoffmeister and Harlow Shapley depended on the analysis of photographic plates. Today, there are around 50 photographic plate archives world-wide. Most of them, unfortunately, are in a quite poor condition and not yet digitized. Following Harvard College Observatory with an estimated total of 600,000 plates, Sonneberg observatory harbours the second largest archive world-wide (around 300,000 plates) among other large ones in Germany like Bamberg (40,000 plates) and Hamburg (35,000 plates). These plate archives form an important heritage with a total of roughly two million direct plates and some ten or hundred thousands of spectroscopic plates. A lot of progress has been made by transforming this real heritage to a virtual one by systematic digitisation of the plates, but perhaps only 15% of them have been

  18. Taosi Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Xiaochun

    Taosi observatory is the remains of a structure discovered at the later Neolithic Taosi site located in Xiangfen County, Shanxi Province, in north-central China. The structure is a walled enclosure on a raised platform. Only rammed-earth foundations of the structure remained. Archaeoastronomical studies suggest that this structure functioned as an astronomical observatory. Historical circumstantial evidence suggests that it was probably related to the legendary kingdom of Yao from the twenty-first century BC.

  19. Dudley Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murdin, P.

    2000-11-01

    The Dudley Observatory, in Schenectady, New York, is a private foundation supporting research and education in astronomy, astrophysics and the history of astronomy. Chartered in 1852, it is the oldest organization in the US, outside academia and government, dedicated to the support of astronomical research. For more than a century it was a world leader in astrometry, with such achievements as pub...

  20. The Astronomers' Data Manifesto

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Norris, R. P.

    2006-08-01

    A draft manifesto is presented for discussion. The manifesto sets out guidelines to which the astronomical community should aspire to maximise the rate and cost-effectiveness of scientific discovery. The challenges are not underestimated, but can still be overcome if astronomers, observatories, journals, data centres, and the Virtual Observatory Alliance work together to overcome the hurdles. The key points of the manifesto are: 1. All major tables, images, and spectra published in journals should appear in the astronomical data centres. 2. All data obtained with publicly-funded observatories should, after appropriate proprietary periods, be placed in the public domain. 3. In any new major astronomical construction project, the data processing, storage, migration, and management requirements should be built in at an early stage of the project plan, and costed along with other parts of the project. 4. Astronomers in all countries should have the same access to astronomical data and information. 5. Legacy astronomical data can be valuable, and high-priority legacy data should be preserved and stored in digital form in the data centres. 6. The IAU should work with other international organisations to achieve our common goals and learn from our colleagues in other fields.

  1. John Flamsteed and the turn of the screw: mechanical uncertainty, the skilful astronomer and the burden of seeing correctly at the Royal Observatory, Greenwich.

    PubMed

    Spiegel, Richard J

    2015-03-01

    Centring on John Flamsteed (1646-1719), the first Astronomer Royal, this paper investigates the ways in which astronomers of the late seventeenth century worked to build and maintain their reputations by demonstrating, for their peers and for posterity, their proficiency in managing visual technologies. By looking at his correspondence and by offering a graphic and textual analysis of the preface to his posthumous Historia Coelestis Britannica (1725), I argue that Flamsteed based the legitimacy of his life's work on his capacity to serve as a skilful astronomer who could coordinate the production and proper use of astronomical sighting instruments. Technological advances in astrometry were, for Flamsteed, a necessary but not a sufficient condition for the advancement of astronomy. Technological resources needed to be used by the right person. The work of the skilful astronomer was a necessary precondition for the mobilization and proper management of astronomical technologies. Flamsteed's understanding of the astronomer as a skilled actor importantly shifted the emphasis in precision astronomical work away from the individual observer's ability to see well and toward the astronomer's ability to ensure that instruments guaranteed accurate vision.

  2. The South African Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1989-01-01

    Topics discussed in the Overview of Year 1988 include the following: Supernova in the Large Magellanic Cloud; Galaxies; Ground based observations of celestial x ray sources; the Magellanic Clouds; Pulsating variables; Galactic structure; Binary star phenomena; The provision of photometric standards; Nebulae and interstellar matter; Stellar astrophysics; Astrometry; Solar system studies; Visitors programs; Publications; and General matters.

  3. On Tokugawa Bakufu's astronomical officials

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamada, Keiji

    2005-06-01

    Tokugawa Bakufu's astronomical office, established in 1684, is the post for calendar reform. The reform was conducted when the calendar did not predict peculiar celestial phenomena, such as solar or lunar eclipses. It was, so to speak, the theme of the ancient astronomy. From removal of the embargo on importing western science books in 1720, Japanese astronomers studied European astronomy and attempted to apply its knowledge to calendar making. Moreover, they knew the Copernican system and also faced several modern astronomical subjects. The French astronomer Lalande's work "ASTRONOMY" exerted particularly strong influence on astronomers. This paper overviews the activities of Paris observatory and French astronomers in the 17th and 18th centuries, and survey what modern astronomical subjects were. Finally, it sketches a role of the Edo observatory played in the Japanese cultural history.

  4. Reconstructing the astronomical heritage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Planesas, Pere

    2011-06-01

    Studies of the astronomical heritage can deal with the ancient astronomical knowledge, traditions and myths, as well as with old instruments and observatories. It is urgent to work for their recovery, before they are definitely forgoten, lost or destroyed. On the cultural side, the Joint ALMA Observatory is sponsoring the study of the local cosmology and sky of the indigenous people living in the region where ALMA is currently being build. In the case of ancient instruments, several success stories already exist, the most recent one being the reconstruction of the Madrid 25ft Herschel telescope. Examples of notable instruments pending reconstruction are listed.

  5. Russian Astronomical Data Resources

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malkov, O. Yu.; Kovaleva, D. A.; Kilpio, E. Yu.

    2006-08-01

    The ultimate goal of the RVO initiative is to integrate resources of astronomical data accumulated in Russian observatories and institutions, and to provide Russian data to the rest of the world. We collect information about all available Russian and some former Soviet Union (fSU) astronomical data resources, classify them and register them in the registries of other VO projects. A new version of the list of Russian and fSU astronomical resources is recently compiled and presented here. The original resources that contain astronomical data obtained by Russian and fSU astronomers are listed by kind of object they treat (Sun, Solar System, Stars, Stellar Systems, Radioastronomy, Cosmic Rays, Mixed Data Archives). This list of resources (as well as other information on RVO) can be found on the RVO web page.

  6. UkrVO astronomical WEB services

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mazhaev, O. E.

    2017-02-01

    Ukraine Virtual Observatory (UkrVO) has been a member of the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA) since 2011. The virtual observatory (VO) is not a magic solution to all problems of data storing and processing, but it provides certain standards for building infrastructure of astronomical data center. The astronomical databases help data mining and offer to users an easy access to observation metadata, images within celestial sphere and results of image processing. The astronomical web services (AWS) of UkrVO give to users handy tools for data selection from large astronomical catalogues for a relatively small region of interest in the sky. Examples of the AWS usage are showed.

  7. The Space Telescope Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bahcall, J. N.; Odell, C. R.

    1979-01-01

    A convenient guide to the expected characteristics of the Space Telescope Observatory for astronomers and physicists is presented. An attempt is made to provide enough detail so that a professional scientist, observer or theorist, can plan how the observatory may be used to further his observing programs or to test theoretical models.

  8. The Knorre astronomers' dynasty

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pinigin, G.

    2009-06-01

    We attempt to throw light upon the poorly known astronomical dynasty of Knorre and describe its contribution to astronomy. The founder of the dynasty, Ernst Christoph Friedrich Knorre (1759-1810), was born in Germany in 1759, and since 1802 he was a Professor of Mathematics at the Tartu University, and observer at its temporary observatory. He determined the first coordinates of Tartu by stellar observations. Karl Friedrich Knorre (1801-1883) was the first director of the Naval Observatory in Nikolaev since the age of 20, provided the Black Sea navy with accurate time and charts, trained mariners in astronomical navigation, and certified navigation equipment. He compiled star maps and catalogues, and determined positions of comets and planets. He also participated in Bessel's project of the Academic Star Charts, and was responsible for Hora 4, published by the Berlin Academy of Sciences. This sheet permitted to discover two minor planets, Astraea and Flora. Viktor Knorre (1840-1919) was born in Nikolaev. In 1862 he left for Berlin to study astronomy. After defending his thesis for a doctor's degree, he went to Pulkovo as an astronomical calculator in 1867. Since 1873 Viktor worked as an observer of the Berlin Observatory Fraunhofer refractor. His main research focussed on minor planets, comets and binary stars. He discovered the minor planets Koronis, Oenone, Hypatia and Penthesilea. Viktor Knorre also worked on improving astronomical instrumentation, e.g. the Knorre / Heele equatorial telescope mounting.

  9. The Russian Virtual Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dluzhnevskaya, O. B.; Malkov, O. Yu.; Kilpio, A. A.; Kilpio, E. Yu.; Kovaleva, D. A.; Sat, L. A.

    The Russian Virtual Observatory (RVO) will be an integral component of the International Virtual Observatory (IVO). The RVO has the main goal of integrating resources of astronomical data accumulated in Russian observatories and institutions (databases, archives, digitized glass libraries, bibliographic data, a remote access system to information and technical resources of telescopes etc.), and providing transparent access for scientific and educational purposes to the distributed information and data services that comprise its content. Another goal of the RVO is to provide Russian astronomers with on-line access to the rich volumes of data and metadata that have been, and will continue to be, produced by astronomical survey projects. Centre for Astronomical Data (CAD), among other Russian institutions, has had the greatest experience in collecting and distributing astronomical data for more than 20 years. Some hundreds of catalogs and journal tables are currently available from the CAD repository. More recently, mirrors of main astronomical data resources (VizieR, ADS, etc) are now maintained in CAD. Besides, CAD accumulates and makes available for the astronomical community information on principal Russian astronomical resources.

  10. Report on the decade of un/esa workshops on basic space science: the international perspective from small astronomical telescopes to the world space observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haubold, H.; Wamsteker, W.

    The UN/ESA Workshops on Basic Space Science is a long-term effort for the development of astronomy and regional and international cooperation in this field on a world wide basis, particularly in developing nations. The first four workshops in this series (India 1991, Costa Rica and Colombia 1992, Nigeria 1993, and Egypt 1994) addressed the status of astronomy in Asia and the Pacific, Latin America and the Caribbean, Africa, and Western Asia, respectively. One major recommendation that emanated from the first four workshops was that small astronomical facilities should be established in developing nations for research and education programmes at the university level and that such facilities should be networked. Subsequently, material for teaching and observational programmes for small optical telescopes were developed or recommended and astronomical telescope facilities have been inaugurated at UN/ESA Workshops on Basic Space Science in Sri Lanka (1995), Honduras (1997), and Jordan (1999). Elements of the Workshops, focusing on teaching, observing programmes, and the Japanese donation programme for small astronomical telescopes are briefly summarized in the first part of this paper. A report on the recent UN/ESA Workshop on Basic Space Science, held at CONAE of Argentina in 2002, and a full report on achievements of the UN/ESA Workshops on Basic Space Science for the period of time from 1991 to 2002 is contained in the second part of this paper. Since 1991, similar reports, issued for each of the UN/ESA Workshops on Basic Space Science, have been brought to the attention of UN Member States on an annual basis with the objective to gain more support for the world wide development of astronomy. WWW: http://www.seas.columbia.edu/~ah297/un-esa/

  11. Astronomical Data Center Bulletin, volume 1, no. 1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Warren, W. H., Jr. (Editor); Nagy, T. A. (Editor); Mead, J. M. (Editor)

    1980-01-01

    Information about work in progress on astronomical catalogs is presented. In addition to progress reports, an upadated status list for astronomical catalogs available at the Astronomical Data Center is included. Papers from observatories and individuals involved with astronomical data are also presented.

  12. Development and test of an IR camera for astronomical observation at the Palomar 200-in. observatory using the NICMOS II array

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bruce, Carl; Beichman, Charles; Van Buren, D.; Gautier, Nick; Jorquera, Carlos; Seaman, Kirk

    1992-01-01

    A NICMOS II array, a NIR (0.80 - 2.6 micron) imaging system, was integrated into the California Institute of Technology Palomar Observatory camera. The Palomar camera system which consists of six discrete subsystems including a focal plane, an electrical interface, data acquisition electronics, a dewar, dewar optics, and the software is described. The performance and calibration data for each subsystem are presented. Emphasis is placed on test data on the focal plane performance.

  13. Airborne Infrared Astronomical Telescopes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Erickson, Edwin F.

    2017-01-01

    A unique program of infrared astronomical observations from aircraft evolved at NASA’s Ames Research Center, beginning in the 1960s. Telescopes were flown on a Convair 990, a Lear Jet, and a Lockheed C-141 - the Kuiper Airborne Observatory (KAO) - leading to the planning and development of SOFIA: a 2.7 m telescope now flying on a Boeing 747SP. The poster describes these telescopes and highlights of some of the scientific results obtained from them.

  14. The Quest for Astronomical Sources: VOQuest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Osuna, P.; Ortiz, I.; Stebe, A.; Salgado, J.; Barbarisi, I.; Arviset, C.

    2007-10-01

    The quest for astronomical objects requires time, effort, and tools of varying degrees of complexity and efficiency. Today the Virtual Observatory is opening the doors to effortless astronomical research. Among other activities, the International Virtual Observatory Alliance is defining standards that will allow seamless interoperation among astronomical archives. These standards define what an astronomical source is, the language to access the details of the source, and how to combine both for effective data acquisition. The ESA-VO VOQuest prototype tool integrates these protocols allowing a user to select astronomical sources from different archives such as catalogs, databases, etc. By making use of the IVOA-endorsed ADQL, Basic SkyNode and Source Data Model standards, this tool allows the astronomer to cross-correlate large amounts of information on astronomical sources with unprecedent ease, helping to make decisions on the nature and identification of the different objects.

  15. Graduate Astronomy Education in the Early Days of Lick Observatory.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Osterbrock, Donald E.

    1980-01-01

    Discusses Lick Observatory's (University of California) early graduate students and graduate program in astronomy. The history of the Lick Observatory and famous astronomy professors and astronomers associated with the Lick Observatory are also discussed. (DS)

  16. Graduate Astronomy Education in the Early Days of Lick Observatory.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Osterbrock, Donald E.

    1980-01-01

    Discusses Lick Observatory's (University of California) early graduate students and graduate program in astronomy. The history of the Lick Observatory and famous astronomy professors and astronomers associated with the Lick Observatory are also discussed. (DS)

  17. The Optici and Mechanici of the Berlin Academy and of its Astronomical Observatory. (German Title: Optici und Mechanici der Berliner Akademie und ihrer Sternwarte)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zaun, Joerg

    Amongst the staff of the Berlin Academy in the 18th century, who have until now been almost completely absent from historical texts, were numerous mechanical and optical technicians. Although only a partial picture can be drawn from the available historical sources, it is clear that the Academy continuously employed a number of instrument makers, and financed their labours generously. Their primary task was the care and repair of the Academy's and its observatory's scientific instruments. Most of this equipment was, in the 18th century, imported from Paris or London.

  18. Computer version of astronomical ephemerides.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Choliy, V. Ya.

    A computer version of astronomical ephemerides for bodies of the Solar System, stars, and astronomical phenomena was created at the Main Astronomical Observatory of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine and the Astronomy and Cosmic Physics Department of the Taras Shevchenko National University. The ephemerides will be distributed via INTERNET or in the file form. This information is accessible via the web servers space.ups.kiev.ua and alfven.ups.kiev.ua or the address choliy@astrophys.ups.kiev.ua.

  19. Astronomical masers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Elitzur, Moshe

    1992-01-01

    Recent research related to astronomical masers is reviewed. First, attention is given to phenomenology, including observations and modeling of galactic and extragalactic maser sources. The discussion then focuses on the developments concerning the physical properties of maser radiation. Finally, the use of masers as general tools for the study of astronomical environments where the radiation is produced and where it propagates, is discussed.

  20. The League of Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, Nancy H.; Brandel, A.; Paat, A. M.; Schmitz, D.; Sharma, R.; Trujillo, J.; Laws, C. S.

    2014-01-01

    The League of Astronomers is committed to engaging the University of Washington (UW) and the greater Seattle communities through outreach, research, and events. Since its re-founding two years ago, the LOA has provided a clear connection between the UW Astronomy Department, undergraduate students, and members of the public. Weekly outreach activities such as public star parties and planetarium talks in both the UW Planetarium and the Mobile Planetarium have connected enthusiastic LOA volunteers with hundreds of public observers. In addition, collaboration with organizations like the Seattle Astronomical Society and the UW Society of Physics Students has allowed the LOA to reach an even greater audience. The club also provides opportunities for undergraduate students to participate in research projects. The UW Student Radio Telescope (SRT) and the Manastash Ridge Observatory (MRO) both allow students to practice collecting their own data and turning it into a completed project. Students have presented many of these research projects at venues like the UW Undergraduate Research Symposium and meetings of the American Astronomical Society. For example, the LOA will be observing newly discovered globular clusters at the Dominion Astrophysical Observatory (DAO) in Victoria, B.C. and constructing color-magnitude diagrams. The LOA also helps engage students with the Astronomy major through a variety of events. Bimonthly seminars led by graduate students on their research and personal experiences in the field showcase the variety of options available for students in astronomy. Social events hosted by the club encourage peer mentoring and a sense of community among the Astronomy Department’s undergraduate and graduate students. As a part of one of the nation’s largest undergraduate astronomy programs, members of the League of Astronomers have a unique opportunity to connect and interact with not only the Seattle public but also the greater astronomical community.

  1. Future Directions for Astronomical Image Display

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mandel, Eric

    2000-01-01

    In the "Future Directions for Astronomical Image Displav" project, the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) and the National Optical Astronomy Observatories (NOAO) evolved our existing image display program into fully extensible. cross-platform image display software. We also devised messaging software to support integration of image display into astronomical analysis systems. Finally, we migrated our software from reliance on Unix and the X Window System to a platform-independent architecture that utilizes the cross-platform Tcl/Tk technology.

  2. Advancing the Gemini Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hammel, Heidi B.; Levenson, Nancy A.

    2012-11-01

    Gemini Science and User Meeting; San Francisco, California, 17-20 July 2012 More than 100 astronomers gathered in San Francisco to discuss results from the Gemini Observatory and to plan for its future. The Gemini Observatory consists of twin 8.1 meter diameter optical/infrared telescopes located on mountaintops in Hawai'i and Chile. Gemini was built and is operated by an international partnership that currently includes the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Chile, Australia, Brazil, and Argentina.

  3. COMMISSION 5: Documentation and Astronomical Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Genova, Françoise; Norris, Raymond P.; Bessel, M. S.; Dluzhnevskaia, O.; Jenkner, H.; Malkov, O.; Murtagh, F.; Nakajima, K.; Ochsenbein, F.; Pence, W.; Schmitz, M.; Wielen, R.; Zhao, Y. H.

    2007-03-01

    The triennial report of Commission V Documentation and Astronomical Data/Documentation et Données Astronomiques covers 2002-2005 activities, and in particular the activities of the five Working Groups: Working Group Astronomical Data; Working Group Designations; Working Group Libraries; Working Group FITS; Working Group Virtual Observatories; and of Task Force for the Preservation and Digitization of Photographic Plates.

  4. Information Hub of the Russian Virtual Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malkov, Oleg; Dluzhnevskaya, Olga; Kilpio, Elena; Kilpio, Alexander; Kovaleva, Dana

    The ultimate goal of the Russian Virtual Observatory (RVO) initiative is to provide every astronomer with on-line access to the rich volumes of data and metadata that have been and will continue to be produced by astronomical survey projects. The information hub of the RVO has a main goal of integrating resources of astronomical data accumulated in Russian observatories and institutions, and providing transparent access for scientific and educational purposes to the distributed information and data services that comprise its content.

  5. Korean Astronomical Calendar, Chiljeongsan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Eun Hee

    In fifteenth century Korea, there was a grand project for the astronomical calendar and instrument making by the order of King Sejong 世宗 (1418-1450). During this period, many astronomical and calendrical books including Islamic sources in Chinese versions were imported from Ming 明 China, and corrected and researched by the court astronomers of Joseon 朝鮮 (1392-1910). Moreover, the astronomers and technicians of Korea frequently visited China to study astronomy and instrument making, and they brought back useful information in the form of new published books or specifications of instruments. As a result, a royal observatory equipped with 15 types of instrument was completed in 1438. Two types of calendar, Chiljeongsan Naepyeon 七政算內篇 and Chiljeongsan Oepyeon 七政算外篇, based on the Chinese and Islamic calendar systems, respectively, were published in 1444 with a number of calendrical editions such as corrections and example supplements (假令) including calculation methods and results for solar and lunar eclipses.

  6. Grand Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Young, Eric W.

    2002-01-01

    Various concepts have been recently presented for a 100 m class astronomical observatory. The science virtues of such an observatory are many: resolving planets orbiting around other stars, resolving the surface features of other stars, extending our temporal reach back toward the beginning (at and before stellar and galactic development), improving on the Next Generation Space Telescope, and other (perhaps as yet) undiscovered purposes. This observatory would be a general facility instrument with wide spectral range from at least the near ultraviolet to the mid infrared. The concept espoused here is based on a practical, modular design located in a place where temperatures remain (and instruments could operate) within several degrees of absolute zero with no shielding or cooling. This location is the bottom of a crater located near the north or south pole of the moon, most probably the South Polar Depression. In such a location the telescope would never see the sun or the earth, hence the profound cold and absence of stray light. The ideal nature of this location is elaborated herein. It is envisioned that this observatory would be assembled and maintained remotely through the use of expert robotic systems. A base station would be located above the crater rim with (at least occasional) direct line-of-sight access to the earth. Certainly it would be advantageous, but not absolutely essential, to have humans travel to the site to deal with unexpected contingencies. Further, observers and their teams could eventually travel there for extended observational campaigns. Educational activities, in general, could be furthered thru extended human presence. Even recreational visitors and long term habitation might follow.

  7. Astronomical Fourier spectropolarimetry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Forbes, F. F.; Fymat, A. L.

    1974-01-01

    Spectra of the Stokes polarization parameters of Venus (resolution 0.5 per cm) are presented. They were obtained at the Cassegrain focus of the 154-cm telescope of the National Mexican Observatory, Baja California, Mexico, July 12 and 13, 1972, with the Fourier Interferometer Polarimeter (FIP). A preliminary, limited analysis of four spectral features and of the CO2 rotational band structures at 6080 and 6200 per cm has demonstrated that spectral polarization is indeed present. These experimental results, confirmed by two series of observations, provide substantiation for this theoretically predicted phenomenon. They also tend to show that the FIP represents a novel astronomical tool for variable spectral resolution studies of both the intensity and the state of polarization of astronomical light sources.

  8. Astronomical Fourier spectropolarimetry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Forbes, F. F.; Fymat, A. L.

    1974-01-01

    Spectra of the Stokes polarization parameters of Venus (resolution 0.5 per cm) are presented. They were obtained at the Cassegrain focus of the 154-cm telescope of the National Mexican Observatory, Baja California, Mexico, July 12 and 13, 1972, with the Fourier Interferometer Polarimeter (FIP). A preliminary, limited analysis of four spectral features and of the CO2 rotational band structures at 6080 and 6200 per cm has demonstrated that spectral polarization is indeed present. These experimental results, confirmed by two series of observations, provide substantiation for this theoretically predicted phenomenon. They also tend to show that the FIP represents a novel astronomical tool for variable spectral resolution studies of both the intensity and the state of polarization of astronomical light sources.

  9. The Management of Astronomical Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Norris, R. P.

    2006-08-01

    Astronomy has a distinguished tradition of using technology to accelerate the quality and effectiveness of science. However, amongst the shining examples of excellent data management by major projects lie examples of projects and institutions where data management has not been properly resourced, or where hard-earned data remain inaccessible to most astronomers. We need to establish and agree on a set of guiding principles for the management of astronomical data. For example, all OECD governments, representing nearly all countries with major astronomical facilities, have committed to the principle that publicly-funded data should be placed in the public domain. The last IAU GA in Sydney passed a resolution that archive data from publicly funded observatories should be placed in the public domain. The HST archive, which quadruples the number of science publications resulting from HST data, has demonstrated the value to science of doing so. And yet many observatory archives are still inaccessible. Another example is the barrier between journals and data centres. The astronomical data centres are enormously successful, and provide powerful tools which have accelerated the advance of science, and some of our journals are forward-looking and receptive to new ideas. And yet most data published in those journals never appear in the data centres. These two examples show that we are not making most effective use of our data, and consequently are not extracting the maximum scientific value from our observatories and astronomers. The Virtual Observatory promises us tools to provide better access to data, but these tools lose their value if the data are not available. It is time for the astronomical community to adopt a professional approach to data management, to maximise the science that can be achieved with our new and existing facilities.

  10. Development of Mykolaiv Virtual Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mazhaev, A.; Protsyuk, Yu.

    Results obtained in 2010-2013 on the development of astronomical databases and web services are presented. Mykolaiv Virtual Observatory (MVO) is a part of the Ukrainian Virtual Observatory (UkrVO). At present, MVO consists of three major databases containing data on: astrometric catalogues, photographic plates, CCD observations. The databases facilitate the process of data mining and provide easy access to the textual and graphic information on the results of observations and their reduction obtained during the whole history of Nikolaev Astronomical Observatory (NAO).

  11. NASA'S Great Observatories

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1998-01-01

    Why are space observatories important? The answer concerns twinkling stars in the night sky. To reach telescopes on Earth, light from distant objects has to penetrate Earth's atmosphere. Although the sky may look clear, the gases that make up our atmosphere cause problems for astronomers. These gases absorb the majority of radiation emanating from celestial bodies so that it never reaches the astronomer's telescope. Radiation that does make it to the surface is distorted by pockets of warm and cool air, causing the twinkling effect. In spite of advanced computer enhancement, the images finally seen by astronomers are incomplete. NASA, in conjunction with other countries' space agencies, commercial companies, and the international community, has built observatories such as the Hubble Space Telescope, the Compton Gamma Ray Observatory, and the Chandra X-ray Observatory to find the answers to numerous questions about the universe. With the capabilities the Space Shuttle provides, scientist now have the means for deploying these observatories from the Shuttle's cargo bay directly into orbit.

  12. The Russian Virtual Observatory Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dluzhnevskaya, O. B.; Malkov, O. Yu.

    2005-12-01

    We describe the Russian Virtual Observatory (RVO), a prestigious international project sponsored by the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS). In 2001, the RAS Scientific Council on Astronomy included this project in a list of the most important international projects of the RAS. Its main goal to create and develop the RVO, intended to provide Russian astronomers with direct and effective access to worldwide astronomical data resources. The RVO is one component of the International Virtual Observatory (IVO), a system in which vast astronomical archives and databases around the world, together with analysis tools and computational services, are linked together into an integrated facility. The IVO unites all important national and international projects to create virtual observatories, coordinated by the International Virtual Observatory Alliance. The RVO is one of the organizers and an important participant of the IVO Alliance.

  13. San Marcos Astronomical Project and Doctoral Prospectus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aguilar, M. L.

    2009-05-01

    The Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos, UNMSM, in Lima, Perú, is the only Peruvian institution working for the peruvian astronomical development as a career since 1970. We are conforming a network with international friend astronomers to invite them as Visiting Lectures to assure the academic level for the future doctoral studies in the UNMSM. The Chancellor of UNMSM has decided that the Astronomical Project is a UNMSM Project, to encourage and advance in this scientific and strategical area, to impulse the modernity of Peru, the major effort will be the building of the San Marcos Astronomical Observatory, with a telescope of 1 meter aperture.

  14. Astronomical kaleidoscope

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaina, Alex

    2005-10-01

    The entry contains two Moon eclipses (a picture of a total eclipse and a photo of a penumbral one), photographs of monuments of few greatest astronomers: Nikolay Kopernik, Tiho Brahe and Johannes Kepler, a photo from the JENAM-1995 (Catania, Sicily) as well as photographs of few astronomers related with Moldova and Romania: V. Grigorevskii, N. Donitch, V.Nadolschi, D. Mangeron, two nice clocks in Prague, as well as a map of the Sanctuary in Orheiul -Vechi (Bessarabia) with an supposed ancient calendar.

  15. The Quito Astronomical Instruments Heritage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lopez, Ericsson

    The Quito Astronomical Observatory was build in the 1873s thanks to the generous sponsoring of the president of the Republic of Ecuador Dr. Gabriel García Moreno who desire was to build a long-lasting monument to Ecuadorian science . Thanks to the collaboration of father J. B. Menten one of the leading german astronomer the President' s dream came true. The Observatory with its splendid buildings was in fact equipped with a series of very important instruments such as the 30-cm Mertz refractor a large Molteni meridian instrument and a Bamber of 10 cm. Other instruments were subsequently added in the course of the 20th century. Recently we have performed a detailed inventory of all the historical instruments still preserved at the Observatory. This paper is dedicated to briefly trace the history of the Quito Observatory and describe its most characteristic instruments. Moreover it is presented the work done for preserving this important scientific heritage and discuss some of the typical problems that the researchers the students amateur astronomers and the public find in a still active scientific institution in a developing country.

  16. Astronomer's Proposal Tool

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Krueger, Tony

    2005-01-01

    Astronomer's Proposal Tool (APT) is a computer program that assists astronomers in preparing their Phase 1 and Phase 2 Hubble Space Telescope science programs. APT is a successor to the Remote Proposal Submission System 2 (RPS2) program, which has been rendered obsolete by more recent advances in computer software and hardware. APT exploits advances associated with widespread use of the Internet, multiplatform visual development software tools, and overall increases in the power of desktop computer hardware, all in such a way as to make the preparation and submission of proposals more intuitive and make observatory operations less cumbersome. APT provides documentation and help that are friendly, up to date, and easily accessible to users of varying levels of expertise, while defining an extensible framework that is responsive to changes in both technology and observatory operations. APT consists of two major components: (1) a set of software tools that are intuitive, visual, and responsive and (2) an integrated software environment that unifies all the tools and makes them interoperable. The APT tools include the Visual Target Tuner, Proposal Editor, Exposure Planner, Bright Object Checker, and Visit Planner.

  17. Drag coefficients for astronomical observatory satellites

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Williams, R. R.

    1975-01-01

    The first experimental European communications satellite Symphonie is a geostationary satellite. The satellite is designed and built in a joint project by French and German aerospace firms. A description is given of the basic technical concept of the satellite. The apogee motor is discussed along with the satellite stabilization system. The stabilization system provides a three-axis positional stabilization and an orbital stabilization. Attention is given to the spin stabilization phase, the sensors employed, the approache used for orbital correction maneuvers, and the conduction of simulation tests on the ground.

  18. Chicago's Dearborn Observatory: a study in survival

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bartky, Ian R.

    2000-12-01

    The Dearborn Observatory, located on the Old University of Chicago campus from 1863 until 1888, was America's most promising astronomical facility when it was founded. Established by the Chicago Astronomical Society and directed by one of the country's most gifted astronomers, it boasted the largest telescope in the world and virtually unlimited operating funds. The Great Chicago Fire of 1871 destroyed its funding and demolished its research programme. Only via the sale of time signals and the heroic efforts of two amateur astronomers did the Dearborn Observatory survive.

  19. Asteroid Lightcurve Analysis at the Danhenge Observatory Apr - Aug 2011

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coley, Daniel

    2012-01-01

    The lightcurves for three main-belt asteroids, 1413 Roucarie, 3385 Bronnina, and 39890 Bobstephens. All observations were taken from the DanHenge Observatory, one of 13 observatories at Goat Mountain Astronomical Research Station (GMARS - MPC G79).

  20. The Norwegian Naval Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pettersen, Bjørn Ragnvald

    2007-07-01

    Archival material has revealed milestones and new details in the history of the Norwegian Naval Observatories. We have identified several of the instrument types used at different epochs. Observational results have been extracted from handwritten sources and an extensive literature search. These allow determination of an approximate location of the first naval observatory building (1842) at Fredriksvern. No physical remains exist today. A second observatory was established in 1854 at the new main naval base at Horten. Its location is evident on military maps and photographs. We describe its development until the Naval Observatory buildings, including archives and instruments, were completely demolished during an allied air bomb raid on 23 February 1945. The first director, C.T.H. Geelmuyden, maintained scientific standards at the the Observatory between 1842 and 1870, and collaborated with university astronomers to investigate, develop, and employ time-transfer by telegraphy. Their purpose was accurate longitude determination between observatories in Norway and abroad. The Naval Observatory issued telegraphic time signals twice weekly to a national network of sites, and as such served as the first national time-service in Norway. Later the Naval Observatory focused on the particular needs of the Navy and developed into an internal navigational service.

  1. Early German plans for southern observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolfschmidt, G.

    2002-07-01

    As early as the 18th and 19th centuries, French and English observers were active in South Africa. Around the beginning of the 20th century, Heidelberg and Potsdam astronomers proposed a southern observatory. Then Göttingen astronomers suggested building an observatory in Windhoek for photographing the sky and measuring the solar constant. In 1910 Karl Schwarzschild (1873-1916), after a visit to observatories in the United States, pointed out the usefulness of an observatory in South West Africa, in a climate superior to that in Germany, giving German astronomers access to the southern sky. Seeing tests were begun in 1910 by Potsdam astronomers, but WW I stopped the plans. In 1928 Erwin Finlay-Freundlich (1885-1964), inspired by the Hamburg astronomer Walter Baade (1893-1960), worked out a detailed plan for a southern observatory with a reflecting telescope, spectrographs and an astrograph with an objective prism. Paul Guthnick (1879-1947), director of the Berlin observatory, in cooperation with APO Potsdam and Hamburg, made a site survey to Africa in 1929 and found the conditions in Windhoek to be ideal. Observations were started in the 1930s by Berlin and Breslau astronomers, but were stopped by WW II. In the 1950s, astronomers from Hamburg and The Netherlands renewed the discussion in the framework of European cooperation, and this led to the founding of ESO in 1963.

  2. Knowledge discovery in astronomical data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Yanxia; Zheng, Hongwen; Zhao, Yongheng

    2008-08-01

    With the construction and development of ground-based and space-based observatories, astronomical data amount to Terascale, even Petascale. How to extract knowledge from so huge data volume by automated methods is a big challenge for astronomers. Under this situation, many researchers have studied various approaches and developed different softwares to solve this issue. According to the special task of data mining, we need to select an appropriate technique suiting the requirement of data characteristics. Moreover all algorithms have their own pros and cons. We introduce the characteristics of astronomical data, present the taxonomy of knowledge discovery, and describe the functionalities of knowledge discovery in detail. Then the methods of knowledge discovery are touched upon. Finally the successful applications of data mining techniques in astronomy are summarized and reviewed. Facing data avalanche in astronomy, knowledge discovery in databases (KDD) shows its superiority.

  3. Virtual Observatory for stellar astronomy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malkov, O.; Zolotukhin, I.

    2013-10-01

    The principal idea of the Virtual Observatory is to achieve real transparency for astronomical data, similar to transparency for all the world's documents in the World Wide Web. In the Virtual Observatory, all the world's astronomical data is available from one's desktop. All archives understand the same query language, can be accessed through a uniform interface, and diverse data can be analyzed with the same tools. In particular, facilities of the Virtual Observatory allow users to make a fast and correct analysis of objects from various surveys. It yields multi-photometry data on registered objects and makes it possible to determine stellar parameters. Methods of astronomical data analysis as well as their application to various areas of stellar astronomy are discussed in this paper.

  4. The Transformation of an Astronomical Institution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DeVorkin, David H.

    2012-01-01

    In 1954 the Astrophysical Observatory of the Smithsonian Institution was closed down in Washington and transferred to Harvard, becoming the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory. It was a bureau of the Harvard College Observatory but was wholly governed by the Smithsonian in Washington. Historians such as the speaker and Ron Doel have explored the nature of the transfer, but not so much its implications. Specifically, soon after the transfer, the SAO geared up for the IGY, the only astronomical institution to do so in a big way, and the NSF became the conduit for a vastly increased level of activity of a character and scale only dreamed of by astronomers prior to the Cold War era. This support, and soon additional NASA and Air Force support, led to the SAO becoming one of the largest astronomical institutions on the planet by the mid-1960s. We will explore some of the implications.

  5. The Ultimate Private Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aymond, J.

    2009-03-01

    An amateur astronomer from Washington Parish, Southeast Louisiana, USA has designed and built an amazing observatory. It is not only an astronomical observatory, but a home theater, and tornado shelter designed to take a direct hit from an F5 tornado. The facility is fully equipped and automated, with a hydraulically driven roof that weighs 20,571 lbs., which lifts up, then rolls away to the end of the tracks. This leaves the user sitting inside of four 14-foot high walls open to the night sky. It has two premium quality telescopes for viewing deep space and objects inside the solar system. The chair that the observer sits on is also hydraulically driven.

  6. Observatoriya imeni russkogo astronoma v dalekoj Brazilii. K 100-letiyu so diya rozhdeniya Aleksandra Ivanovicha Postoeva (1900 - 1976) %t An observatory in distant Brazil named after a Russian astronomer (dedicated to Alexander Postoyev (1900 - 1976) centennial anniversary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marques Dos Santos, P.; Matsuura, O. T.

    This is a biographical note on the life of Dr. Alexander Postoyev, a victim of Stalin's purge of Soviet astronomers in 1936 - 1937. Together with his family, he left the Soviet Union in 1943 and lived in Germany as a refugee and a "displaced person" until 1952, when he moved to Brazil. There, he started the second part of his professional career. Thanks to his efforts, the Astronomical and Geophysical Institute (IAG) of the University of Sao Paulo (USP) was for the first time included in programs of international cooperation, thus contributing to the institutional consolidation of IAG/USP as a leading center of astronomical research and teaching in Brazil now.

  7. ISS images for Observatory protection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sánchez de Miguel, Alejandro; Zamorano, Jaime

    2015-08-01

    Light pollution is the main factor of degradation of the astronomical quality of the sky along the history. Astronomical observatories have been monitoring how the brightness of the sky varies using photometric measures of the night sky brightness mainly at zenith. Since the sky brightness depends in other factors such as sky glow, aerosols, solar activity and the presence of celestial objects, the continuous increase of light pollution in these enclaves is difficult to trace except when it is too late.Using models of light dispersion on the atmosphere one can determine which light pollution sources are increasing the sky brightness at the observatories. The input satellite data has been provided by DMSP/OLS and SNPP/VIIRS. Unfortunately their panchromatic bands (color blinded) are not useful to detect in which extension the increase is due to the dramatic change produced by the irruption of LED technology in outdoor lighting. The only instrument in the space that is able to distinguish between the various lighting technologies are the DSLR cameras used by the astronauts onboard the ISS.Current status for some astronomical observatories that have been imaged from the ISS is presented. We are planning to send an official request to NASA with a plan to get images for the most important astronomical observatories. We ask support for this proposal by the astronomical community and especially by the US-based researchers.

  8. Annals of Shanghai Observatory, Academia Sinica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Cheng; Jiang, Dong-Rong; Li, Zhi-Fang; Wan, Ning-Shan; Wang, Lan-Juan; Wang, Jia-Ji; Jiang, Xiao-Yuan; Zhu, Neng-Hong; Xu, Hua-Guan; Li, Zhi-Fang; Yan, Hao-Jian; Jin, Wen-Jing; Zheng, Da-Wei; Liang, Shi-Guang; Huang, Cheng; Fu, Cheng-Qi; Zhai, Zao-Cheng; Tan, De-Tong

    1996-01-01

    This is a report of scientific researches at Shanghai Observatory. Topics presented include achievements in the fields of astro-geodynamics, astrophysics, time and frequency, and development of astronomical instrumentation.

  9. The Virtual Observatory: I

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanisch, R. J.

    2014-11-01

    The concept of the Virtual Observatory arose more-or-less simultaneously in the United States and Europe circa 2000. Ten pages of Astronomy and Astrophysics in the New Millennium: Panel Reports (National Academy Press, Washington, 2001), that is, the detailed recommendations of the Panel on Theory, Computation, and Data Exploration of the 2000 Decadal Survey in Astronomy, are dedicated to describing the motivation for, scientific value of, and major components required in implementing the National Virtual Observatory. European initiatives included the Astrophysical Virtual Observatory at the European Southern Observatory, the AstroGrid project in the United Kingdom, and the Euro-VO (sponsored by the European Union). Organizational/conceptual meetings were held in the US at the California Institute of Technology (Virtual Observatories of the Future, June 13-16, 2000) and at ESO Headquarters in Garching, Germany (Mining the Sky, July 31-August 4, 2000; Toward an International Virtual Observatory, June 10-14, 2002). The nascent US, UK, and European VO projects formed the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA) at the June 2002 meeting in Garching, with yours truly as the first chair. The IVOA has grown to a membership of twenty-one national projects and programs on six continents, and has developed a broad suite of data access protocols and standards that have been widely implemented. Astronomers can now discover, access, and compare data from hundreds of telescopes and facilities, hosted at hundreds of organizations worldwide, stored in thousands of databases, all with a single query.

  10. NRAO Astronomer Honored by American Astronomical Society

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2011-01-01

    Dr. Scott Ransom, an astronomer at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO), received the American Astronomical Society's (AAS) Helen B. Warner Prize on January 11, at the society's meeting in Seattle, Washington. The prize is awarded annually for "a significant contribution to observational or theoretical astronomy during the five years preceding the award." Presented by AAS President Debra Elmegreen, the prize recognized Ransom "for his astrophysical insight and innovative technical leadership enabling the discovery of exotic, millisecond and young pulsars and their application for tests of fundamental physics." "Scott has made landmark contributions to our understanding of pulsars and to using them as elegant tools for investigating important areas of fundamental physics. We are very proud that his scientific colleagues have recognized his efforts with this prize," said NRAO Director Fred K.Y. Lo. A staff astronomer at the NRAO since 2004, Ransom has led efforts using the National Science Foundation's Green Bank Telescope and other facilities to study pulsars and use them to make advances in areas of frontier astrophysics such as gravitational waves and particle physics. In 2010, he was on a team that discovered the most massive pulsar yet known, a finding that had implications for the composition of pulsars and details of nuclear physics, gravitational waves, and gamma-ray bursts. Ransom also is a leader in efforts to find and analyze rapidly-rotating millisecond pulsars to make the first direct detection of the gravitational waves predicted by Albert Einstein. In other work, he has advanced observational capabilities for finding millisecond pulsars in globular clusters of stars and investigated how millisecond pulsars are formed. A graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point, NY, Ransom served as an artillery officer in the U.S. Army. After leaving the Army, he earned a Ph.D. at Harvard University in 2001, and was a postdoctoral fellow

  11. Astronomy without astronomers?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stavinschi, Magdalena

    Astronomy in Romania has an old tradition. After half a century of privations and isolation from the rest of the world, we believed that the changes undergone by our country in 1989 (and by the neighbour countries, as well) will be benefit for the Romanian astronomy, too. Indeed, it was, but for a very short period. The young people left the country, one by one, and others cannot accept the low salary offered by a research institute. The economy doesn't allow us to enrich the astronomical endowment. Of course, we cannot close the observatories. We have to find other ways to save the astronomy in this part of Europe, especially in the epoch of the space astronomy.

  12. Tools for Coordinated Planning Between Observatories

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jones, Jeremy; Fishman, Mark; Grella, Vince; Kerbel, Uri; Maks, Lori; Misra, Dharitri; Pell, Vince; Powers, Edward I. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    With the realization of NASA's era of great observatories, there are now more than three space-based telescopes operating in different wavebands. This situation provides astronomers with a unique opportunity to simultaneously observe with multiple observatories. Yet scheduling multiple observatories simultaneously is highly inefficient when compared to observations using only one single observatory. Thus, programs using multiple observatories are limited not due to scientific restrictions, but due to operational inefficiencies. At present, multi-observatory programs are conducted by submitting observing proposals separately to each concerned observatory. To assure that the proposed observations can be scheduled, each observatory's staff has to check that the observations are valid and meet all the constraints for their own observatory; in addition, they have to verify that the observations satisfy the constraints of the other observatories. Thus, coordinated observations require painstaking manual collaboration among the observatory staff at each observatory. Due to the lack of automated tools for coordinated observations, this process is time consuming, error-prone, and the outcome of the requests is not certain until the very end. To increase observatory operations efficiency, such manpower intensive processes need to undergo re-engineering. To overcome this critical deficiency, Goddard Space Flight Center's Advanced Architectures and Automation Branch is developing a prototype effort called the Visual Observation Layout Tool (VOLT). The main objective of the VOLT project is to provide visual tools to help automate the planning of coordinated observations by multiple astronomical observatories, as well as to increase the scheduling probability of all observations.

  13. Really Bad Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hockey, Thomas A.

    2009-01-01

    What happens when even Percival Lowell stops believing in your Mars observations? History can be troubling. This I learned while editing the Biographical Encyclopedia of Astronomers (Springer, 2007). There have been astronomers who do not fit our commonly held, and clung to, conceptual model: a sociological system that sifts out generally like-minded and sensible colleagues. I refer to those individuals who (for at least a time) successfully entered the mainstream profession, but now disturb our worldview that says prosperity as a scientist usually is achieved by a rational being holding certain common values. My List of Shame includes examples from each of the last four centuries. Not "crack pot” cosmologists, these were hard-working observers for whom the end justified the means. And they all got away with it. Each person I discuss was vetted by the professional establishment of the day. Yet you will learn how to be fired from a major observatory, banned from prominent journals. But only after damage to the science is done. Be afraid.

  14. University Observatory, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murdin, P.

    2000-11-01

    The University Observatory of Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität was founded in 1816. Astronomers who worked or graduated at the Munich Observatory include: Fraunhofer, Soldner, Lamont, Seeliger and Karl Schwarzschild. At present four professors and ten staff astronomers work here. Funding comes from the Bavarian Government, the German Science Foundation, and other German and European research progra...

  15. FITSManager: Management of Personal Astronomical Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cui, Chenzhou; Fan, Dongwei; Zhao, Yongheng; Kembhavi, Ajit; He, Boliang; Cao, Zihuang; Li, Jian; Nandrekar, Deoyani

    2011-07-01

    With the increase of personal storage capacity, it is easy to find hundreds to thousands of FITS files in the personal computer of an astrophysicist. Because Flexible Image Transport System (FITS) is a professional data format initiated by astronomers and used mainly in the small community, data management toolkits for FITS files are very few. Astronomers need a powerful tool to help them manage their local astronomical data. Although Virtual Observatory (VO) is a network oriented astronomical research environment, its applications and related technologies provide useful solutions to enhance the management and utilization of astronomical data hosted in an astronomer's personal computer. FITSManager is such a tool to provide astronomers an efficient management and utilization of their local data, bringing VO to astronomers in a seamless and transparent way. FITSManager provides fruitful functions for FITS file management, like thumbnail, preview, type dependent icons, header keyword indexing and search, collaborated working with other tools and online services, and so on. The development of the FITSManager is an effort to fill the gap between management and analysis of astronomical data.

  16. The Russian Virtual Observatory: Recent Developments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malkov, O.; Dluzhnevskaya, O.; Kilpio, E.; Kovaleva, D.

    2006-04-01

    The Russian Virtual Observatory (RVO) is a collaborative effort by Russian astronomy researches and computer scientists to develop astronomical data and tools which have proved to be very useful for the international astronomical community. The paper reviews the current status of the RVO project and planned developments.

  17. Astronomical Data Center Bulletin, volume 1, number 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nagy, T. A.; Warren, W. H., Jr.; Mead, J. M.

    1981-01-01

    Work in progress on astronomical catalogs is presented in 16 papers. Topics cover astronomical data center operations; automatic astronomical data retrieval at GSFC; interactive computer reference search of astronomical literature 1950-1976; formatting, checking, and documenting machine-readable catalogs; interactive catalog of UV, optical, and HI data for 201 Virgo cluster galaxies; machine-readable version of the general catalog of variable stars, third edition; galactic latitude and magnitude distribution of two astronomical catalogs; the catalog of open star clusters; infrared astronomical data base and catalog of infrared observations; the Air Force geophysics laboratory; revised magnetic tape of the N30 catalog of 5,268 standard stars; positional correlation of the two-micron sky survey and Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory catalog sources; search capabilities for the catalog of stellar identifications (CSI) 1979 version; CSI statistics: blue magnitude versus spectral type; catalogs available from the Astronomical Data Center; and status report on machine-readable astronomical catalogs.

  18. Some astronomical challenges for the twenty-first century

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burns, Jack O.

    1992-01-01

    This paper addresses some of the scientific puzzles that astronomers may face in the next century. Four areas in astronomy are discussed in detail. These include cosmology and galaxy formation, active galaxies and quasars, supernovae and stellar remnants, and the formation of stars and planets. A variety of observatories on the Moon are proposed to attack these astronomical challenges.

  19. Amateur and professional astronomers meet at Mill Hill

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poyner, G.

    2000-12-01

    Nearly forty professional and amateur astronomers from around the UK converged on the Mill Hill Observatory of University College, London, on Saturday September 16, for a meeting set up by the Royal Astronomical Society and The Astronomer to promote and exchange ideas on professional?amateur collaboration in astronomy. Fields discussed included variable star research, gamma ray bursters, supernova searching, spectroscopy and minor planet and meteor work.

  20. 195-year history of Mykolayiv Observatory: events and people

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shulga, O. V.; Yanishevska, L. M.

    2017-02-01

    The basic stages of the history of the Mykolaiv Astronomical Observatory are shown. The main results of the Observatory activities are presented by the catalogs of star positions, major and minor planets in the Solar system, space objects in the Earth orbit. The information on the qualitative and quantitative structure of the Observatory, cooperation with the observatories of Ukraine and foreign countries as well as major projects carried out in the Observatory is provided.

  1. Services for Astronomical Data Management and Sharing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kundera, Tomasz; Stachowski, Greg; Wierzbowski, Arkadiusz; Borkowski, Jerzy; Ciecielag, Pawel

    2014-12-01

    As part of the AstroGrid-PL project we have implemented a large scale data management system for the Polish astronomical community within the framework of PLGrid Plus project with built-in metadata services, replication and distributed storage based on the well-established iRODS middleware. In parallel we have implemented the Polish Virtual Observatory, which provides access, search, retrieval and in situ processing for this data using the protocols and standards established by the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA). These standards are already in use at astronomical facilities across the globe, and implementing them within the framework of AstroGrid-PL and PLGrid Plus project enables us not only to provide advanced data retrieval services to our users, but also to leverage a large body of existing astronomical data analysis software and give our users access to foreign data resources provided on the same principles.

  2. Future Directions for Astronomical Image Display

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mandel, Eric

    1997-01-01

    In our "Future Directions for Astronomical Image Display" project, the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) and the National Optical Astronomy Observatories (NOAO) will evolve our existing image display software into a fully extensible, cross-platform image display server that can run stand-alone or be integrated seamlessly into astronomical analysis systems. We will build a Plug-in Image Extension (PIE) server for astronomy, consisting of a modular image display engine that can be customized using "plug-in" technology. We will create plug-ins that reproduce all the current functionality of SAOtng. We also will devise a messaging system and a set of distributed, shared data objects to support integrating the PIE server into astronomical analysis systems. Finally, we will migrate our PIE server, plug-ins, and messaging software from Unix and the X Window System to a platform-independent architecture that utilizes cross-platform technology such as Tcl/Tk or Java.

  3. The Astronomical Photographic Data Archive

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cline, J. Donald; Barker, T.; Castelaz, M.

    2010-01-01

    Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute is the home of the Astronomical Photographic Data Archive (APDA), a national effort to preserve, archive, and digitize astronomical photographic plate collections. APDA was formed in 2007 and presently holds more than 100,000 plates and films from more than a dozen observatory collections. While the photographic data pre-dates modern observational data taken with electronic instruments, it is nevertheless of extremely high quality. When one considers 100,000 plates and films in the APDA collection, some with 100's or 1000's of objects per plate, and plates taken over 100 years the value of the data in APDA becomes apparent. In addition to the astronomical photographic data collections, APDA also possesses two high precision glass plate measuring machines, GAMMA I and GAMMA II that were built for NASA and the Space Telescope Science Institute. The measuring machines were used by a team of scientists under the leadership of the late Dr. Barry Lasker to develop the Guide Star Catalog and Digitized Sky Survey that guide and direct the Hubble Space Telescope. We will describe the current set of collections, plans for the measuring machines, and the efforts that have been made to assure preservation of plate collections.

  4. Astronomical cooperation

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-02-20

    The events surrounding the Big Bang were so cataclysmic that they left an indelible imprint on the fabric of the cosmos. We can detect these scars today by observing the oldest light in the Universe. As it was created nearly 14 billion years ago, this light — which exists now as weak microwave radiation and is thus named the cosmic microwave background (CMB) — has now expanded to permeate the entire cosmos, filling it with detectable photons. The CMB can be used to probe the cosmos via something known as the Sunyaev-Zel’dovich (SZ) effect, which was first observed over 30 years ago. We detect the CMB here on Earth when its constituent microwave photons travel to us through space. On their journey to us, they can pass through galaxy clusters that contain high-energy electrons. These electrons give the photons a tiny boost of energy. Detecting these boosted photons through our telescopes is challenging but important — they can help astronomers to understand some of the fundamental properties of the Universe, such as the location and distribution of dense galaxy clusters. The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope observed one of most massive known galaxy clusters, RX J1347.5–1145, seen in this Picture of the Week, as part of the Cluster Lensing And Supernova survey with Hubble (CLASH). This observation of the cluster, 5 billion light-years from Earth, helped the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) in Chile to study the cosmic microwave background using the thermal Sunyaev-Zel’dovich effect. The observations made with ALMA are visible as the blue-purple hues. Links ESO Picture of the Week RX J1347.5–1145 seen by Hubble only

  5. The Instruments of Dudley Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gino, M. C.

    2002-12-01

    Dudley Observatory, founded in 1852, is the nation's oldest independent organization dedicated to astronomical research and education. While Dudley no longer operates a physical observatory, it is home to a number of historically important scientific instruments and telescopes. Dudley's first operating telescope, a Clark Comet-seeker, remains in Dudley's collection today. This 4-inch refractor provided the first discovery of a comet by a Dudley astronomer in 1857 and is one of only four telescopes of this size produced by Alvan Clark. Also in Dudley's collection is the Olcott Meridian Circle which was the primary working telescope at the observatory for over 75 years. This telescope, made by Pistor & Martins and which operated both at the Dudley Observatory in Albany, NY and the San Luis Observatory in Argentina, was used to conduct all of the observations for the Preliminary General Catalog of 6788 Stars (1908) and the General Catalog of 33,343 Stars (1937). The gem of Dudley's collection is the Pruyn Equatorial Telescope, built by the Warner and Swasey Company and equipped with a 12-inch lens made by John Brashear. It was installed in 1893 to conduct both research observations and public observing sessions. After remaining in storage for many decades, this historic telescope will soon resume its role after being refurbished and installed at the Arunah Hill Natural Science Center in Cummington, MA. While Dudley retains its interest in astronomical instruments it has also moved into the areas of space studies and astronomical education. The key projects in the areas of instrumentation and astronomical outreach, which include the instruments above as well as the Rising Star Internship and Space Campership educational programs, will be detailed in the remainder of this paper.

  6. The Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cline, J. Donald

    2015-01-01

    The path of the total solar eclipse across the United States on August 21, 2017 crosses the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI) located in western North Carolina. The partial eclipse begins at about 17:08 UT, followed by the nearly 2 minute total eclipse which begins at about 18:37 UT. The PARI campus includes radio and optical telescopes, as well as earth science instruments that include a seismometer, geomagnetometer, EarthScope Plate Boundary Observatory, time standards, and several weather stations. The instruments stream data to the PARI website and will be available for the eclipse. In anticipation of the 2017 solar eclipse, we present the instruments and infrastructure of the PARI campus. We invite astronomers to explore the use of the PARI campus as a site for their own instruments and/or the use of instruments already located at PARI.

  7. Autonomous Infrastructure for Observatory Operations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seaman, R.

    This is an era of rapid change from ancient human-mediated modes of astronomical practice to a vision of ever larger time domain surveys, ever bigger "big data", to increasing numbers of robotic telescopes and astronomical automation on every mountaintop. Over the past decades, facets of a new autonomous astronomical toolkit have been prototyped and deployed in support of numerous space missions. Remote and queue observing modes have gained significant market share on the ground. Archives and data-mining are becoming ubiquitous; astroinformatic techniques and virtual observatory standards and protocols are areas of active development. Astronomers and engineers, planetary and solar scientists, and researchers from communities as diverse as particle physics and exobiology are collaborating on a vast range of "multi-messenger" science. What then is missing?

  8. Astronomical education in Armenia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harutyunian, H. A.

    2006-08-01

    First ideas on astronomy pupils in Armenia get at elementary schools. Astronomy as a distinct subject is taught at all secondary schools in the country. Teaching is conducted according to a unified program elaborated jointly by professional astronomers and astronomy teachers. Unfortunately only one hour per week is allotted for teaching astronomy which obviously is not enough workload to hire specialized astronomy teachers at every school and at many schools this subject is tutored by non-specialists. Many schools partly compensate this lack organizing visits to the Byurakan observatory (BAO) for pupils where they also attend short lectures on astronomy. In some schools facultative training is organized faced to the amateurs purposive for deeper learning astronomy. During recent years annual competitions for revealing gifted pupils in astronomy are organized. These competitions have three rounds, namely, in schools, in districts and final one as a rule holds at BAO. The country winners successfully participate and win prestigious prizes in the international astronomical Olympiads as well. At Yerevan State University (YSU) a department for astrophysics was set up in 1946 operating to date. This department trains specialists for a career in astrophysics. Only one or two students graduate from this department yearly at present while in 80s a dozen of specialists were trained every year. BAO serves as the scientific base for the students of YSU as well and a number of staff members from BAO conduct special courses for YSU students. YSU provides Master's degree in astrophysics, and BAO is granting Doctor's (PhD) degree since 70s of last century.

  9. How I Became an Astronomer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Maran, Stephen P.

    2001-01-01

    Life as an astronomer has taken me to view eclipses of the Sun from the Gaspe' Peninsula to the Pacific Ocean and the China and Coral Seas, and to observe the stars at observatories across the USA and as far south as Chile. I've also enjoyed working with NASA's telescopes in space, including the Hubble Space Telescope and the International Ultraviolet Explorer. It seems funny to reflect that it all began in the Sixth Grade by a fluke - the consequence of a hoax letter whose author I never identified.

  10. Early German Plans for a Southern Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wolfschmidt, Gudrun

    As early as the 18th and 19th centuries, French and English observers were active in South Africa. Around the beginning of the 20th century the Heidelberg astronomer Max Wolf (1863-1932) proposed a southern observatory. In 1907 Hermann Carl Vogel (1841-1907), director of the Astrophysical Observatory Potsdam, suggested a southern station in Spain. His ideas for building an observatory in Windhuk for photographing the sky and measuring the solar constant were taken over by the Göttingen astronomers. In 1910 Karl Schwarzschild (1873-1916), after having visited the observatories in America, pointed out the usefulness of an observatory in South West Africa, where it would have better weather than in Germany and also give access to the southern sky. Seeing tests were begun in 1910 by Potsdam astronomers, but WW I stopped the plans. In 1928 Erwin Finlay-Freundlich (1885-1964), inspired by the Hamburg astronomer Walter Baade (1893-1960), worked out a detailed plan for a southern observatory with a reflecting telescope, spectrographs and an astrograph with an objective prism. Paul Guthnick (1879-1947), director of the Berlin observatory, in cooperation with APO Potsdam and Hamburg, made a site survey to Africa in 1929 and found the conditions in Windhuk to be ideal. Observations were started in the 1930s by Berlin and Breslau astronomers, but were stopped by WW II. In the 1950s, astronomers from Hamburg and The Netherlands renewed the discussion in the framework of European cooperation, and this led to the founding of ESO in 1963, as is well described by Blaauw (1991). Blaauw, Adriaan: ESO's Early History. The European Southern Observatory from Concept to Reality. Garching bei München: ESO 1991.

  11. William Doberck - double star astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    MacKeown, P. Kevin

    2007-03-01

    We outline the role of astronomy in the career of William Doberck (1852-1941). After taking a PhD in astronomy at the University of Jena in 1873, he accepted a position as superintendent of Markree Observatory in the west of Ireland. There he refurbished the great 13-inch refractor and spent nine years observing mostly double star systems, paying only such attention to meteorological monitoring as was required of his position. In 1883 he became the founding Director of a new observatory in Hong Kong, a post which he held for 24 years. His frustrations in attempting to continue his purely astronomical work, not assuaged by his combative and prickly personality, and in the face of the strictly practical demands of that mercantile society for comprehensive storm forecasting, are described. Finally, his observations in retirement in England, and his overall contribution to astronomy, are summarised.

  12. Preservation and maintenance of the astronomical sites in Armenia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, A. M.

    2008-01-01

    Astronomy in Armenia was popular since ancient times. There are signs of astronomical observations coming from a few thousands years ago. Two ancient observatories, Karahunge and Metzamor are especially well known. Karahunge is the Armenian twin of the Stonehenge and is even older. However, there is no proper attention from the state authorities and efforts are needed for preservation of such historical-astronomical monuments. The Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory (BAO) is the modern famous Armenian observatory founded in 1946 by the outstanding scientist Victor Ambartsumian. It was one of the world astronomical centres in 1950-s to 1970-s, and at present is the largest observatory in the Middle East area. As the ancient astronomical sites, Byurakan also needs a proper attitude from the state authorities and corresponding international organizations to preserve its values and importance for the present and future astronomical activities in the region, including its rich observational archive, telescopes, and human resources. Despite all the difficulties, the Armenian astronomers keep high international level of research and display various activities organizing international meetings and schools, preparing new young generation for the future research. The Armenian Astronomical Society (ArAS) is an affiliated member of EAS. Armenia has its Virtual Observatory project (ArVO) as well. The next Joint European and National Astronomy Meeting (JENAM-2007) will be held in Yerevan, Armenia, in August 2007. There are plans to organize astronomical tours to Armenia for making observations from various sites, including the ancient observatories. The future of astronomy in Armenia strongly depends on all of this activities and the proper attention both from state authorities and society.

  13. DSN Transient Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuiper, T. B. H.; Monroe, R. M.; White, L. A.; Miro, C. Garcia; Levin, S. M.; Majid, W. A.; Soriano, M.

    2016-03-01

    The Deep Space Network (DSN) Transient Observatory (DTO) is a signal processing facility that can monitor up to four DSN downlink bands for astronomically interesting signals. The monitoring is done commensally with reception of deep space mission telemetry. The initial signal processing is done with two CASPERa ROACH1 boards, each handling one or two baseband signals. Each ROACH1 has a 10 GBe interface with a GPU-equipped Debian Linux workstation for additional processing. The initial science programs include monitoring Mars for electrostatic discharges, radio spectral lines, searches for fast radio bursts and pulsars and SETI. The facility will be available to the scientific community through a peer review process.

  14. TMT in the Astronomical Landscape of the 2020s

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dickinson, Mark; Inami, Hanae

    2014-07-01

    Thirty Meter Telescope Observatory and NOAO will host the second TMT Science Forum at Loews Ventana Canyon Resort in Tucson, Arizona. The TMT Science Forum is an an annual gathering of astronomers, educators, and observatory staff, who meet to explore TMT science, instrumentation, observatory operations, archiving and data processing, astronomy education, and science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) issues. It is an opportunity for astronomers from the international TMT partners and from the US-at-large community to learn about the observatory status, discuss and plan cutting-edge science, establish collaborations, and to help shape the future of TMT. One important theme for this year's Forum will be the synergy between TMT and other facilities in the post-2020 astronomical landscape. There will be plenary sessions, an instrumentation workshop, topical science sessions and meetings of the TMT International Science Development Teams (ISDTs).

  15. Coronagraph for astronomical imaging and spectrophotometry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vilas, Faith; Smith, Bradford A.

    1987-01-01

    A coronagraph designed to minimize scattered light in astronomical observations caused by the structure of the primary mirror, secondary mirror, and secondary support structure of a Cassegrainian telescope is described. Direct (1:1) and reducing (2.7:1) imaging of astronomical fields are possible. High-quality images are produced. The coronagraph can be used with either a two-dimensional charge-coupled device or photographic film camera. The addition of transmission dispersing optics converts the coronagraph into a low-resolution spectrograph. The instrument is modular and portable for transport to different observatories.

  16. The Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cline, J. D.; Castelaz, M. W.; Osborne, C. S.; Powers, J.

    1999-12-01

    The Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI), is a not-for-profit foundation dedicated to providing research, study, and educational access to optical and radio astronomy for a broad cross section of users. Pre-college through post-graduate students have the opportunity to work and learn with full time and visiting astronomers while performing research using a variety of advanced astronomical techniques. Additional access will be provided on a remote basis through the Internet to grades K-12 and the public. Located about 50 km west of Asheville, North Carolina, PARI maintains a radio observatory with two 26-m radio telescopes for the study of radiation from 21 cm through 2 cm, a 17-30 MHz log periodic pair antennae dedicated to the study of Jupiter-Io magnetic field interaction, a 12-m precision surface antenna for the study of radiation from 21 cm through 0.6 cm, a 4.6-m dish for the study of radiation from 21 cm through 3 cm, and an all-sky survey 0.20-m remote controllable optical telescope. Details of the radio telescopes and procedures for using the existing facilities and future plans at PARI will be described.

  17. Carnegie Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murdin, P.

    2000-11-01

    The Carnegie Observatories were founded in 1902 by George Ellery Hale. Their first facility was the MOUNT WILSON OBSERVATORY, located in the San Gabriel Mountains above Pasadena, California. Originally a solar observatory, it moved into stellar, galactic and extragalactic research with the construction of the 60 in (1.5 m), and 100 in (2.5 m) telescopes, each of which was the largest in the world...

  18. Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory as Cultural Centre

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, A. M.; Farmanyan, S. V.

    2017-07-01

    NAS RA V. Ambartsumian Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory is presented as a cultural centre for Armenia and the Armenian nation in general. Besides being scientific and educational centre, the Observatory is famous for its unique architectural ensemble, rich botanical garden and world of birds, as well as it is one of the most frequently visited sightseeing of Armenia. In recent years, the Observatory has also taken the initiative of the coordination of the Cultural Astronomy in Armenia and in this field, unites the astronomers, historians, archaeologists, ethnographers, culturologists, literary critics, linguists, art historians and other experts. Keywords: Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory, architecture, botanic garden, tourism, Cultural Astronomy.

  19. ESO's Two Observatories Merge

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2005-02-01

    , a unique instrument capable of measuring stellar radial velocities with an unsurpassed accuracy better than 1 m/s, making it a very powerful tool for the discovery of extra-solar planets. In addition, astronomers have also access to the 2.2-m ESO/MPG telescope with its Wide Field Imager camera. A new control room, the RITZ (Remote Integrated Telescope Zentrum), allows operating all three ESO telescopes at La Silla from a single place. The La Silla Observatory is also the first world-class observatory to have been granted certification for the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 9001 Quality Management System. Moreover, the infrastructure of La Silla is still used by many of the ESO member states for targeted projects such as the Swiss 1.2-m Euler telescope and the robotic telescope specialized in the follow-up of gamma-ray bursts detected by satellites, the Italian REM (Rapid Eye Mount). In addition, La Silla is in charge of the APEX (Atacama Pathfinder Experiment) 12-m sub-millimetre telescope which will soon start routine observations at Chajnantor, the site of the future Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA). The APEX project is a collaboration between the Max Planck Society in Germany, Onsala Observatory in Sweden and ESO. ESO also operates Paranal, home of the Very Large Telescope (VLT) and the VLT Interferometer (VLTI). Antu, the first 8.2-m Unit Telescope of the VLT, saw First Light in May 1998, starting what has become a revolution in European astronomy. Since then, the three other Unit Telescopes - Kueyen, Melipal and Yepun - have been successfully put into operation with an impressive suite of the most advanced astronomical instruments. The interferometric mode of the VLT (VLTI) is also operational and fully integrated in the VLT data flow system. In the VLTI mode, one state-of-the-art instrument is already available and another will follow soon. With its remarkable resolution and unsurpassed surface area, the VLT is at the forefront of

  20. The Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cline, J. Donald; Castelaz, M.

    2009-01-01

    Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute is a not-for-profit foundation located at a former NASA tracking station in the Pisgah National Forest in western North Carolina. PARI is celebrating its 10th year. During its ten years, PARI has developed and implemented innovative science education programs. The science education programs are hands-on experimentally based, mixing disciplines in astronomy, computer science, earth and atmospheric science, engineering, and multimedia. The basic tools for the educational programs include a 4.6-m radio telescope accessible via the Internet, a StarLab planetarium, the Astronomical Photographic Data Archive (APDA), a distributed computing online environment to classify stars called SCOPE, and remotely accessible optical telescopes. The PARI 200 acre campus has a 4.6-m, a 12-m and two 26-m radio telescopes, optical solar telescopes, a Polaris monitoring telescope, 0.4-m and 0.35-m optical research telescopes, and earth and atmospheric science instruments. PARI is also the home of APDA, a repository for astronomical photographic plate collections which will eventually be digitized and made available online. PARI has collaborated with visiting scientists who have developed their research with PARI telescopes and lab facilities. Current experiments include: the Dedicated Interferometer for Rapid Variability (Dennison et al. 2007, Astronomical and Astrophysical Transactions, 26, 557); the Plate Boundary Observatory operated by UNAVCO; the Clemson University Fabry-Perot Interferometers (Meriwether 2008, Journal of Geophysical Research, submitted) measuring high velocity winds and temperatures in the Thermosphere, and the Western Carolina University - PARI variable star program. Current status of the education and research programs and instruments will be presented. Also, development plans will be reviewed. Development plans include the greening of PARI with the installation of solar panels to power the optical telescopes, a new distance

  1. Division B Commission 6: Astronomical Telegrams

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamaoka, H.; Green, D. W. E.; Samus, N. N.; Aksnes, K.; Gilmore, A. C.; Nakano, S.; Sphar, T.; Tichá, J.; Williams, G. V.

    2016-04-01

    IAU Commission 6 ``Astronomical Telegrams'' had a single business meeting during Honolulu General Assembly of the IAU. It took place on Tuesday, 11 August 2015. The meeting was attended by Hitoshi Yamaoka (President), Daniel Green (Director of the Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams, CBAT, via Skype), Steven Chesley (JPL), Paul Chodas (JPL), Alan Gilmore (Canterbury University), Shinjiro Kouzuma (Chukyo University), Paolo Mazzali (Co-Chair of the Supernova Working Group), Elena Pian (Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa), Marion Schmitz (chair IAU Working Group Designations + NED), David Tholen (University of Hawaii), Jana Ticha (Klet Observatory), Milos Tichy (Klet Observatory), Giovanni Valsecchi (INAF\\slash Italy), Gareth Williams (Minor Planet Center). Apologies: Nikolai Samus (General Catalogue of Variable Stars, GCVS).

  2. Asteroids Observed from GMARS and Santana Observatories: 2011 October- December

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stephens, Robert D.

    2012-04-01

    Lightcurves of six asteroids were obtained from Santana Observatory and Goat Mountain Astronomical Research Station (GMARS): 555 Norma, 1028 Lydina, 1123 Shapleya, 1178 Irmela, 3436 Ibadinov, and 6042 Cheshirecat.

  3. Asteroids Observed from GMARS and Sanana Observatories: 2011 April - June

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stephens, Robert D.

    2011-10-01

    Lightcurves of four asteroids were obtained from Santana Observatory and Goat Mountain Astronomical Research Station (GMARS) from 2011 April to June: 948 Jucunda, 1183 Jutta, 1775 Zimmerwald and 3492 Petra-Pepi.

  4. Asteroids Observed from GMARS and Santana Observatories: 2011 July - September

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stephens, Robert D.

    2012-01-01

    Lightcurves of three asteroids were obtained from Santana Observatory and Goat Mountain Astronomical Research Station (GMARS) from 2011 July to September: 688 Melanie, 1077 Campanula, and (42265) 2001 QL69.

  5. Current Status of the Russian Virtual Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malkov, Oleg Y.; Dluzhnevskaya, Olga B.; Kilpio, Elena Y.; Kilpio, Alexander A.; Kovaleva, Dana A.

    The Russian Virtual Observatory (RVO) has been officially recognized as one of the key projects of the Scientific Council on Astronomy of the Russian Academy of Sciences since December 2001. The ultimate goal of the RVO initiative is to integrate resources of astronomical data accumulated in Russian observatories and institutions and to provide Russian data to the rest of the world. One of the principal goals of the project is to provide Russian researchers with on-line access to the rich volumes of data and metadata that have been and will continue to be produced by astronomical survey projects. RVO architecture main tasks and roadmap are discussed in the presentation.

  6. DVD Database Astronomical Manuscripts in Georgia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simonia, I.; Simonia, Ts.; Abuladze, T.; Chkhikvadze, N.; Samkurashvili, L.; Pataridze, K.

    2016-06-01

    Little known and unknown Georgian, Persian, and Arabic astronomical manuscripts of IX-XIX centuries are kept in the centers, archives, and libraries of Georgia. These manuscripts has a form of treaties, handbooks, texts, tables, fragments, and comprises various theories, cosmological models, star catalogs, calendars, methods of observations. We investigated this large material and published DVD database Astronomical Manuscripts in Georgia. This unique database contains information about astronomical manuscripts as original works. It contains also descriptions of Georgian translations of Byzantine, Arabic and other sources. The present paper is dedicated to description of obtained results and DVD database. Copies of published DVD database are kept in collections of the libraries of: Ilia State University, Georgia; Royal Observatory, Edinburgh, UK; Congress of the USA, and in other centers.

  7. Astronomical Polarimeters and Features of Polarimetric Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morozhenko, A. V.; Vid'machenko, A. P.

    2005-01-01

    We present a general description of ground-based astronomical polarimeters, and provide a detailed description of the spectropolarimeter of the Main astronomical observatory (MAO) of a National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine (NASU). Using a polarization modulator of a rotating quarter-wave phase plate (FP) allows us to measure the parameters of linear and circular polarization simultaneously. In 1983 O. I. Bugaenko with the colleagues from MAO of NASU produced an automatic astronomical spectropolarimeter (ASP), which used a continuous rotation of polarizer with frequency of 61 Hz. Observations in two beam modes allowed it to accommodate changes of transparency of the Earth's atmosphere, air mass the of observational object, inexactness of guiding and displacement from an optical axis because of atmospheric turbulence. In 1995 the spectropolarimeter was upgraded and its spectral interval expanded to 1 micron. Sources of errors and methods of their elimination are described.

  8. Sierra Remote Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ringwald, Fred; Morgan, G. E.; Barnes, F. S., III; Goldman, D. S.; Helm, M. R.; Mortfield, P.; Quattrocchi, K. B.; Van Vleet, L.

    2009-05-01

    We report the founding of a new facility for astrophotography and small-telescope science. Sierra Remote Observatories are eight small observatories at 4610' altitude in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California. The sky brightness during New Moon typically rates 3 on the Bortle scale. Typical seeing is 1.2", with a one-sigma range between 1.0" and 1.6", measured during 2007 June-September. All eight observatories are operated by remote control over the Internet, from as far away as Toronto and South Carolina. The telescopes range in aperture from 106 mm to 16 inches. Color images have so far been published in several magazines (Astronomy, Practical Astronomer, and Sky & Telescope) and on NASA's Astronomy Picture of the Day website. Science programs include time-resolved photometry of cataclysmic variables including the discovery of a 3.22-hour periodicity in the light curve of the nova-like V378 Pegasi, the serendipitous discovery of a previously undesignated spherical bubble in Cygnus, the discovery of three asteroids, and monitoring of Comet Lulin.

  9. SOFIA: Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Erickson, E. F.; Davidson, J. A.

    1993-01-01

    SOFIA, (Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy) is a planned 2.5 meter telescope to be installed in a Boeing 747 aircraft and operated at altitudes from 41,000 to 46,000 feet. It will permit routine measurement of infrared radiation inaccessible from the ground-based sites, and observation of astronomical objects and transient events from anywhere in the world. The concept is based on 18 years of experience with NASA's Kuiper Airborne Observatory (KAO), which SOFIA would replace.

  10. Protection of the Guillermo Haro Astrophysical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carrasco, E.; Carraminana, A. P.

    The Guillermo Haro Astrophysical Observatory, with a 2m telescope, is one of only two professional observatories in Mexico. The observatory, run by the InstitutoNacional de Astrofisica, Optica y Electronica (INAOE), is located in the north of Mexico, in Cananea, Sonora. Since 1995 the observatory has faced the potential threat of pollution by an open cast mine to be opened at 3kms from the observatory. In the absence of national or regional laws enforcing protection to astronomical sites in Mexico, considerable effort has been needed to guarantee the conditions of the site. We present the studies carried out to ensure the protection of the Guillermo Haro Observatory from pollution due to dust, light and vibrations.

  11. Wise Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murdin, P.

    2000-11-01

    Wise Observatory, in Mitzpe Ramon, Israel, is owned and operated by Tel Aviv University, and has a well-equipped 1 m telescope. Since construction in 1971, the large percentage of clear nights at its desert site and its unique longitude have made the observatory particularly useful for long-term monitoring projects (e.g. reverberation mapping of quasars and active galaxies), and as a part of glo...

  12. Tonantzintla's Observatory Astronomy Teaching Laboratory project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garfias, F.; Bernal, A.; Martínez, L. A.; Sánchez, L.; Hernández, H.; Langarica, R.; Iriarte, A.; Peña, J. H.; Tinoco, S.; Ángeles, F.

    2008-07-01

    In the last two years the National Observatory at Tonantzintla Puebla, México (OAN Tonantzintla), has been undergoing several facilities upgrades in order to bring to the observatory suitable conditions to operate as a modern Observational Astronomy Teaching Laboratory. In this paper, we present the management, requirement definition and project advances. We made a quantitative diagnosis about of the functionality of the Tonantzintla Observatory (mainly based in the 1m f/15 telescope) to take aim to educational objectives. Through this project we are taking the steps to correct, to actualize and to optimize the observatory astronomical instrumentation according to modern techniques of observation. We present the design and the first actions in order to get a better and efficient use of the main astronomical instrumentation, as well as, the telescope itself, for the undergraduate, postgraduate levels Observacional Astronomy students and outreach publics programs for elementary school. The project includes the development of software and hardware components based in as a common framework for the project management. The Observatory is located at 150 km away from the headquarters at the Instituto de Astronomía, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (IAUNAM), and one of the goals is use this infrastructure for a Remote Observatory System.

  13. COBE Astronomical Databases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Freedman, I.; Raugh, A. C.; Cheng, E. S.

    A project to store and convert external astronomical survey maps to the Cosmic Background Explorer (COBE) spacecraft pixelization is described. Established software is reused in order to reduce development costs. The proposed packages and systems include the Image Reduction and Analysis Facility (IRAF), Interactive Data Language Astronomy Library (IDL), the FITSIO data transfer package and the Astronomical Image Processing System (AIPS). The software structure of the astronomical databases, projected conversion schemes, quality assurance procedures and outstanding problems will be discussed.

  14. The Great Astronomical Ear.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hiatt, Blanchard

    1980-01-01

    Presents a description of the world's largest radio/radar antenna, the Areciba Observatory in Puerto Rico. Activities at the observatory are discussed as well as the scientific research in the field of radio astronomy. (SA)

  15. The Great Astronomical Ear.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hiatt, Blanchard

    1980-01-01

    Presents a description of the world's largest radio/radar antenna, the Areciba Observatory in Puerto Rico. Activities at the observatory are discussed as well as the scientific research in the field of radio astronomy. (SA)

  16. Enhanced management of personal astronomical data with FITSManager

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cui, Chenzhou; Fan, Dongwei; Zhao, Yongheng; Kembhavi, Ajit; He, Boliang; Cao, Zihuang; Li, Jian; Nandrekar, Deoyani

    2012-02-01

    Although the roles of data centers and computing centers are becoming more and more important, and on-line research is becoming the mainstream for astronomy, individual research based on locally hosted data is still very common. With the increase of personal storage capacity, it is easy to find hundreds to thousands of FITS files in the personal computer of an astrophysicist. Because Flexible Image Transport System (FITS) is a professional data format initiated by astronomers and used mainly in the small community, data management toolkits for FITS files are very few. Astronomers need a powerful tool to help them manage their local astronomical data. Although Virtual Observatory (VO) is a network oriented astronomical research environment, its applications and related technologies provide useful solutions to enhance the management and utilization of astronomical data hosted in an astronomer's personal computer. FITSManager is such a tool to provide astronomers an efficient management and utilization of their local data, bringing VO to astronomers in a seamless and transparent way. FITSManager provides fruitful functions for FITS file management, like thumbnail, preview, type dependent icons, header keyword indexing and search, collaborated working with other tools and on-line services, and so on. The development of the FITSManager is an effort to fill the gap between management and analysis of astronomical data.

  17. Biographical index ``Astronomers of Ukraine'' at the UkrVO portal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vavilova, I. B.; Artemenko, T. G.; Pakuliak, L. K.

    2014-02-01

    The new electronic database developed by the authors and titled "Astronomers of Ukraine" is described as a source of the main biographical data on astronomers of Ukraine from the 15th century until the beginning of the 21st century. The database is an upgrading component of the Ukrainian Virtual Observatory portal and contains the main biobibliographical data and papers concerning astronomers of Ukraine, as well as links to their publications. The existing biographical sources about astronomers in the world are discussed briefly. A list of the principal publications about astronomers of Ukraine is given.

  18. Nicolaus Copernicus Astronomical Center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murdin, P.

    2000-11-01

    Nicolaus Copernicus Astronomical Center is the largest astronomical institution in Poland, located in Warsaw and founded in 1956. At present it is a government-funded research institute supervised by the Polish Academy of Sciences and licensed by the government of Poland to award PhD and doctor habilitatus degrees in astronomy and astrophysics. In September 1999 staff included 21 senior scientist...

  19. Astronomical Software Directory Service

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hanisch, R. J.; Payne, H.; Hayes, J.

    1998-01-01

    This is the final report on the development of the Astronomical Software Directory Service (ASDS), a distributable, searchable, WWW-based database of software packages and their related documentation. ASDS provides integrated access to 56 astronomical software packages, with more than 16,000 URL's indexed for full-text searching.

  20. Reengineering observatory operations for the time domain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seaman, Robert L.; Vestrand, W. T.; Hessman, Frederic V.

    2014-07-01

    Observatories are complex scientific and technical institutions serving diverse users and purposes. Their telescopes, instruments, software, and human resources engage in interwoven workflows over a broad range of timescales. These workflows have been tuned to be responsive to concepts of observatory operations that were applicable when various assets were commissioned, years or decades in the past. The astronomical community is entering an era of rapid change increasingly characterized by large time domain surveys, robotic telescopes and automated infrastructures, and - most significantly - of operating modes and scientific consortia that span our individual facilities, joining them into complex network entities. Observatories must adapt and numerous initiatives are in progress that focus on redesigning individual components out of the astronomical toolkit. New instrumentation is both more capable and more complex than ever, and even simple instruments may have powerful observation scripting capabilities. Remote and queue observing modes are now widespread. Data archives are becoming ubiquitous. Virtual observatory standards and protocols and astroinformatics data-mining techniques layered on these are areas of active development. Indeed, new large-aperture ground-based telescopes may be as expensive as space missions and have similarly formal project management processes and large data management requirements. This piecewise approach is not enough. Whatever challenges of funding or politics facing the national and international astronomical communities it will be more efficient - scientifically as well as in the usual figures of merit of cost, schedule, performance, and risks - to explicitly address the systems engineering of the astronomical community as a whole.

  1. Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory as Cultural Centre

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, A. M.; Farmanyan, S. V.

    2016-12-01

    NAS RA V. Ambartsumian Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory is presented as a cultural centre for Armenia and the Armenian nation in general. Besides being scientific and educational centre, the Observatory is famous for its unique architectural ensemble, rich botanical garden and world of birds, as well as it is one of the most frequently visited sightseeing of Armenia. In recent years, the Observatory has also taken the initiative of the coordination of the Cultural Astronomy in Armenia and in this field, unites the astronomers, historians, archaeologists, ethnographers, culturologists, literary critics, linguists, art historians and other experts.

  2. Virtual Observatory Science Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McGlynn, Tom

    2005-01-01

    Many Virtual-Observatory-based applications are now available to astronomers for use in their research. These span data discovery, access, visualization and analysis. Tools can quickly gather and organize information from sites around the world to help in planning a response to a gamma-ray burst, help users pick filters to isolate a desired feature, make an average template for z=2 AGN, select sources based upon information in many catalogs, or correlate massive distributed databases. Using VO protocols, the reach of existing software tools and packages can be greatly extended, allowing users to find and access remote information almost as conveniently as local data. The talk highlights just a few of the tools available to scientists, describes how both large and small scale projects can use existing tools, and previews some of the new capabilities that will be available in the next few years.

  3. Astronomical Equipment for Amateurs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mobberley, Martin

    Telescopes - refractors and reflectors - are the main items of equipment used by almost every amateur astronomer. The purpose of astronomical telescopes is to collect and focus more light than the human eye can, forming an image that can be viewed, photographed, or analysed. Astronomical Equipment for Amateurs makes buying and using both telescopes and their ancillary instruments easy for astronomers of all abilities. It begins by looking at the advantages and disadvantages of the basic types of refractors, reflectors, mountings and accessories. Observation techniques are also included, along with the use of filters, (colour, anti-pollution and nebula), types of photography (piggy-back, prime focus and eyepiece projection), and also CCD imaging (including types of CCD camera and their advantages and disadvantages compared to photography). Martin Mobberley provides a fascinating insight into astronomical software.

  4. The Astronomical League

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stevens, J. A.; Stevens, B. L.

    2000-10-01

    Founded over fifty years ago, the League is the largest general astronomy society in the world. It is a recognized non-profit, educational organization, promoting the science of astronomy. This includes astronomical education, research, individual observing of the heavens and coordination between the amateur and professional astronomy communities. The Astronomical League publishes a quarterly newsletter, the "Reflector", which details amateur activities and amateur collaboration with professional astronomers. The League's Observing Clubs hone the skills of the amateur astronomer in using their telescopes. These clubs provide awards to encourge observing and learning the sky. More general awards are presented to encourage amateur astronomy and the science of astronomy. These include the National Young Astronomer Award, amd the Horkheimer Planetary Imaging Award. They also sponsor conventions on both the National and Regional levels. This year's national is in Ventura, California, next year, near Washington, D.C.

  5. Keele Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Theodorus van Loon, Jacco; Albinson, James; Bagnall, Alan; Bryant, Lian; Caisley, Dave; Doody, Stephen; Johnson, Ian; Klimczak, Paul; Maddison, Ron; Robinson, StJohn; Stretch, Matthew; Webb, John

    2015-08-01

    Keele Observatory was founded by Dr. Ron Maddison in 1962, on the hill-top campus of Keele University in central England, hosting the 1876 Grubb 31cm refractor from Oxford Observatory. It since acquired a 61cm research reflector, a 15cm Halpha solar telescope and a range of other telescopes. Run by a group of volunteering engineers and students under directorship of a Keele astrophysicist, it is used for public outreach as well as research. About 4,000 people visit the observatory every year, including a large number of children. We present the facility, its history - including involvement in the 1919 Eddington solar eclipse expedition which proved Albert Einstein's theory of general relativity - and its ambitions to erect a radio telescope on its site.

  6. Armenian Astronomical Archives and Databases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, A. M.; Astsatryan, H. V.; Knyazyan, A. V.; Mikayelyan, G. A.

    2017-01-01

    The major characteristics of modern astronomy are multiwavelength studies (from γ-ray to radio) and big data (data acquisition, storage and analysis). Present astronomical databases and archives contain billions of objects observed in various wavelengths, both galactic and extragalactic, and the vast amount of data on them allows new studies and discoveries. Astronomical Data are one of the largest collections of World Data System. The Armenian astronomical databases maintain large amount of data accumulated during dozens of years of observations with a number of telescopes in the Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory (BAO). Among them most important are two Schmidt type telescopes, 0.5m and 1m (one of the biggest in the world), and the 2.6m classical reflector. Some of these data are unique, such as the First Byurakan Survey (FBS or better known as Mark Arian Survey) objective prism photographic plates and its digitized version, the Digitized First Byurakan Survey (DFBS). It consists of 1874 photographic plates containing some 40,000,000 low-dispersion spectra for some 20,000,000 objects covering 17,000 square degrees at declinations δ>-15 ° and galactic latitudes |b|>15°. DFBS provides images and extracted spectra for all objects present in the FBS plates. Programs were developed to compute astrometric solution, extract spectra, and apply wavelength and photometric calibration for objects. A DFBS database and catalog has been assembled. A classification scheme for the DFBS spectra is being developed. A few other digitization projects have been accomplished or are ongoing: Second Byurakan Survey (SBS) spectroscopic plates, FBS Blue Stellar Objects and Late Type Stars photographic spectra taken with the 2.6m telescope, the variability of the Blazar ON 231 obtained from numerous photometric observations, etc. At present BAO Plate Archive Project is active and is aimed at digitization of some 37,000 photographic plates, construction of a full plate database and

  7. Enthusiastic Little Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Novak, Ines

    2016-04-01

    Younger primary school students often show great interest in the vast Universe hiding behind the starry night's sky, but don't have a way of learning about it and exploring it in regular classes. Some of them would search children's books, Internet or encyclopedias for information or facts they are interested in, but there are those whose hunger for knowledge would go unfulfilled. Such students were the real initiators of our extracurricular activity called Little Astronomers. With great enthusiasm they would name everything that interests them about the Universe that we live in and I would provide the information in a fun and interactive yet acceptable way for their level of understanding. In our class we learn about Earth and its place in the Solar System, we learn about the planets and other objects of our Solar System and about the Sun itself. We also explore the night sky using programs such as Stellarium, learning to recognize constellations and name them. Most of our activities are done using a PowerPoint presentation, YouTube videos, and Internet simulations followed by some practical work the students do themselves. Because of the lack of available materials and funds, most of materials are hand made by the teacher leading the class. We also use the school's galileoscope as often as possible. Every year the students are given the opportunity to go to an observatory in a town 90 km away so that they could gaze at the sky through the real telescope for the first time. Our goal is to start stepping into the world of astronomy by exploring the secrets of the Universe and understanding the process of rotation and revolution of our planet and its effects on our everyday lives and also to become more aware of our own role in our part of the Universe. The hunger for knowledge and enthusiasm these students have is contagious. They are becoming more aware of their surroundings and also understanding their place in the Universe that helps them remain humble and helps

  8. The Malaysian Robotic Solar Observatory (P29)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Othman, M.; Asillam, M. F.; Ismail, M. K. H.

    2006-11-01

    Robotic observatory with small telescopes can make significant contributions to astronomy observation. They provide an encouraging environment for astronomers to focus on data analysis and research while at the same time reducing time and cost for observation. The observatory will house the primary 50cm robotic telescope in the main dome which will be used for photometry, spectroscopy and astrometry observation activities. The secondary telescope is a robotic multi-apochromatic refractor (maximum diameter: 15 cm) which will be housed in the smaller dome. This telescope set will be used for solar observation mainly in three different wavelengths simultaneously: the Continuum, H-Alpha and Calcium K-line. The observatory is also equipped with an automated weather station, cloud & rain sensor and all-sky camera to monitor the climatic condition, sense the clouds (before raining) as well as to view real time sky view above the observatory. In conjunction with the Langkawi All-Sky Camera, the observatory website will also display images from the Malaysia - Antarctica All-Sky Camera used to monitor the sky at Scott Base Antarctica. Both all-sky images can be displayed simultaneously to show the difference between the equatorial and Antarctica skies. This paper will describe the Malaysian Robotic Observatory including the systems available and method of access by other astronomers. We will also suggest possible collaboration with other observatories in this region.

  9. Future Large-Aperture Ultraviolet/Optical/Infrared Space Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thronson, Harley; Mandell, Avi; Polidan, Ron; Tumlinson, Jason

    2016-01-01

    Since the beginning of modern astronomical science in the early 1900s, astronomers have yearned to escape the turbulence and absorption of Earth's atmosphere by placing observatories in space. One of the first papers to lay out the advantages of space astronomy was by Lyman Spitzer in 1946, "Astronomical Advantages of an Extra-Terrestrial Observatory," though later in life he minimized the influence of this work. Since that time, and especially gaining momentum in the 1960s after the launch of Sputnik, astronomers, technologists, and engineers continued to advance, organizing scientific conferences, advocating for necessary technologies, and assessing sophisticated designs for increasingly ambitious space observations at ultraviolet, visual, and infrared (UVOIR) wavelengths. These community-wide endeavors, combined with the explosion in technological capability enabled by the Apollo era, led to rapid advancement in space observatory performance that culminated in the spectacularly successful Hubble Space Telescope (HST), launched in 1990 and still returning surpassing scientific results.

  10. Astronomical journey to the Skåne district in Sweden

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakamura, Tsuko

    2006-09-01

    In September of 2005, we had a chance to travel to the Skåe district of Sweden. This short paper briefly reports what we saw there, along with historical episodes relating to Lund Observatory, the medieval astronomical clock preserved at the Lund Cathedral, and the Hven island where Tycho Brahe constructed in the late 16th century the first modern astronomical observatory called Uraniborg.

  11. Light Phenomena over the ESO Observatories II: Red Sprites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horálek, P.; Christensen, L. L.; Bór, J.; Setvák, M.

    2016-03-01

    A rare atmospheric phenomenon, known as red sprites, was observed and captured on camera from the La Silla Observatory. This event signalled the first time that these extremely short-lived flashes of red light, originating in the Earth’s upper atmosphere, were photographed from a major astronomical observatory. Further images of red sprites from the La Silla Paranal Observatory sites are presented and the nature of red sprites is discussed.

  12. The Pulkovo Observatory on the Centuries' Borderline

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abalakin, Viktor K.

    The present paper deals with the development of astrophysical research at the Pulkovo Observatory (now: the Central (Pulkovo) Astronomical Observatory of the Russian Academy of Sciences) at adjacent time periods separated by the threshold between the 19th and the 20th centuries. The Pulkovo Observatory had been inaugurated in 1839. Its traditional field of research work was astrometry. The confirmation of light absorption phenomenon in interstellar space by Friedrich Georg Wilhelm Struve marked the turn of the Observatory's research programs toward astrophysics. New tendencies in the development of contemporaneous astronomy in Russia were pointed out by Otto Struve in his paper “About the Place of Astrophysics in Astronomy” presented in 1866 to the Saint-Petersburg Academy of Sciences. Wide-scale astrophysical studies were performed at Pulkovo Observatory around 1900 during the directorships of Theodore Bredikhin, Oscar Backlund and Aristarchos Belopolsky.

  13. Status of the Frisco Peak Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ricketts, Paul; Springer, Wayne; Dawson, Kyle; Kieda, Dave; Gondolo, Paolo; Bolton, Adam

    2009-10-01

    The University of Utah has constructed an astronomical observatory located at an elevation of approximately 9600 feet of Frisco Peak west of Milford, Utah. This site was chosen after performing a survey of potential observatory sites throughout Southern Utah. At the time of writing this abstract, the dome and control buildings have been completed. Installation of a 32'' telescope manufactured by DFM Engineering is scheduled to start October 5, 2009. Commissioning of the telescope will take place this fall. A study of the photometric quality of the observatory site will be performed as well. A description of the observatory site survey and the construction and commissioning of the Frisco Peak Observatory will be presented.

  14. International Astronomical-Cultural Initiatives and Ukrainian Astronomical Heritage in the Context of World Heritage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kazantseva, L.

    2011-09-01

    Astronomy as science of world view has left its mark in many areas of human culture. Astronomical movable and immovable monuments as cultural and scientific content recently started to be studied carefully, and finally receive their recognition for their further preservation. Various international organizations have initiated a diverse case studies of these monuments, produced some recommendations for their organization, typology, division into periods. In joint programs, experts of IAU, UNESCO, ICOMOS elaborate criteria for selection of monuments of global significance. Complete study of astronomical sights will allow to consider the history of scientific knowledge dissemination in time and in space. Ukraine has also carefully examined their stored astronomical monuments scattered in astronomical observatories, libraries, archives, museums, university collections, architectural ensembles, archaeological parks and cemeteries. In conditions of instability and crises it is important to establish uniqueness or typicality of certain historical sites, to study their characteristics and identity, relationship with global trends that will enable their successful promotion and protection. Part of these research works are conducted in our observatories, but not as intensively as in other countries. They have not engaged in related industries and professionals authorized state institutions. Not having used an active effort in this case, we can stay behind the big international project for study the intellectual and cultural heritage.

  15. The creation of the International Astronomical Union as a result of scientific diplomacy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saint-Martin, Arnaud

    2011-06-01

    After World War I, the foundation of the International Astronomical Union delimited a space for a new form of internationality, which led to a rapid change in the way astronomical research had previously been pursued. This structure was to be a sort of parliament of astronomical nations which planned to supervise scientific programs and to rationalise inter-observatory cooperation. In this article, I will discuss the sociological aspects of this institutional process and introduce the idea of `scientific diplomacy'.

  16. Achievements of the Armenian Astronomy and the Present Activities of the Armenian Astronomical Society

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, A. M.

    2014-10-01

    A report is given on the achievements of the Armenian astronomy during the last years and on the present activities of the Armenian Astronomical Society (ArAS). ArAS membership, ArAS electronic newsletters (ArASNews), ArAS webpage, international collaboration, Armenian Virtual Observatory (ArVO), membership in international organizations, grants, prizes, meetings, summer schools, astronomical Olympiads, other matters related to astronomical education, archaeoastronomy, astronomy outreach and ArAS further projects are discussed.

  17. Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, A. M.

    2016-09-01

    This booklet is devoted to NAS RA V. Ambartsumian Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory and is aimed at people interested in astronomy and BAO, pupils and students, BAO visitors and others. The booklet is made as a visiting card and presents concise and full information about BAO. A brief history of BAO, the biography of the great scientist Viktor Ambartsumian, brief biographies of 13 other deserved scientists formerly working at BAO (B.E. Markarian, G.A. Gurzadyan, L.V. Mirzoyan, M.A. Arakelian, et al.), information on BAO telescopes (2.6m, 1m Schmidt, etc.) and other scientific instruments, scientific library and photographic plate archive, Byurakan surveys (including the famous Markarian Survey included in the UNESCO Memory of the World International Register), all scientific meetings held in Byurakan, international scientific collaboration, data on full research staff of the Observatory, as well as former BAO researchers, who have moved to foreign institutions are given in the booklet. At the end, the list of the most important books published by Armenian astronomers and about them is given.

  18. The Astronomical Journal in the Early 20th Century

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gino, M. C.; Wise, G.

    2004-05-01

    The Astronomical Journal (AJ), one of the longest running scientific journals in the United States, was edited in Albany, New York between 1909 and 1941. That Albany sojourn, occurring just as astronomy was maturing into a scientific profession, provides insight into the evolution of scientific journals and the science behind them. Those journals grew from the personal property of one or a few individuals into the voice of a professional community. Upon taking over the AJ in 1909, its new editor, Dudley Observatory director Lewis Boss, polled that U.S. astronomical community on the advisability of continuing the journal, which had been founded in 1849 by Benjamin Apthorp Gould. The answer he received provides insight into how portions of the astronomical community defined their field, and the policies he subsequently followed illuminate the realities of the role of journal publication in early 20th century astronomy. The correspondence between Boss and members of the astronomical community upon which this research is primarily based is from the Records of the Astronomical Journal spanning the years of 1897 - 1941. These records, which include correspondence, mailing lists, journals, memorandums, proofs, financial records, manuscripts and ledgers, are part of the Dudley Observatory Institutional Archives that have been maintained as the historical collection of the Observatory.

  19. Crab Nebula from Five Observatories

    NASA Image and Video Library

    2017-05-10

    In the summer of the year 1054 AD, Chinese astronomers saw a new "guest star," that appeared six times brighter than Venus. So bright in fact, it could be seen during the daytime for several months. This "guest star" was forgotten about until 700 years later with the advent of telescopes. Astronomers saw a tentacle-like nebula in the place of the vanished star and called it the Crab Nebula. Today we know it as the expanding gaseous remnant from a star that self-detonated as a supernova, briefly shining as brightly as 400 million suns. The explosion took place 6,500 light-years away. If the blast had instead happened 50 light-years away it would have irradiated Earth, wiping out most life forms. In the late 1960s astronomers discovered the crushed heart of the doomed star, an ultra-dense neutron star that is a dynamo of intense magnetic field and radiation energizing the nebula. Astronomers therefore need to study the Crab Nebula across a broad range of electromagnetic radiation, from X-rays to radio waves. This image combines data from five different telescopes: the VLA (radio) in red; Spitzer Space Telescope (infrared) in yellow; Hubble Space Telescope (visible) in green; XMM-Newton (ultraviolet) in blue; and Chandra X-ray Observatory (X-ray) in purple. More images and an animation are available at https://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA21474

  20. Digitization and Position Measurement of Astronomical Plates of Saturnian Satellites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yan, D.; Yu, Y.; Zhang, H. Y.; Qiao, R. C.

    2014-05-01

    Using the advanced commercial scanners to digitize astronomical plates may be a simple and effective way. In this paper, we discuss the method of digitizing and astrometrically reducing six astronomical plates of Saturnian satellites, which were taken from the 1 m RCC (Ritchey Chretien Coude) telescope of Yunnan Observatory in 1988, by using the 10000XL scanner of Epson. The digitized images of the astronomical plates of Saturnian satellites are re-reduced, and the positions of Saturnian satellites based on the UCAC2 (The Second US Naval Observatory CCD Astrograph Catalog) catalogue are given. A comparison of our measured positions with the IMCCE (Institut de Mecanique Celeste et de Calcul des Ephemerides) ephemeris of Saturnian satellites shows the high quality of our measurements, which have an accuracy of 106 mas in right ascension and 89 mas in declination. Moreover, our measurements appear to be consistent with this ephemeris within only about 56 mas in right ascension and 9 mas in declination.

  1. Astronomical photography, part T

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dunkelman, L.; Mercer, R. D.; Ross, C. L.; Worden, A. M.

    1972-01-01

    Photographic observations of astronomical interest conducted during the Apollo 15 mission are discussed. Procedures used in photographing the solar corona are described together with calibration and reduction methods. In addition, selected preliminary results obtained from the photography are presented.

  2. An astronomical murder?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Belenkiy, Ari

    2010-04-01

    Ari Belenkiy examines the murder of Hypatia of Alexandria, wondering whether problems with astronomical observations and the date of Easter led to her becoming a casualty of fifth-century political intrigue.

  3. Decoding Astronomical Concepts

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Durisen, Richard H.; Pilachowski, Catherine A.

    2004-01-01

    Two astronomy professors, using the Decoding the Disciplines process, help their students use abstract theories to analyze light and to visualize the enormous scale of astronomical concepts. (Contains 5 figures.)

  4. The Cincinnati Observatory as a Research Instrument for Undergraduate Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abel, Nicholas; Regas, Dean; Flateau, Davin C.; Larrabee, Cliff

    2016-06-01

    The Cincinnati Observatory, founded in 1842, was the first public observatory in the Western Hemisphere. The history of Cincinnati is closely intertwined with the history of the Observatory, and with the history of science in the United States. Previous directors of the Observatory helped to create the National Weather Service, the Minor Planet Center, and the first astronomical journal in the U.S. The Cincinnati Observatory was internationally known in the late 19th century, with Jules Verne mentioning the Cincinnati Observatory in two of his books, and the Observatory now stands as a National Historic Landmark.No longer a research instrument, the Observatory is now a tool for promoting astronomy education to the general public. However, with the 11" and 16" refracting telescopes, the Observatory telescopes are very capable of collecting data to fuel undergraduate research projects. In this poster, we will discuss the history of the Observatory, types of student research projects capable with the Cincinnati Observatory, future plans, and preliminary results. The overall goal of this project is to produce a steady supply of undergraduate students collecting, analyzing, and interpreting data, and thereby introduce them to the techniques and methodology of an astronomer at an early stage of their academic career.

  5. Thinking Like an Astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gorman, Michael E.

    2006-12-01

    Astronomers have to gain three types of knowledge: information, skills and wisdom. Amateurs can gain aspects of this knowledge as well, but they are not subjected to the kind of peer review experienced by professionals. Astronomers increasingly collaborate with other disciplines on the development of new instruments, which calls for interactional expertise. Examples are drawn from the history of astronomy, from the own experience as an amateur, and from recent developments like the Hub-ble Space Telescope.

  6. Lunar orbital photography of astronomical phenomena.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mercer, R. D.; Dunkelman, L.; Ross, C. L.; Worden, A.

    1972-01-01

    This paper reports further progress on photography of faint astronomical and geophysical phenomena accomplished during the recent Apollo missions. Command module pilots have been able to photograph such astronomical objects as the solar corona, zodiacal light-corona transition region, lunar libration region, and portions of the Milky Way. The methods utilized for calibration of the film by adaptation of the High Altitude Observatory sensitometer are discussed. Kodak 2485 high-speed recording film was used in both 35-mm and 70-mm formats. The cameras used were Nikon f/1.2 55-mm focal length and Hasselblad f/2.8 80-mm focal length. Preflight and postflight calibration exposures were included on both the flight and control films, corresponding to luminances extending from the inner solar corona to as faint as 1/10 of the luminance of the light of the night sky. The photographs obtained from unique vantage points available during lunar orbit are discussed.

  7. David Gill: clock maker to global astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haley, P. A.

    2014-04-01

    Reduction in the uncertainty of physical measurements underpinned many advances in solar and stellar parallax, the determination of longitude, geodesy, and the accurate mapping of the heavens using celestial photography in the late nineteenth century. A pioneer in these areas, who successfully made the transition from clock maker in Aberdeen to H.M. Astronomer at the Cape of Good Hope was David Gill (1843-1914); Sir David Gill, K.C.B. from 1900. This paper celebrates the first third of Gill's career in astronomy and geodesy up to the time he was made redundant from Dun Echt Observatory at the end of 1875. It highlights how his horological skills were applied to telescope design and also how his aspirations to become a global astronomer started. The paper is timed to coincide with Gill's centenary anniversary year - he died 24 January 1914.

  8. A website for astronomical news in Spanish

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ortiz-Gil, A.

    2008-06-01

    Noticias del Cosmos is a collection of web pages within the Astronomical Observatory of the University of Valencia's website where we publish short daily summaries of astronomical press releases. Most, if not all of, the releases are originally written in English, and often Spanish readers may find them difficult to understand because not many people are familiar with the scientific language employed in these releases. Noticias del Cosmos has two principal aims. First, we want to communicate the latest astronomical news on a daily basis to a wide Spanish-speaking public who would otherwise not be able to read them because of the language barrier. Second, daily news can be used as a tool to introduce the astronomical topics of the school curriculum in a more immediate and relevant way. Most of the students at school have not yet reached a good enough level in their knowledge of English to fully understand a press release, and Noticias del Cosmos offers them and their teachers this news in their mother tongue. During the regular programme of school visits at the Observatory we use the news as a means of showing that there is still a lot to be discovered. So far the visits to the website have been growing steadily. Between June 2003 and June 2007 we had more than 30,000 visits (excluding 2006). More than 50% of the visits come from Spain, followed by visitors from South and Central America. The feedback we have received from teachers so far has been very positive, showing the usefulness of news items in the classroom when teaching astronomy.

  9. Etienne Leopold Trouvelot (1827--1895), the Artist and Astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Corbin, B. G.

    2007-10-01

    The French-born artist Trouvelot arrived in the United States in 1855. His interest in astronomy began with his observations and sketches of spectacular auroras in the 1870s. This work drew the interest of Harvard College Observatory astronomers and he was invited to join the staff. Using Harvard's 15-inch refractor and other telescopes, Trouvelot made many drawings of celestial objects. He was invited to Washington in 1875 to use the Naval Observatory's 26-inch Equatorial, at that time the world's largest refractor. In 1881 Charles Scribner's & Sons agreed to publish a portfolio with 15 of his best drawings as chromolithographs. He returned to France in 1882 to work with Jules Janssen at the Meudon Observatory. Unfortunately, in the United States, Trouvelot will always be remembered not for his astronomical art but as the person who introduced the gypsy moth into the country.

  10. Brazil to Join the European Southern Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2010-12-01

    The Federative Republic of Brazil has yesterday signed the formal accession agreement paving the way for it to become a Member State of the European Southern Observatory (ESO). Following government ratification Brazil will become the fifteenth Member State and the first from outside Europe. On 29 December 2010, at a ceremony in Brasilia, the Brazilian Minister of Science and Technology, Sergio Machado Rezende and the ESO Director General, Tim de Zeeuw signed the formal accession agreement aiming to make Brazil a Member State of the European Southern Observatory. Brazil will become the fifteen Member State and the first from outside Europe. Since the agreement means accession to an international convention, the agreement must now be submitted to the Brazilian Parliament for ratification [1]. The signing of the agreement followed the unanimous approval by the ESO Council during an extraordinary meeting on 21 December 2010. "Joining ESO will give new impetus to the development of science, technology and innovation in Brazil as part of the considerable efforts our government is making to keep the country advancing in these strategic areas," says Rezende. The European Southern Observatory has a long history of successful involvement with South America, ever since Chile was selected as the best site for its observatories in 1963. Until now, however, no non-European country has joined ESO as a Member State. "The membership of Brazil will give the vibrant Brazilian astronomical community full access to the most productive observatory in the world and open up opportunities for Brazilian high-tech industry to contribute to the European Extremely Large Telescope project. It will also bring new resources and skills to the organisation at the right time for them to make a major contribution to this exciting project," adds ESO Director General, Tim de Zeeuw. The European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT) telescope design phase was recently completed and a major review was

  11. Light pollution around Tonantzintla Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vázquez-Mata, José A.; Hernández-Toledo, Héctor M.; Martínez-Vázquez, Luis A.; Pani-Cielo, Atanacio

    2011-06-01

    Being close to the cities of Puebla to east and Cholula to the north, both having potential for large growth, the National Astronomical Observatory in Tonantzintla (OAN-Tonantzintla) faces the danger of deteriorating its sky conditions even more. In order to maintain competitiveness for education and scientific programs, it is important to preserve the sky brightness conditions. through: 1) our awareness of the night sky characteristics in continuous monitoring campaigns, doing more measurements over the next years to monitor changes and 2) encouraging local authorities about the need to regulate public lighting at the same time, showing them the benefits of such initiatives when well planed and correctly implemented.

  12. Far-infrared spectrophotometer for astronomical observations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moseley, H.; Silverberg, R. F.

    1981-01-01

    A liquid-helium-cooled far infrared spectrophotometer was built and used to make low resolution observations of the continua of several kinds of astronomical objects using the Kuiper Airborne Observatory. This instrument fills a gap in both sensitivity to continuum sources and spectral resolution between the broadband photometers with lambda/Delta lambda approximately 1 and spectrometers with lambda/Delta lambda greater than 50. While designed primarily to study planetary nebulae, the instrument permits study of the shape of the continua of many weak sources which cannot easily be observed with high resolution systems.

  13. Astropix: An Archive of Astronomical Images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Squires, Gordon K.; Hurt, R.; Rosenthal, C.; Llamas, J.; Brinkworth, C.; Pyle, T.

    2011-01-01

    In fall 2010, a new, central repository of astronomical images became available at http://astropix.ipac.caltech.edu . Enabled by the Astronomy Visualization Metadata (AVM) standard, this archive contains images from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, Chandra, Hubble, WISE, GALEX, and the Herschel Space Observatory. For the first time, an automated registry is possible by populating contextual and informational fields in the metadata of the images themselves. This presentation will highlight the features of the archive, how to include your images in the registry and applications enabled including dynamic websites, kiosks, and mobile device applications.

  14. ANSEF Support to Astronomical Research in Armenia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Terzian, Yervant

    2007-08-01

    To promote scientific and scholarly research in Armenia, in 1999 the Armenian National Science and Education Fund (ANSEF) was formed in New York, USA. Since 2000, ANSEF has issued an annual request for proposals from scientists and scholars working in Armenia. In the last seven years we have received 200 to 300 proposals each year. These proposals are peer reviewed and grants issued to the top 10% to 15% annually. Proposals in the astronomical sciences have primarily been submitted from scientists from the Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory, and the Yerevan State University, and they have been very successful. These competitive awards have produced significant new research published in many international journals.

  15. Astronomy and astronomical education in the FSU (Former Soviet Union)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bochkarev, Nikolai G.

    The current situation in astronomy and astronomical education over the territory of the Former Soviet Union is traced. New facilities for radioastronomy are being put into work - the most important of them being the 2 coupled 32-m dishes, VLBI network "Quasar"; a number of observatories are acquiring an international status (in the frame of CIS); INTERNET is becoming available for an increasing number of astronomical institutions. Azerbaijan astronomers have overcome their isolation from the rest of the world and cooperate actively with the astronomical community. All-Russia and international olympics in astronomy for high school students are held and attract participants from increasing number of regions of Russia and other states. The outcome of the 9th JENAM in Moscow and of the events attached to the Meeting is presented.

  16. New Geophysical Observatory in Uruguay

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sanchez Bettucci, L.; Nuñez, P.; Caraballo, R. R.; Ogando, R.

    2013-05-01

    In 2011 began the installation of the first geophysical observatory in Uruguay, with the aim of developing the Geosciences. The Astronomical and Geophysical Observatory Aiguá (OAGA) is located within the Cerro Catedral Tourist Farm (-34 ° 20 '0 .89 "S/-54 ° 42 '44.72" W, h: 270m). This has the distinction of being located in the center of the South Atlantic Magnetic Anomaly. Geologically is emplaced in a Neoproterozoic basement, in a region with scarce anthropogenic interference. The OAGA has, since 2012, with a GSM-90FD dIdD v7.0 and GSM-90F Overhauser, both of GEM Systems. In addition has a super-SID receiver provided by the Stanford University SOLAR Center, as a complement for educational purposes. Likewise the installation of a seismograph REF TEK-151-120A and VLF antenna is being done since the beginning of 2013.

  17. Introduction to the Infrared Space Observatory (ISO)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kessler, M. F.; Sibille, F.

    1989-01-01

    The Infrared Space Observatory (ISO) is an astronomical satellite, which will operate at infrared wavelengths (2.5 to 200 microns) for a period of at least 18 months. Imaging, spectroscopic, photometric and polarimetric observations will be obtained by four scientific instruments in the focal plane of its 60-cm diameter, cryogenically-cooled telescope. Two-thirds of ISO's observing time will be available to the astronomical community. ISO is a fully approved and funded project of the European Space Agency (ESA) with a foreseen launch date of May 1993.

  18. Conceiving and marketing NASA's Great Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harwit, Martin

    2009-08-01

    In early 1984, the astronomical community’s plans to launch a series of powerful telescopes able to study celestial sources at almost any wavelength were in trouble. The President of the United States had just declared his priority for a Space Station that was bound to be expensive, and Congress could not understand why yet another set of space observatories was needed when others were already being funded. To realize their aims, astronomers would have to advocate their needs much more effectively than in the past.

  19. The Chandra X-Ray Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Weisskopf, M. C.

    2001-01-01

    The Chandra X-Ray Observatory is the X-ray component of NASA's Great observatories which also includes the recently decommissioned Compton Gamma Ray Observatory, the Hubble Space Telescope, and the soon to be launched Space Infra Red Telescope Facility. Chandra is a unique X-ray astronomy facility for high-resolution imaging and for high-resolution spectroscopy. Chandra's performance advantage over other X-ray observatories is analogous to that of the Hubble Space Telescope over ground-based observatories. Chandra is a NASA facility that provides scientific data to the international astronomical community in response to proposals for its use. Data becomes public one year after the observation. The Observatory is the product of the efforts of many commercial, academic, and government organizations in the United States and Europe. NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) manages the Project and provides Project Science; TRW Space and Electronics Group served as prime contractor responsible for providing the spacecraft, the telescope, and assembling and testing the observatory; the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) provides technical support and is responsible for ground operations.

  20. A Survey of Astronomical Research: A Baseline for Astronomical Development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ribeiro, V. A. R. M.; Russo, P.; Cárdenas-Avendaño, A.

    2013-12-01

    Measuring scientific development is a difficult task. Different metrics have been put forward to evaluate scientific development; in this paper we explore a metric that uses the number of peer-reviewed, and when available non-peer-reviewed, research articles as an indicator of development in the field of astronomy. We analyzed the available publication record, using the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory/NASA Astrophysics Database System, by country affiliation in the time span between 1950 and 2011 for countries with a gross national income of less than 14,365 USD in 2010. This represents 149 countries. We propose that this metric identifies countries in "astronomical development" with a culture of research publishing. We also propose that for a country to develop in astronomy, it should invest in outside expert visits, send its staff abroad to study, and establish a culture of scientific publishing. Furthermore, we propose that this paper may be used as a baseline to measure the success of major international projects, such as the International Year of Astronomy 2009.

  1. A SURVEY OF ASTRONOMICAL RESEARCH: A BASELINE FOR ASTRONOMICAL DEVELOPMENT

    SciTech Connect

    Ribeiro, V. A. R. M.; Russo, P.; Cárdenas-Avendaño, A. E-mail: russo@strw.leidenuniv.nl

    2013-12-01

    Measuring scientific development is a difficult task. Different metrics have been put forward to evaluate scientific development; in this paper we explore a metric that uses the number of peer-reviewed, and when available non-peer-reviewed, research articles as an indicator of development in the field of astronomy. We analyzed the available publication record, using the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory/NASA Astrophysics Database System, by country affiliation in the time span between 1950 and 2011 for countries with a gross national income of less than 14,365 USD in 2010. This represents 149 countries. We propose that this metric identifies countries in ''astronomical development'' with a culture of research publishing. We also propose that for a country to develop in astronomy, it should invest in outside expert visits, send its staff abroad to study, and establish a culture of scientific publishing. Furthermore, we propose that this paper may be used as a baseline to measure the success of major international projects, such as the International Year of Astronomy 2009.

  2. Serbian Astronomers in Science Citation Index in the XX Century

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dimitrijevic, Milan S.

    The book is written paralelly in Serbian and English. The presence of works of Serbian astronomers and works in astronomical journals published by other Serbian scientists, in Science Citation Index within the period from 1945 up to the end of 2000, has been analyzed. Also is presented the list of 38 papers which had some influence on the development of astronomy in the twentieth century. A review of the development of astronomy in Serbia in the last century is given as well. Particular attention is payed to the Astronomical Observatory, the principal astronomical institution in Serbia, where it is one of the oldest scientific organizations and the only autonomous astronomical institute. Its past development forms an important part of the history of science and culture in these regions. In the book is also considered and the history of the university teaching of astronomy in Serbia after the second world war. First of all the development of the Chair of Astronomy at the Faculty of Mathematics in Belgrade, but also the teaching of astronomy at University in Novi Sad, Ni and Kragujevac is discussed. In addition to professional Astronomy, well developed in Serbia is also the amateur Astronomy. In the review is first of all included the largest and the oldest organization of amateur-astronomers in Serbia, founded in 1934. Besides, here are the Astronomical Society "Novi Sad", ADNOS and Research Station "Petnica". In Valjevo, within the framework of the Society of researchers "Vladimir Mandic - Manda", there is active also the Astronomical Group. In Kragujevac, on the roof of the Institute of Physics of the Faculty of Sciences, there is the "Belerofont" Observatory. In Ni, at the close of the sixties and the start of the seventies, there was operating a branch of the Astronomical Society "Rudjer Bokovic", while at the Faculty of Philosophy there existed in the period 1976-1980 the "Astro-Geophysical Society". In the year 1996 there was founded Astronomical Society

  3. Magdalena Ridge Observatory: the start-up of a new observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bakker, Eric J.; Westpfahl, David; Loos, Gary

    2008-07-01

    This paper discusses the challenges faced in designing and building a new astronomical observatory. Which factors drive an organization (e.g. university) to invest considerable funding and human resources, and experience considerable risk to establish a new research facility? We identify four main drivers for establishing a new observatory: support for education, research, economic development, and technology development. For public observatories, research is generally the main driver. For nonpublic observatories, the situation is more complex and is for each situation different. A detailed description is presented on the drivers and opportunities that resulted in establishing the Magdalena Ridge Observatory. Three main opportunities are identified: a developed site, surplus equipment, and economic development of the Socorro area.

  4. Theory of astronomical masers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kylafis, Nikolaos D.

    The theory of astronomical masers is reviewed. As with laboratory masers, masing occurs when a transition between two energy levels of a molecule exhibits inverted populations. In order to present the basic concepts about masers, an idealized two-level system is used. The exact energy level structure is taken into account later on when the pumping of specific molecules is discussed. Unlike laboratory masers, where the radiation must be bounced between two mirrors to accumulate gain, the propagation of radiation in astronomical masers is a lot simpler. This is because astronomical masers are single-pass and broadband. Thus, the main theoretical effort has concentrated on inventing efficient mechanisms that produce population inversion. Specific pumping mechanisms for the three molecules (H2O, SiO and OH) that exhibit strong masing are presented and their ability to explain the observations is discussed.

  5. Virtual Observatories: Are We Virtually There Yet?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gurman, J. B.

    2004-01-01

    Virtual observatories are tools for simplifying access to and use of astronomical data from an increasing number of data sources of rapidly growing volume. Now that a variety of virtual observatory development efforts are under way around the world, a cursory review of the efforts outside solar physics, and an only slightly more detailed consideration of those within, demonstrates a commonality of conceptual model if not of approach or application. The linkages among virtual observatories optimized for different scientific communities present an interesting challenge to the designers: should virtual observatories be designed for the most expert users? For the least? For everyone? It is too early to provide definitive answers, but examination of current efforts does offer some clues.

  6. Virtual Observatories: Are We Virtually There Yet?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gurman, J. B.

    2004-01-01

    Virtual observatories are tools for simplifying access to and use of astronomical data from an increasing number of data sources of rapidly growing volume. Now that a variety of virtual observatory development efforts are under way around the world, a cursory review of the efforts outside solar physics, and an only slightly more detailed consideration of those within, demonstrates a commonality of conceptual model if not of approach or application. The linkages among virtual observatories optimized for different scientific communities present an interesting challenge to the designers: should virtual observatories be designed for the most expert users? For the least? For everyone? It is too early to provide definitive answers, but examination of current efforts does offer some clues.

  7. An Astronomical Life Salted by Pure Chance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kraft, Robert P.

    2009-09-01

    My childhood upbringing in no way suggested that I would become an astronomer, but accidents of fate pushed me in the direction of science, and I have benefited greatly from being in the right place at the right time. I grew up in Seattle, earned B.S. and M.S. degrees in mathematics at the University of Washington, and eventually a Ph.D. in astronomy from the University of California, Berkeley. I was a postdoc at the Mt. Wilson Observatory, an assistant professor at Indiana University, later the Yerkes Observatory (University of Chicago), and still later I became a staff member of the Mt. Wilson and Palomar Observatories. After several years, I returned to the University of California, this time with the Lick Observatory staff at its new academic home on the Santa Cruz campus, where I have been ever since. My research has focused on the relation of Cepheids and RR Lyrae stars to problems of Galactic structure, the binary nature of cataclysmic variables, the decay of angular momentum of solar type stars, and the chemical history of the Galaxy as revealed by the abundances of very old stars in globular clusters and the Galactic halo field. None of this work would have been possible without the help of excellent teachers and mentors, great colleagues, and superb postdocs and graduate students. Most of all, I am grateful for the educational opportunities afforded me by state-supported public Universities.

  8. Flamsteed's stars. New perspectives on the life and work of the first Astronomer Royal (1646 - 1719).

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Willmoth, F.

    Contents: 1. Introduction: the King's "astronomical observer". 2. Flamsteed's career in astronomy: nobility, morality and public utility (J. Bennett). 3. Astronomy and strife: John Flamsteed and the Royal Society (M. Feingold). 4. Models for the practice of astronomy: Flamsteed, Horrocks and Tycho (F. Willmoth). 5. Flamsteed's optics and the identity of the astronomical observer (A. Johns). 6. Equipping an observatory: Flamsteed and Molyneux discuss an astronomical quadrant (H. Higton). 7. Mathematical characters: Flamsteed and Christ's Hospital Royal Mathematical School (R. Iliffe). 8. "Professor" John Flamsteed (I. G. Stewart). 9. Edmond Halley and John Flamsteed at the Royal Observatory (A. Cook). 10. A unique copy of Flamsteed's Historia coelestis (1712) (O. Gingerich). 11. "Labour harder than thrashing": John Flamsteed, property and intellectual labour in nineteenth-century England (W. J. Ashworth). 12. The Flamsteed papers in the archives of the Royal Greenwich Observatory. (A. Perkins). A summary catalogue of Flamsteed's papers in the Royal Greenwich Observatory archives (compiled by F. Willmoth).

  9. Using Robotic Operating System (ROS) to control autonomous observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vilardell, Francesc; Artigues, Gabriel; Sanz, Josep; García-Piquer, Álvaro; Colomé, Josep; Ribas, Ignasi

    2016-07-01

    Astronomical observatories are complex systems requiring the integration of numerous devices into a common platform. We are presenting here the firsts steps to integrate the popular Robotic Operating System (ROS) into the control of a fully autonomous observatory. The observatory is also equipped with a decision-making procedure that can automatically react to a changing environment (like weather events). The results obtained so far have shown that the automation of a small observatory can be greatly simplified when using ROS, as well as robust, with the implementation of our decision-making algorithms.

  10. Education of American research astronomers, 1876-1941

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hall, Robert Dale

    1999-01-01

    The education (particularly graduate education) of Americans who were active in astronomical research between 1876 and 1941 is assessed for its effectiveness in preparing the astronomers for careers in research. This period contains three dynamic changes: the growth of American astronomy in becoming the world's leading community of astronomers, the formation and flourishing of the American model of the graduate school, and the switch of emphasis of research from classical astronomy to astrophysics. Investigations are made of the roles of the astronomers' education in the growth and success of American astronomy and the progressive adoption of new fields of research-observational astrophysics, statistical astronomy, and theoretical astrophysics. Influences on astronomical education in the US are also assessed. The study used biographical information on the education and research careers of 509 scientists who published at least three papers of astronomical research. The data allowed the study of trends in the education of the astronomers. Brief case histories of astronomical education at the most important schools of astronomy, Berkeley-Lick, Chicago-Yerkes, Harvard, Michigan, and Princeton, complemented data of the astronomers. The study found that the loss of courses of elementary astronomy in high schools and colleges due to a report in 1893 had no discernible effect on the growth of the community of astrophysicists, yet contributed to the decline of classical astronomy. Also, the astronomers most responsible for the rise of astrophysics after 1900 were not educated in conventional graduate programs of classical astronomy. Lick Observatory, under W. W. Campbell, reset the prevalent direction of graduate training in the US from classical astronomy to observational astrophysics. Princeton's graduate program was the most effective in producing outstanding astronomers. Its graduates were the only students of the 1920s and 30s with strong backgrounds in physics

  11. Methods in Astronomical Image Processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jörsäter, S.

    A Brief Introductory Note History of Astronomical Imaging Astronomical Image Data Images in Various Formats Digitized Image Data Digital Image Data Philosophy of Astronomical Image Processing Properties of Digital Astronomical Images Human Image Processing Astronomical vs. Computer Science Image Processing Basic Tools of Astronomical Image Processing Display Applications Calibration of Intensity Scales Calibration of Length Scales Image Re-shaping Feature Enhancement Noise Suppression Noise and Error Analysis Image Processing Packages: Design of AIPS and MIDAS AIPS MIDAS Reduction of CCD Data Bias Subtraction Clipping Preflash Subtraction Dark Subtraction Flat Fielding Sky Subtraction Extinction Correction Deconvolution Methods Rebinning/Combining Summary and Prospects for the Future

  12. Contributions of the Astronomical Observatory Skalnate Pleso, Volume 25

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zverko, Juraj; Antalova, Anna; Svoren, Jan; Chochol, Drahomir; Kucera, Ales; Porubcan, Vladimir

    1995-01-01

    Topics addressed include astrometry of minor planets, solar magnetic sectors and spatial distribution of LDE-type flares, radar observations of the Perseid meteor shower, periodic variations in the light curves of symbiotic stars, photometry of symbiotic stars, even-odd solar-cycle differences of corona brightness, solar eclipses, and index of cosmic ray fluctuations at neutron monitor energies. Also addressed is stratification of chromium abundance in CP-stars alpha2 Canum Venaticorum, epsilon Ursae Majoris, Sirius and Vega.

  13. Optical observations of meteors in RI Nikolaev Astronomical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shulga, Alexander; Sybiryakova, Yevgeniya; Kulichenko, Nikolay; Vovk, Vasyl

    2015-08-01

    Video observations of meteors at the RI NAO are conducted using meteor patrol, which includes 6 optical telescopes (4 lenses: f = 85 mm, f/1.8; 2 lenses: f = 100 mm, f/2.0) equipped with a TV CCD cameras WAT-902H2 (768×576, 8.6×8.3µ). The field of view of 4 telescopes is 3.2°×4.2° and 2.7°×3.6° for 2 telescopes. System doesn't have any intensifier. Each video system is contained in a hermetic capsule to prevent it from rain and other aggressive meteorological conditions. Cameras work in the interlace mode with rate 50 half-frames per second.During 2011-2014 4135 single station meteors were observed. The mean duration of observed meteor trajectories are in 0.05-0.6 s. Double station observation campaigns has been started in September 2013 and it is still working with baseline 11.8 km. During September 2013 - September 2014 total number of observed meteor trajectories was 1757. Number of double station meteors - 328. The mean accuracy of visible radiant determination is less than 0.5 arc sec, more than 80% of radiates have standard deviation less than 0.2 arc sec.

  14. Orbiting astronomical observatory battery and power system design

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ford, F. E.

    1977-01-01

    The battery design of OAO-C (OAO-3) is given and consists of three-20 ampere hour 22 series connected cells in the battery. There are three batteries per spacecraft. The packaging configuration is described. The charging-discharging operations and the voltage potential of the battery system are discussed. Graphs are presented for the voltage limits (battery voltage versus temperature) and end of dark voltages (battery voltage versus ampere-hours discharged) of the battery system used on OAO-3. Data tables are also presented which give a summary of the battery performance and a comparison of OAO-3 with OAO A-2.

  15. Orbiting Astronomical Observatory heat pipe flight performance data.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harwell, W.; Edelstein, F.; Mcintosh, R.; Ollendorf, S.

    1973-01-01

    The paper describes preflight and inflight performance checkout of the three isothermalizer heat pipes onboard the OAO-C spacecraft. The three pipes are: an axially grooved pipe, a pedestal artery pipe, and a self-priming spiral artery pipe. All pipes are 1/2-inch diameter tube rolled into a 48-inch diameter hoop. They are constructed of aluminum and use ammonia as working fluid. Periodic inflight performance checks have been made since launch in August 1972. No degradation in performance of any of the pipes has been detected. The flight data are in excellent agreement with ground test data.

  16. VEGAS: VErsatile GBT Astronomical Spectrometer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bussa, Srikanth; VEGAS Development Team

    2012-01-01

    The National Science Foundation Advanced Technologies and Instrumentation (NSF-ATI) program is funding a new spectrometer backend for the Green Bank Telescope (GBT). This spectrometer is being built by the CICADA collaboration - collaboration between the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) and the Center for Astronomy Signal Processing and Electronics Research (CASPER) at the University of California Berkeley.The backend is named as VErsatile GBT Astronomical Spectrometer (VEGAS) and will replace the capabilities of the existing spectrometers. This backend supports data processing from focal plane array systems. The spectrometer will be capable of processing up to 1.25 GHz bandwidth from 8 dual polarized beams or a bandwidth up to 10 GHz from a dual polarized beam.The spectrometer will be using 8-bit analog to digital converters (ADC), which gives a better dynamic range than existing GBT spectrometers. There will be 8 tunable digital sub-bands within the 1.25 GHz bandwidth, which will enhance the capability of simultaneous observation of multiple spectral transitions. The maximum spectral dump rate to disk will be about 0.5 msec. The vastly enhanced backend capabilities will support several science projects with the GBT. The projects include mapping temperature and density structure of molecular clouds; searches for organic molecules in the interstellar medium; determination of the fundamental constants of our evolving Universe; red-shifted spectral features from galaxies across cosmic time and survey for pulsars in the extreme gravitational environment of the Galactic Center.

  17. Astronomical surveys and big data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, Areg M.

    Recent all-sky and large-area astronomical surveys and their catalogued data over the whole range of electromagnetic spectrum, from γ -rays to radio waves, are reviewed, including such as Fermi-GLAST and INTEGRAL in γ -ray, ROSAT, XMM and Chandra in X-ray, GALEX in UV, SDSS and several POSS I and POSS II-based catalogues (APM, MAPS, USNO, GSC) in the optical range, 2MASS in NIR, WISE and AKARI IRC in MIR, IRAS and AKARI FIS in FIR, NVSS and FIRST in radio range, and many others, as well as the most important surveys giving optical images (DSS I and II, SDSS, etc.), proper motions (Tycho, USNO, Gaia), variability (GCVS, NSVS, ASAS, Catalina, Pan-STARRS), and spectroscopic data (FBS, SBS, Case, HQS, HES, SDSS, CALIFA, GAMA). An overall understanding of the coverage along the whole wavelength range and comparisons between various surveys are given: galaxy redshift surveys, QSO/AGN, radio, Galactic structure, and Dark Energy surveys. Astronomy has entered the Big Data era, with Astrophysical Virtual Observatories and Computational Astrophysics playing an important role in using and analyzing big data for new discoveries.

  18. Generating Mosaics of Astronomical Images

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bergou, Attila; Berriman, Bruce; Good, John; Jacob, Joseph; Katz, Daniel; Laity, Anastasia; Prince, Thomas; Williams, Roy

    2005-01-01

    "Montage" is the name of a service of the National Virtual Observatory (NVO), and of software being developed to implement the service via the World Wide Web. Montage generates science-grade custom mosaics of astronomical images on demand from input files that comply with the Flexible Image Transport System (FITS) standard and contain image data registered on projections that comply with the World Coordinate System (WCS) standards. "Science-grade" in this context signifies that terrestrial and instrumental features are removed from images in a way that can be described quantitatively. "Custom" refers to user-specified parameters of projection, coordinates, size, rotation, and spatial sampling. The greatest value of Montage is expected to lie in its ability to analyze images at multiple wavelengths, delivering them on a common projection, coordinate system, and spatial sampling, and thereby enabling further analysis as though they were part of a single, multi-wavelength image. Montage will be deployed as a computation-intensive service through existing astronomy portals and other Web sites. It will be integrated into the emerging NVO architecture and will be executed on the TeraGrid. The Montage software will also be portable and publicly available.

  19. Chrysanthos Notaras as an Astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rovithis, P.

    The aim of the present work is to emphasize the contribution of Chrysanthos Notaras (16??-1731) in the dispersion of Astronomy in the begining of the eighteenth century. Chysanthos Notaras, Partiarch of Jerusalem (1707-1731), is included among the most educated Greeks of his epoch. Although his first studies were suitable for ecclesiastic offices and religion, (since he studied ecclesiastic low, at Patavio, Italy), he continued at Paris for additional studies in Astronomy and Geography (1700). He became student of G.D. Cassini, who was the Director of Paris Observatory at that time, and he served as observer and astronomical instruments constructor, under Cassini's supervision. Chrysanthos Notaras included the teaching of "Astronomy" as a lesson in the schools of the Holy Sepulchre, in order to disperse the new ideas and knowledge about the earth and the universe among the young students. He published the first International Map (of the known world) in the Greek language in 1700 and in 1716 his book "Intoduction in Geography and Sphericals" was published in Paris. This book, written before 1707, was mainly an introduction to Astronomy and was used by the afterwards authors as an essential and basic manual and offered a lot to the enlightenment of the enslavement Greeks.

  20. The MicroObservatory Net

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brecher, K.; Sadler, P.

    1994-12-01

    A group of scientists, engineers and educators based at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) has developed a prototype of a small, inexpensive and fully integrated automated astronomical telescope and image processing system. The project team is now building five second generation instruments. The MicroObservatory has been designed to be used for classroom instruction by teachers as well as for original scientific research projects by students. Probably in no other area of frontier science is it possible for a broad spectrum of students (not just the gifted) to have access to state-of-the-art technologies that would allow for original research. The MicroObservatory combines the imaging power of a cooled CCD, with a self contained and weatherized reflecting optical telescope and mount. A microcomputer points the telescope and processes the captured images. The MicroObservatory has also been designed to be used as a valuable new capture and display device for real time astronomical imaging in planetariums and science museums. When the new instruments are completed in the next few months, they will be tried with high school students and teachers, as well as with museum groups. We are now planning to make the MicroObservatories available to students, teachers and other individual users over the Internet. We plan to allow the telescope to be controlled in real time or in batch mode, from a Macintosh or PC compatible computer. In the real-time mode, we hope to give individual access to all of the telescope control functions without the need for an "on-site" operator. Users would sign up for a specific period of time. In the batch mode, users would submit jobs for the telescope. After the MicroObservatory completed a specific job, the images would be e-mailed back to the user. At present, we are interested in gaining answers to the following questions: (1) What are the best approaches to scheduling real-time observations? (2) What criteria should be used

  1. Eminent Astronomers - Odessa University Graduates - In European Astronomy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Volyanskaya, M. Yu.

    1998-09-01

    A brief description of scientific activity of some eminent astronomers - graduates of the Odessa University named after I.I. Mechnikov (earlier - Novorossiiski University) in European astronomy is given: * Stratonov V.V. (1869-1938), professor, wellknown specialist in stellar astronomy, who was exiled abroad in 1992 among many scientists and writers, lived in Germany and Prague, where died; * Gansky A.P. (1870-1908) - famous investagator of the Sun, worked at the Meudon Observatory, ascended 9 times to Mount Blanc to make observations, was awarded by P.Z.C. Jansen medal of the Paris Academy of Sciences; * Donitch N.N. (1874-1956) - wellknown investigator of the Solar system, one of the first Romanian astronomers, a brilliant personality of the astronomical community of his time, a honorary member of the Romanian Academy of Sciences, died in Nice (France); * Zalesky Bogdan (1887-1927), specialist in astrometry, which became a wellknown astronomer in Poland. One of the founders and the first director of the University Observatory in Poznan; * Witkowsky Josef (1892- 1976) - specialist in astrometry, practical astronomy, and tidal phenomena studies, history of astronomy. Professor, Director of the Astronomical Centre in Poznan; *Stoiko N.M. ((1894-1976) - investigator of the irregularities of the Earth's rotation, the Earth's poles motions and the universal time determination. A member of many scientific societies. He was awarded by prizes of the Paris Academy of Sciences, of the French astronomical society, of the Royal Academy of Belgium. He worked at the Paris Observatory and was one of the Directors of the International Time Service; * Jardecky (Zhardecky) Vietcheslaw (1896-1962), worked at the Department of Mathematics of the Beograd University; eminent specialist in the field of Mechanics of Fluids; After the Second World War he emmigrated to the USA, Professor of Geophysics at the Columbia Univeristy (New York), where died.

  2. Automation of Coordinated Planning Between Observatories: The Visual Observation Layout Tool (VOLT)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Maks, Lori; Koratkar, Anuradha; Kerbel, Uri; Pell, Vince

    2002-01-01

    Fulfilling the promise of the era of great observatories, NASA now has more than three space-based astronomical telescopes operating in different wavebands. This situation provides astronomers with the unique opportunity of simultaneously observing a target in multiple wavebands with these observatories. Currently scheduling multiple observatories simultaneously, for coordinated observations, is highly inefficient. Coordinated observations require painstaking manual collaboration among the observatory staff at each observatory. Because they are time-consuming and expensive to schedule, observatories often limit the number of coordinated observations that can be conducted. In order to exploit new paradigms for observatory operation, the Advanced Architectures and Automation Branch of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center has developed a tool called the Visual Observation Layout Tool (VOLT). The main objective of VOLT is to provide a visual tool to automate the planning of coordinated observations by multiple astronomical observatories. Four of NASA's space-based astronomical observatories - the Hubble Space Telescope (HST), Far Ultraviolet Spectroscopic Explorer (FUSE), Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE) and Chandra - are enthusiastically pursuing the use of VOLT. This paper will focus on the purpose for developing VOLT, as well as the lessons learned during the infusion of VOLT into the planning and scheduling operations of these observatories.

  3. Astronomical education in Mongolia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dulmaa, A.; Tsolmon, R.; Lkhagvajav, Ch.; Jargalsuren, Sh.; Bayartungalag, B.; Zaya, M.

    2011-06-01

    The history, current situation, education and future directions of modern Mongolian space science and astronomy is reviewed. This paper discusses recent efforts to develop astronomy education and research capacity in Mongolia with cooperation of the International Astronomical Union. Various capacity-building initiatives in space science including remote sensing in Mongolia are discussed.

  4. Astronomical Microdensitometry Conference

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Klinglesmith, D. A. (Editor)

    1984-01-01

    The status of the current microdensitometers used for digitizing astronomical imagery is discussed. The tests and improvements that have and can be made to the Photometric Data System PDS microdensitometer are examined. The various types of microdensitometers that currently exist in the world are investigated. Papers are presented on the future needs and the data processing problems associated with digitizing large images.

  5. ASURV: Astronomical SURVival Statistics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feigelson, E. D.; Nelson, P. I.; Isobe, T.; LaValley, M.

    2014-06-01

    ASURV (Astronomical SURVival Statistics) provides astronomy survival analysis for right- and left-censored data including the maximum-likelihood Kaplan-Meier estimator and several univariate two-sample tests, bivariate correlation measures, and linear regressions. ASURV is written in FORTRAN 77, and is stand-alone and does not call any specialized libraries.

  6. Misconceptions of Astronomical Distances

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Miller, Brian W.; Brewer, William F.

    2010-01-01

    Previous empirical studies using multiple-choice procedures have suggested that there are misconceptions about the scale of astronomical distances. The present study provides a quantitative estimate of the nature of this misconception among US university students by asking them, in an open-ended response format, to make estimates of the distances…

  7. Russian astronomical software

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lukashova, Marina V.; Glebova, Nina I.; Netsvetaev, Ilja N.; Netsvetaeva, Galina A.; Parijskaja, Ekaterina Ju.; Pitieva, Elena V.; Sveshnikov, Michael L.; Skripnichenko, Vladimir I.

    2012-08-01

    Institute of Applied Astronomy of RAS has published “ The Astronomical Yearbook ” ( AY) with 1921, “ The Nautical Astronomical Yearbook ” (NAY) with 1930, “ The Nautical Astronomical Almanac ”’ biennial (NAA - 2) with 2001. The new IAU2006/2000 precession - nutation models, and the FK6/HIPPARCOS stellar catalogues were used in these editions. Ephemeris editions are based on the domestic EPM2004 (IAA RAS) theory of movement of planets, Sun and Moon. The electronic versions are developed for two editions. The important stage of work is creation of “The Personal Astronomical Yearbook ”’ (PersAY). The system gives ample opportunities to the user to put and to solve tasks of calculation of ephemerides for any moment in various time scales, and for any location of the observer on a terrestrial surface. Also in PersAY it is possible to calculate by means of DE405/LE405 theory to make comparison with others ephemeris editions. The time interval of validity of the system makes 2010 - 2015. Besides system of the removed access the "Navigator" was developed. It intended to solve some the navigating tasks describe d in NAA - 2. The system is accessible on a site http://shturman.ipa.nw.ru/ (in Russian). In electronic systems as in Y the same reduce theories and the theory of movement of planets, the Sun, the Moon are used. All calculations are work out on the basis of the multifunctional software system ERA.

  8. Misconceptions of Astronomical Distances

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Miller, Brian W.; Brewer, William F.

    2010-01-01

    Previous empirical studies using multiple-choice procedures have suggested that there are misconceptions about the scale of astronomical distances. The present study provides a quantitative estimate of the nature of this misconception among US university students by asking them, in an open-ended response format, to make estimates of the distances…

  9. SAOIMAGE -- Astronomical image display

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morris, Rhys; Privett, G. J.

    SAOimage is an astronomical image display program which works on computers with X-window displays. It allows you to manipulate images in a number of ways, see the changes applied, and when you are happy with the result, produce a hard copy on a Postscript printer. An example of the output is included with this document.

  10. Recent results at the Canarian Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Muñoz-Tuñón, C.; Varela, A. M.; Fuensalida, J. J.

    2007-10-01

    During the last years a mayor effort has been carried out both, in defining key parameters to quantify the quality of a site for astronomical observations, and to design reliable techniques and tools to compare different sites. Here, we will revise some of the parameters relevant for astronomical site evaluation, and we will also brief on the instruments currently available for their measurements. The Observatories at the Canaries, Observatorio del Roque de los Muchachos (ORM) and Observatorio del Teide (OT) have been used as test bench for the development of new techniques and tools for more than three decades. Results on statistical measurements and techniques, emphasizing the most recent ones in the framework of the FP6 site selection program at the Canarian Observatories are given.

  11. Beyond the Observatory: Reflections on the Centennial

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Devorkin, D. H.

    1999-05-01

    One of the many unexpected side-benefits of acting as editor of the AAS centennial volume was the chance to take a fresh look at some of the personalities who helped to shape the American Astronomical Society. A common characteristic of these people was their energy, compassion and drive to go "Beyond the Observatory," to borrow a phrase from Harlow Shapley. But what did going `beyond the observatory' mean to Shapley, or to the others who shaped and maintained the Society in its first one hundred years of life? Just as the discipline of astronomy has changed in profound ways in the past century, so has the American Astronomical Society changed, along with the people who have been its leaders and its sustainers and the culture that has fostered it. The Centennial meeting of the Society offers a chance to reflect on the people who have given American astronomy its sense of community identity.

  12. Astronomical researches in Poincaré's and Romanian works

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stavinschi, M.; Mioc, V.

    2005-09-01

    Henri Poincaré was not only a honorary member of the Romanian Academy, but also an important collaborator of many Romanian mathematicians and astronomers. It is sufficient to mention Spiru Haret, the first doctor in mathematics at Sorbonne, or Nicolae Coculescu, the first director of the Astronomical Observatory of Bucharest. The 150th anniversary of the birth of the illustrious French personality offered us a good opportunity to study the relations he and two other Poincaré, Raymond and Lucien, had with Romania.

  13. Thomas Kuhn's Influence on Astronomers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shipman, Harry L.

    2000-01-01

    Surveys the astronomical community on their familiarity with the work of Thomas Kuhn. Finds that for some astronomers, Kuhn's thought resonated well with their picture of how science is done and provided perspectives on their scientific careers. (Author/CCM)

  14. Thomas Kuhn's Influence on Astronomers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shipman, Harry L.

    2000-01-01

    Surveys the astronomical community on their familiarity with the work of Thomas Kuhn. Finds that for some astronomers, Kuhn's thought resonated well with their picture of how science is done and provided perspectives on their scientific careers. (Author/CCM)

  15. High School Teachers as Astronomers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sather, Robert

    1977-01-01

    Discusses a joint research program between several high school teachers and solar system astronomers in which data were collected on photoelectric observations of asteroids and minor planets via astronomical telescopes. (MLH)

  16. High School Teachers as Astronomers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sather, Robert

    1977-01-01

    Discusses a joint research program between several high school teachers and solar system astronomers in which data were collected on photoelectric observations of asteroids and minor planets via astronomical telescopes. (MLH)

  17. Community College Class Devoted to Astronomical Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Genet, R. M.; Genet, C. L.

    2002-05-01

    A class at a small community college, Central Arizona College, was dedicated to astronomical research. Although hands-on research is usually reserved for professionals or graduate students, and occasionally individual undergraduate seniors, we decided to introduce community college students to science by devoting an entire class to research. Nine students were formed into three closely cooperating teams. The class as a whole decided that all three teams would observe Cepheid stars photometrically using a robotic telescope at the Fairborn Observatory. Speaker-phone conference calls were made to Kenneth E. Kissell for help on Cepheid selection, Michael A. Seeds for instructions on the use of the Phoenix-10 robotic telescope, and Douglas S. Hall for assitance in selecting appropriate comparison and check stars. The students obtained critical references on past observations from Konkoly Observatory via airmail. They spent several long night sessions at our apartment compiling the data, making phase calculations, and creating graphs. Finally, the students wrote up their results for publication in a forthcoming special issue of the international journal on stellar photometry, the IAPPP Communication. We concluded that conducting team research is an excellent way to introduce community college students to science, that a class devoted to cooperation as opposed to competition was refreshing, and that group student conference calls with working astronomers were inspiring. A semester, however, is a rather short time to initiate and complete research projects. The students were Sally Baldwin, Cory Bushnell, Bryan Dehart, Pamela Frantz, Carl Fugate, Mike Grill, Jessica Harger, Klay Lapa, and Diane Wiseman. We are pleased to acknowledge the assistance provided by the astronomers mentioned above, James Stuckey (Campus Dean), and our Union Institute and University doctoral committee members Florence Pittman Matusky, Donald S. Hayes, and Karen S. Grove.

  18. Using Virtual Observatory Services in Sky View

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McGlynn, Thomas A.

    2007-01-01

    For over a decade Skyview has provided astronomers and the public with easy access to survey and imaging data from all wavelength regimes. SkyView has pioneered many of the concepts that underlie the Virtual Observatory. Recently SkyView has been released as a distributable package which uses VO protocols to access image and catalog services. This chapter describes how to use the Skyview as a local service and how to customize it to access additional VO services and local data.

  19. Demetrios Eginitis: Restorer of the Athens Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Theodossiou, E. Th.; Manimanis, V. N.; Mantarakis, P.

    2007-07-01

    Demetrios Eginitis (1862-1934), one of the most eminent modern Greek astronomers, directed the National Observatory of Athens for 44 years (1890-1933). He was the fourth director since its founding, and was responsible for the restoration and modernization of the Observatory, which was in a state of inactivity after the death of Julius Schmidt in 1884. Eginitis ordered the purchase of modern instruments, educated the personnel, enriched the library with necessary and up-to-date books and arranged for new buildings to be built to house new telescopes and accommodate the personnel. Moreover, he divided the National Observatory of Athens into three separate Departments: the Astronomical, the Meteorological and the Geodynamic. D. Eginitis' contribution to Greek society went beyond his astronomical accomplishments. He was instrumental in the adoption of the Eastern European time zone for local time in Greece, and he succeeded in changing the official calendar from the Julian to the Gregorian. Having served twice as Minister of Education, he created many schools, founded the Academy of Athens and the Experimental School of the University of Athens. Eginitis was fluent in French, German and English, and therefore was the official representative of his country in numerous international conferences and councils.

  20. Haystack Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1972-01-01

    Radio astronomy programs comprise three very-long-baseline interferometer projects, ten spectral line investigations, one continuum mapping in the 0.8 cm region, and one monitoring of variable sources. A low-noise mixer was used in mapping observations of 3C273 at 31 GHz and in detecting of a new methyl alcohol line at 36,169 MHz in Sgr B2. The new Mark 2 VLBI recording terminal was used in galactic H2O source observations using Haystack and the Crimean Observatory, USSR. One feature in W29 appears to have a diameter of 0.3 millisec of arc and a brightness temperature of 1.4 x 10 to the 15th power K. Geodetic baseline measurements via VLBI between Green Bank and Haystack are mutually consistent within a few meters. Radar investigations of Mercury, Venus, Mars, and the Moon have continued. The favorable opposition of Mars and improvements in the radar permit measurements on a number of topographic features with unprecedented accuracy, including scarps and crater walls. The floor of Mare Serenitatis slopes upward towards the northeast and is also the location of a strong gravitational anomaly.

  1. The Expansion of the Astronomical Photographic Data Archive at PARI

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cline, J. Donald; Barker, Thurburn; Castelaz, Michael

    2017-01-01

    A diverse set of photometric, astrometric, spectral and surface brightness data exist on decades of photographic glass plates. The Astronomical Photographic Data Archive (APDA) at the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI) was established in November 2007 and is dedicated to the task of collecting, restoring, preserving and storing astronomical photographic data and PARI continues to accept collections. APDA is also tasked with scanning each image and establishing a database of images that can be accessed via the Internet by the global community of scientists, researchers and students. APDA is a new type of astronomical observatory - one that harnesses analog data of the night sky taken for more than a century and making that data available in a digital format.In 2016, APDA expanded from 50 collections with about 220,000 plates to more than 55 collections and more than 340,000 plates and films. These account for more than 30% of all astronomical photographic data in the United States. The largest of the new acquisitions are the astronomical photographic plates in the Yale University collection. We present details of the newly added collections and review of other collections in APDA.

  2. Preserving Dark Skies: Do Astronomers Care?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davis, D. R.; Crawford, D. L.

    2001-12-01

    Ground based telescopes are, even in this era of planetary missions and space telescopes, the dominant source of data on solar system objects. Yet many of the premier observing sites in the world are threatened by increasing artificial light that is scattered into the sky - light pollution. World class observing sites such as Mt. Wilson have long since lost the ability to do cutting edge faint object science and observatories in Southern Arizona have been recently threatened - the Canoa Ranch development being the most recent example. Yet there are actions that can be taken to preserve dark skies, not only for astronomy, but also for the benefit of all humanity. Lead by astronomers, effective outdoor lighting codes have been produced and adopted by many jurisdictional authorities. Advocacy organizations such as the International Dark-sky Association (IDA) distribute educational material on how to preserve dark skies through good outdoor lighting practices. Other institutions, such as the National Park Service, are realizing that dark skies are an integral part of the wilderness experience and are taking steps to preserve the quality of their skies. However, the primary beneficaries of dark sky preservation efforts, namely the ground based astronomical community, have largely failed to become involved in efforts to preserve dark skies. For example, only a few percent of the membership of the American Astronomical Society is active in light pollution work or is even a member of IDA. In this presentation, Iwe will outline what is being done locally to preserve dark skies througout the world. In addition, some observations on the level of support from the astronomical community will be offered.

  3. Astronomers without borders

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simmons, Mike

    2011-06-01

    ``Astronomers Without Borders'' is a new global organisational dedicated to furthering understanding and goodwill across national and cultural boundaries using the universal appeal of astronomy and space science. A growing network of affiliate organisations brings together clubs, magazines and other organizations involved in astronomy and space science. Forums, galleries, video conferences and other interactive technologies are used to connect participants around the world. Sharing of resources and direct connections through travel programs are also planned. One project, ``The World at Night'' (TWAN), has become an Special Project of IYA2009. TWAN creates wide-angle images of the night sky in important natural and historic settings around the world, dramatically demonstrating the universal nature and appeal of the night sky. ``Astronomers Without Borders'' is also a leader of the 100 Hours of Astronomy IYA2009 Global Cornerstone Project.

  4. Network resources for astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andernach, H.; Hanisch, Robert J.; Murtagh, F.

    1994-11-01

    The amount of data produced by large observational facilities and space missions has led to the archiving and on-line accessibility of much of these data, available to the entire astronomical community. This allows a much wider multifrequency approach to astronomical research than previously possible. Here we provide an overview of these services, and give a basic description of their contents and possibilities for accessing them. Apart from services providing observational data, many of those providing general information, e.g., on addresses, bibliographies, software, etc., are also described. The field is rapidly growing with improved network technology, and out attempt to keep the report as complete and up-to-date as possible will inevitably be outdated shortly. We will endeavor to maintain an updated version of this document on-line.

  5. Astronomical Kalendar-2011

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kozlovskii, Alexander Nikolaevich; Kuznetsov, Alexander

    The webpage give the Astronomical Kalendars for the Months of 2010, 2011 as well as a General Kalendar of astronomical events for schoolars and beginners for 2011 to be downloaded in pdf or word formats. The Kalendar for schoolars and beginners include on 149 pp. the following sections: 1) recommendations for Schoolars 2) the general review of events for 2011 3) The Moon in 2011 4) Moon and Sun Ephemerides with comments 5) Planets visibility for the latituide 56 Deg N. 6) Planets conjunctions for 2011 7) Eclipses in 2011 8) Stars and planets occultations by the Moon 9) Phenomena for Jupiter satellites 10) Phenomena for Saturn satellites 11) Small Planets (Iris, Thalia, Nisa, Junona, Gigeia, Ariadna, Vesta, Cerera and other) 12) Comets (C/2009 P1 ( Garradd ), 103P/Hartley 2, P/2006 T1 ( Levy ) 13) variable Stars 14) Meteor showers. Both Calendars include maps and tables

  6. Astronomers as Software Developers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pildis, Rachel A.

    2016-01-01

    Astronomers know that their research requires writing, adapting, and documenting computer software. Furthermore, they often have to learn new computer languages and figure out how existing programs work without much documentation or guidance and with extreme time pressure. These are all skills that can lead to a software development job, but recruiters and employers probably won't know that. I will discuss all the highly useful experience that astronomers may not know that they already have, and how to explain that knowledge to others when looking for non-academic software positions. I will also talk about some of the pitfalls I have run into while interviewing for jobs and working as a developer, and encourage you to embrace the curiosity employers might have about your non-standard background.

  7. Ancient Egyptian Astronomical Calander

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marshall, Patrice; Lodhi, M. A. K.

    2001-03-01

    In this paper, we discuss how certain astronomical concepts are related to the ancient Egyptian culture and their daily life. One of them is different ways of creating their calendar systems. The ancient Egyptian calendar seems to have quite a bit of its origin in astronomy and its development over the course of history. There is an important role played by events, as determined in the heavens, in developing their calendar system. Along with astronomical observations by the ancient people of Egypt, there were several outside cultures that helped develop their calendar system and Egyptian idea of how life was created on this planet, most notably the inclusion of the star Sirius in the constellation of Canis Major. We give a brief discussion of these influences. For the ancient Egyptians, the cycle of life and death is a concept that ties in with a calendar system used to determine daily events.

  8. Misconceptions about astronomical magnitudes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schulman, Eric; Cox, Caroline V.

    1997-10-01

    The present system of astronomical magnitudes was created as an inverse scale by Claudius Ptolemy in about 140 A.D. and was defined to be logarithmic in 1856 by Norman Pogson, who believed that human eyes respond logarithmically to the intensity of light. Although scientists have known for some time that the response is instead a power law, astronomers continue to use the Pogson magnitude scale. The peculiarities of this system make it easy for students to develop numerous misconceptions about how and why to use magnitudes. We present a useful exercise in the use of magnitudes to derive a cosmologically interesting quantity (the mass-to-light ratio for spiral galaxies), with potential pitfalls pointed out and explained.

  9. Vibration budget for observatory equipment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    MacMartin, Douglas G.; Thompson, Hugh

    2015-07-01

    Vibration from equipment mounted on the telescope and in summit support buildings has been a source of performance degradation at existing astronomical observatories, particularly for adaptive optics performance. Rather than relying only on best practices to minimize vibration, we present here a vibration budget that specifies allowable force levels from each source of vibration in the observatory (e.g., pumps, chillers, cryocoolers, etc.). This design tool helps ensure that the total optical performance degradation due to vibration is less than the corresponding error budget allocation and is also useful in design trade-offs, specifying isolation requirements for equipment, and tightening or widening individual equipment vibration specifications as necessary. The vibration budget relies on model-based analysis of the optical consequences that result from forces applied at different locations and frequencies, including both image jitter and primary mirror segment motion. We develop this tool here for the Thirty Meter Telescope but hope that this approach will be broadly useful to other observatories, not only in the design phase, but for verification and operations as well.

  10. High Energy Astronomy Observatory (HEAO)

    NASA Image and Video Library

    1980-01-01

    The dramatic change in x-ray emission from the Terzan 2 cluster is shown in this series of 2.5-minute exposures taken with the High Energy Astronomy Observatory (HEAO)-2/Einstein Observatory immediately before, during, and after the burst. Total exposure (20 minutes) of the object, including the outburst, is shown in the fourth photograph. These images represent the first observation of an x-ray burst in progress. The actual burst lasted 50 seconds. Among the rarest, and most bizarre, phenomena observed by x-ray astronomers are the so-called cosmic bursters (x-ray sources that suddenly and dramatically increase in intensity then subside). These sudden bursts of intense x-ray radiation apparently come from compact objects with a diameter smaller than 30 miles (48 kilometers). Yet, despite their minuscule size, a typical x-ray burster can release more x-ray energy in a single brief burst than our Sun does in an entire week. The HEAO-2, the first imaging and largest x-ray telescope built to date, was capable of producing actual photographs of x-ray objects. Shortly after launch, the HEAO-2 was nicknamed the Einstein Observatory by its scientific experimenters in honor of the centernial of the birth of Albert Einstein, whose concepts of relativity and gravitation have influenced much of modern astrophysics, particularly x-ray astronomy. The HEAO was designed and developed by TRW, Inc. under the project management of the Marshall Space Flight Center.

  11. High Energy Astronomy Observatory (HEAO)

    NASA Image and Video Library

    1975-07-01

    This illustration is a schematic of the High Energy Astronomy Observatory (HEAO)-2 and its experiments. It shows the focal plane instruments (at the right) plus the associated electronics for operating the telescope as it transmitted its observations to the ground. A fifth instrument, the Monitor Proportional Counter, is located near the front of the telescope. Four separate astronomical instruments are located at the focus of this telescope and they could be interchanged for different types of observations as the observatory pointed at interesting areas of the Sky. Two of these instruments produced images; a High Resolution Imaging Detector and an Imaging Proportional Counter. The other two instruments, the Solid State Spectrometer and the Crystal Spectrometer, measured the spectra of x-ray objects. A fifth instrument, the Monitor Proportional Counter, continuously viewed space independently to study a wider band of x-ray wavelengths and to examine the rapid time variations in the sources. The HEAO-2 was nicknamed the Einstein Observatory by its scientific experimenters in honor of the centernial of the birth of Albert Einstein, whose concepts of relativity and gravitation have influenced much of modern astrophysics, particularly x-ray astronomy. The HEAO-2, designed and developed by TRW, Inc. under the project management of the Marshall Space Flight Center, was launched aboard an Atlas/Centaur launch vehicle on November 13, 1978. The HEAO-2 was originally identified as HEAO-B but the designation was changed once the spacecraft achieved orbit.

  12. SOFIA's Choice: Scheduling Observations for an Airborne Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frank, Jeremy; Kurklu, Elif; Koga, Dennis (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    We describe the problem of scheduling observations for an airborne observatory. The problem is more complex than traditional scheduling problems in that it incorporates complex constraints relating the feasibility of an astronomical observation to the position and time of a mobile observatory, as well as traditional temporal constraints and optimization criteria. We describe the problem, its proposed solution and the empirical validation of that solution.

  13. ASTRONOMY: The Virtual Observatory Moves Closer to Reality.

    PubMed

    Schilling, G

    2000-07-14

    Data from decades of observations by dozens of instruments may soon be accessible over the Internet, changing the way that astronomy is done around the world. The National Virtual Observatory will be an electronic web that gives astronomers access to terabytes of celestial data with the click of a mouse. The virtual observatory promises to make possible new analyses of the heavens by weaving together information from facilities around the world--and in space.

  14. Astrobiology: An astronomer's perspective

    SciTech Connect

    Bergin, Edwin A.

    2014-12-08

    In this review we explore aspects of the field of astrobiology from an astronomical viewpoint. We therefore focus on the origin of life in the context of planetary formation, with additional emphasis on tracing the most abundant volatile elements, C, H, O, and N that are used by life on Earth. We first explore the history of life on our planet and outline the current state of our knowledge regarding the delivery of the C, H, O, N elements to the Earth. We then discuss how astronomers track the gaseous and solid molecular carriers of these volatiles throughout the process of star and planet formation. It is now clear that the early stages of star formation fosters the creation of water and simple organic molecules with enrichments of heavy isotopes. These molecules are found as ice coatings on the solid materials that represent microscopic beginnings of terrestrial worlds. Based on the meteoritic and cometary record, the process of planet formation, and the local environment, lead to additional increases in organic complexity. The astronomical connections towards this stage are only now being directly made. Although the exact details are uncertain, it is likely that the birth process of star and planets likely leads to terrestrial worlds being born with abundant water and organics on the surface.

  15. Astrobiology: An astronomer's perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bergin, Edwin A.

    2014-12-01

    In this review we explore aspects of the field of astrobiology from an astronomical viewpoint. We therefore focus on the origin of life in the context of planetary formation, with additional emphasis on tracing the most abundant volatile elements, C, H, O, and N that are used by life on Earth. We first explore the history of life on our planet and outline the current state of our knowledge regarding the delivery of the C, H, O, N elements to the Earth. We then discuss how astronomers track the gaseous and solid molecular carriers of these volatiles throughout the process of star and planet formation. It is now clear that the early stages of star formation fosters the creation of water and simple organic molecules with enrichments of heavy isotopes. These molecules are found as ice coatings on the solid materials that represent microscopic beginnings of terrestrial worlds. Based on the meteoritic and cometary record, the process of planet formation, and the local environment, lead to additional increases in organic complexity. The astronomical connections towards this stage are only now being directly made. Although the exact details are uncertain, it is likely that the birth process of star and planets likely leads to terrestrial worlds being born with abundant water and organics on the surface.

  16. Influences of German science and scientists on Melbourne Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Clark, Barry A. J.

    The multidisciplinary approach of Alexander von Humboldt in scientific studies of the natural world in the first half of the nineteenth century gained early and lasting acclaim. Later, given the broad scientific interests of colonial Victoria's first Government Astronomer Robert Ellery, one could expect to find some evidence of the Humboldtian approach in the operations of Williamstown Observatory and its successor, Melbourne Observatory. On examination, and without discounting the importance of other international scientific contributions, it appears that Melbourne Observatory was indeed substantially influenced from afar by Humboldt and other German scientists, and in person by Georg Neumayer in particular. Some of the ways in which these influences acted are obvious but others are less so. Like the other Australian state observatories, in its later years Melbourne Observatory had to concentrate its diminishing resources on positional astronomy and timekeeping. Along with Sydney Observatory, it has survived almost intact to become a heritage treasure, perpetuating appreciation of its formative influences.

  17. Exploring the Digital Universe with Europe's Astrophysical Virtual Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2001-12-01

    N° 73-2001 - Paris, 5 December 2001 The aim of AVO is to give astronomers instant access to the vast databanks now being built up by the world's observatories and forming what is in effect a "digital sky". Using AVO astronomers will be able, for example, to retrieve the elusive traces of the passage of an asteroid as it passes the Earth and so predict its future path and perhaps warn of a possible impact. When a giant star comes to the end of its life in a cataclysmic explosion called a supernova, they will be able to access the digital sky and pinpoint the star shortly before it exploded, adding invaluable data to the study of the evolution of stars. Modern observatories observe the sky continuously and data accumulates remorselessly in the digital archives. The growth rate is impressive and many hundreds of terabytes of data -corresponding to many thousands of billions of pixels - are already available to scientists. The real sky is being digitally reconstructed in the databanks. The volume and complexity of data and information available to astronomers are overwhelming. Hence the problem of how astronomers can possibly manage, distribute and analyse this great wealth of data. The Astrophysical Virtual Observatory will enable them to meet the challenge and "put the Universe online". AVO is a three-year project, funded by the European Commission under its Research and Technological Development (RTD) scheme, to design and implement a virtual observatory for the European astronomical community. The Commission has awarded a contract valued at EUR 4m for the project, starting on 15 November. AVO will provide software tools to enable astronomers to access the multi-wavelength data archives over the Internet and so give them the capability to resolve fundamental questions about the Universe by probing the digital sky. Equivalent searches of the "real" sky would, in comparison, both be prohibitively costly and take far too long. Towards a Global Virtual Observatory The

  18. A component based astronomical visualization tool for instrument control

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Briegel, Florian; Berwein, Jürgen; Kittmann, Frank; Pavlov, Alexey

    2008-07-01

    For various astronomical instruments developed at the Max-Planck-Institute-Heidelberg there was a need for a highly flexible display and control tool. Many display tools (ximtool, DS9, skycat,...) are available for astronomy, but all this applications are monolitic and can't be easily enriched by plugins for interaction with the graphical display, and other functionalities for remote access and control of the instrument and data pipepline. It was developed on top of Trolltechs Cross-Platform Rich Client Development Framework Qt,1 the modern middleware Internet Communications Engine 2 from ZeroC and the template based SOA developer framework for astronomical instrumentation - NICE.3 The display tool is used on the Calar Alto Observatory, Spain) as a guider, for a wide field imager and guider at the Wise Observatory (Israel; for the LBT interferometer Linc-Nirvana, USA).

  19. Heavens Open Up for UK Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2002-07-01

    A significant milestone for British and European science occurred today (July 8, 2002) when the Council of the European Southern Observatory (ESO) met in London. At this historical meeting, the United Kingdom was formally welcomed into ESO by the nine other member states. The UK, one of the leading nations in astronomical research, now joins one of the world's major astronomical organisations. UK astronomers will now be able to use the four 8.2-metre and several 1.8-metre telescopes that comprise the Very Large Telescope (VLT) facility located at the Paranal Observatory in the northern part of the Atacama desert in Chile, as well as two 4-m class telescopes and several smaller ones at the ESO La Silla Observatory further south. The UK will also benefit from increased involvement in the design and construction of the Atacama Large Millimetre Array (ALMA), a network of 64 twelve-metre telescopes also sited in Chile, and play a defining role in ESO's 100-metre Overwhelmingly Large Telescope (OWL). Sir Martin Rees , The Astronomer Royal, said, "Joining ESO is good for UK science, and I think good for Europe as well. It offers us access to the VLT's 8-m class telescopes and restores the UK's full competitiveness in optical astronomy. We're now guaranteed full involvement in ALMA and in the next generation of giant optical instruments - projects that will be at the forefront of the research in the next decade and beyond. Moreover, our commitment to ESO should enhance its chances of forging ahead of the US in these technically challenging and high profile scientific projects. UK membership of ESO is a significant and welcome outcome of this government's increasing investment in science". Prof. Ian Halliday , Chief Executive of the Particle Physics and Astronomy Research Council (PPARC), the UK's strategic science investment agency said, "The United Kingdom already participates in Europe's flagship particle physics research and the space science research programmes through

  20. Astronomical Software Directory Service

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hanisch, Robert J.; Payne, Harry; Hayes, Jeffrey

    1997-01-01

    With the support of NASA's Astrophysics Data Program (NRA 92-OSSA-15), we have developed the Astronomical Software Directory Service (ASDS): a distributed, searchable, WWW-based database of software packages and their related documentation. ASDS provides integrated access to 56 astronomical software packages, with more than 16,000 URLs indexed for full-text searching. Users are performing about 400 searches per month. A new aspect of our service is the inclusion of telescope and instrumentation manuals, which prompted us to change the name to the Astronomical Software and Documentation Service. ASDS was originally conceived to serve two purposes: to provide a useful Internet service in an area of expertise of the investigators (astronomical software), and as a research project to investigate various architectures for searching through a set of documents distributed across the Internet. Two of the co-investigators were then installing and maintaining astronomical software as their primary job responsibility. We felt that a service which incorporated our experience in this area would be more useful than a straightforward listing of software packages. The original concept was for a service based on the client/server model, which would function as a directory/referral service rather than as an archive. For performing the searches, we began our investigation with a decision to evaluate the Isite software from the Center for Networked Information Discovery and Retrieval (CNIDR). This software was intended as a replacement for Wide-Area Information Service (WAIS), a client/server technology for performing full-text searches through a set of documents. Isite had some additional features that we considered attractive, and we enjoyed the cooperation of the Isite developers, who were happy to have ASDS as a demonstration project. We ended up staying with the software throughout the project, making modifications to take advantage of new features as they came along, as well as

  1. From astronomer to architect

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Woods, Bryan

    2004-06-01

    The career of Sir Christopher Wren as an architect is well known. He designed more than 50 churches in London, including St.Paul's Cathedral. Amongst his many secular buildings is the old Royal Observatory in Greenwich. However, less familiar are his earlier achievments in astronomy. Wren made important observations of the Moon, Saturn and comets, and improved the telescope.

  2. History of Chandra X-Ray Observatory

    NASA Image and Video Library

    1999-01-01

    This photograph shows TRW technicians preparing the assembled Chandra X-Ray Observatory (CXO) for an official unveiling at TRW Space and Electronics Group of Redondo Beach, California. The CXO is formerly known as the Advanced X-Ray Astrophysics Facility (AXAF), which was renamed in honor of the late Indian-American Astronomer, Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar in 1999. The CXO will help astronomers world-wide better understand the structure and evolution of the universe by studying powerful sources of x-rays such as exploding stars, matter falling into black holes, and other exotic celestial objects. X-ray astronomy can only be done from space because Earth's atmosphere blocks x-rays from reaching the surface. The Observatory provides images that are 50 times more detailed than previous x-ray missions. At more than 45 feet in length and weighing more than 5 tons, it will be one of the largest objects ever placed in Earth orbit by the Space Shuttle. TRW, Inc. was the prime contractor and assembled and tested the observatory for NASA. The CXO program is managed by the Marshall Space Flight Center. The Observatory was launched on July 22, 1999 aboard the Space Shuttle Columbia, STS-93 mission. (Image courtesy of TRW)

  3. History of Chandra X-Ray Observatory

    NASA Image and Video Library

    1998-01-01

    This photograph shows a TRW technician inspecting the completely assembled Chandra X-ray Observatory (CXO) in the Thermal Vacuum Chamber at TRW Space and Electronics Group of Redondo Beach, California. The CXO is formerly known as the Advanced X-Ray Astrophysics Facility (AXAF), which was renamed in honor of the late Indian-American Astronomer, Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar in 1999. The CXO will help astronomers worldwide better understand the structure and evolution of the universe by studying powerful sources of x-rays such as exploding stars, matter falling into black holes and other exotic celestial objects. X-ray astronomy can only be done from space because Earth's atmosphere blocks x-rays from reaching the surface. The Observatory provides images that are 50 times more detailed than previous x-ray missions. At more than 45 feet in length and weighing more than 5 tons, it will be one of the largest objects ever placed in Earth orbit by the Space Shuttle. TRW, Inc. was the prime contractor and assembled and tested the observatory for NASA. The CXO program is managed by the Marshall Space Flight Center. The Observatory was launched on July 22, 1999 aboard the Space Shuttle Columbia, STS-93 mission. (Image courtesy of TRW)

  4. 150 years of magnetic observatories: Recent researches on world data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barraclough, D. R.; Clark, T. D. G.; Cowley, S. W. H.; Hibberd, F. H.; Hide, R.; Kerridge, D. J.; Lowes, F. J.; Malin, S. R. C.; Murphy, T.; Rishbeth, H.; Runcorn, S. K.; Soffel, H. C.; Stewart, D. N.; Stuart, W. F.; Whaler, K. A.; Winch, D. E.

    1992-01-01

    A joint Discussion Meeting of the Royal Astronomical Society and the Royal Irish Academy, held on January 11th, 1991, commemorated the establishment of some early magnetic observatories, discussed recent research using global geomagnetic data and described the present status of magnetic observatories in the United Kingdom. The observatory and instruments at the Dublin magnetic observatory; the origins of the Greenwich magnetic observatory, and why it eventually had to be resited; and the history of the Munich magnetic observatory formed the historical part of the proceedings. Current research topics discussed were the geomagnetic secular variation and deep Earth structure and dynamics; fluid flow patterns near the top of the core; the origin of the annual variation of the geomagnetic field; results of an analysis of monthly means from some British observatories; a new theory of the geomagnetic daily variation; and the interactions between ionospheric science and geomagnetism. The present-day observatory scene was described in terms of the information that can be derived from the almost 40 year series of data from Hartland magnetic observatory; of the methods used to process data from the three UK magnetic observatories, which nowadays are operated automatically and remotely; and (a look into the future) of a new project, INTERMAGNET, which aims to make available, in near real time, data from the world-wide network of magnetic observatories.

  5. A Case of Racial Discrimination: Azeglio Bemporad, Astronomer Poet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mangano, A.

    2015-04-01

    The stories from our archives do not only speak of scientific progress, tools, and data, but also of the events of the astronomers as men, and how their work is intertwined in their private, political, and social life. In the case of Azeglio Bemporad, who worked at Catania Astrophysical Observatory until 1938, year of purge against Jews in Italy, the painful history of Fascism fully enters our scientific institutions, changing the life of a person who had never dealt with politics.

  6. Requirements for a Future Astronomical Data Analysis Environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grosbl, P.; Banse, K.; Tody, D.; Cotton, W.; Cornwell, T. J.; Ponz, D.; Ignatius, J.; Linde, P.; van der Hulst, T.; Burwitz, V.; Giaretta, D.; Pasian, F.; Garilli, B.; Pence, W.; Shaw, D.

    2005-12-01

    Most of the systems currently used to analyze astronomical data were designed and implemented more than a decade ago. Although they still are very useful for analysis, one often would like a better interface to newer concepts like archives, Virtual Observatories and GRID. Further, incompatibilities between most of the current systems with respect to control language and semantics make it cumbersome to mix applications from different origins. An OPTICON Network, funded by the Sixth Framework Programme of the European Commission, started this year to discuss high-level needs for an astronomical data analysis environment which could provide a flexible access to both legacy applications and new astronomical resources. The main objective of the Network is to establish widely accepted requirements and basic design recommendations for such an environment. The hope is that this effort will help other projects, which consider to implement such systems, in collaborating and achieving a common environment.

  7. Planetariums, The Great Messengers of the Astronomical Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Acker, A.

    2005-12-01

    A close partnership between planetariums and astronomers allows the public better access to the results of the astronomical research through high quality audiovisual tools. The French-speaking planetariums have shared their areas of expertise, their different approaches and techniques and their resources since 1984. They created the Association of French Language Planetariums (APLF) in 1989, with a head office located at the Observatory/University of Strasbourg in collaboration with teachers and astronomers. The French Planetariums welcome ~1,300,000 visitors per year, 65 % of which come from schools. APLF comprises about thirty fixed structures, 70 small and portable planetariums, and ten French-speaking Planetariums: Brussels and Genk (Belgium), Brescia (Italy), Lafayette (the USA), Lucerne (Swiss), Montreal (Canada), Tunis. APLF wish to develop planetariums in France and beyond in order to diffuse scientific knowledge towards a large audience and especially towards young people.

  8. Young Galaxy's Magnetism Surprises Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2008-10-01

    Astronomers have made the first direct measurement of the magnetic field in a young, distant galaxy, and the result is a big surprise. Looking at a faraway protogalaxy seen as it was 6.5 billion years ago, the scientists measured a magnetic field at least 10 times stronger than that of our own Milky Way. They had expected just the opposite. The GBT Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope CREDIT: NRAO/AUI/NSF The scientists made the discovery using the National Science Foundation's ultra-sensitive Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT) in West Virginia. "This new measurement indicates that magnetic fields may play a more important role in the formation and evolution of galaxies than we have realized," said Arthur Wolfe, of the University of California-San Diego (UCSD). At its great distance, the protogalaxy is seen as it was when the Universe was about half its current age. According to the leading theory, cosmic magnetic fields are generated by the dynamos of rotating galaxies -- a process that would produce stronger fields with the passage of time. In this scenario, the magnetic fields should be weaker in the earlier Universe, not stronger. The new, direct magnetic-field measurement comes on the heels of a July report by Swiss and American astronomers who made indirect measurements that also implied strong magnetic fields in the early Universe. "Our results present a challenge to the dynamo model, but they do not rule it out," Wolfe said. There are other possible explanations for the strong magnetic field seen in the one protogalaxy Wolfe's team studied. "We may be seeing the field close to the central region of a massive galaxy, and we know such fields are stronger toward the centers of nearby galaxies. Also, the field we see may have been amplified by a shock wave caused by the collision of two galaxies," he said. The protogalaxy studied with the GBT, called DLA-3C286, consists of gas with little or no star formation occurring in it. The astronomers suspect that

  9. The Lowell Observatory Predoctoral Scholar Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Belle, Gerard; Prato, Lisa A.

    2016-01-01

    Lowell Observatory is pleased to solicit applications for our Predoctoral Scholar Fellowship Program. Now beginning its eighth year, this program is designed to provide unique research opportunities to graduate students in good standing, currently enrolled at Ph.D. granting institutions. Lowell staff research spans a wide range of topics, from astronomical instrumentation, to icy bodies in our solar system, exoplanet science, stellar populations, star formation, and dwarf galaxies. The Observatory's new 4.3 meter Discovery Channel Telescope has successfully begun science operations and we anticipate the commissioning of new instruments in 2015, making this a particularly exciting time in our history. Student research is expected to lead to a thesis dissertation appropriate for graduation at the doctoral level at the student's home institution. The Observatory provides competitive compensation and full benefits to student scholars. For more information, see http://www2.lowell.edu/rsch/predoc.php and links therein. Applications for Fall 2016 are due by May 1, 2016.

  10. Undergraduate Astronomy Instruction With an Automated Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fanelli, Michael; Littler, Christopher; Weathers, Duncan

    2001-10-01

    The University of North Texas currently enrolls 2400 students per academic year in survey astronomy classes. As one element in our laboratory program, we are developing an automated observatory for use by these students. The UNT Monroe Observatory is located at a dark site approximately 45 miles northwest of Denton (80 miles from the Dallas / Fort Worth Metroplex). We plan 2-4 telescopes in the 36-40 cm range, outfitted with CCD cameras, to be remotely operated from the University in Denton. This automated observatory will permit students to conduct individualized observational astronomy experiments in a manner similar to those employed in astronomical research. These imaging experiments will be the centerpiece of the students' laboratory experience. Our goal is to provide an exemplary laboratory experience for students attempting to meet a natural science curriculum requirement. Currently, the equipment has been procured and the observing site prepared. We anticipate first use during the 2002-2003 academic year.

  11. Instrument Remote Control via the Astronomical Instrument Markup Language

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sall, Ken; Ames, Troy; Warsaw, Craig; Koons, Lisa; Shafer, Richard

    1998-01-01

    The Instrument Remote Control (IRC) project ongoing at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center's (GSFC) Information Systems Center (ISC) supports NASA's mission by defining an adaptive intranet-based framework that provides robust interactive and distributed control and monitoring of remote instruments. An astronomical IRC architecture that combines the platform-independent processing capabilities of Java with the power of Extensible Markup Language (XML) to express hierarchical data in an equally platform-independent, as well as human readable manner, has been developed. This architecture is implemented using a variety of XML support tools and Application Programming Interfaces (API) written in Java. IRC will enable trusted astronomers from around the world to easily access infrared instruments (e.g., telescopes, cameras, and spectrometers) located in remote, inhospitable environments, such as the South Pole, a high Chilean mountaintop, or an airborne observatory aboard a Boeing 747. Using IRC's frameworks, an astronomer or other scientist can easily define the type of onboard instrument, control the instrument remotely, and return monitoring data all through the intranet. The Astronomical Instrument Markup Language (AIML) is the first implementation of the more general Instrument Markup Language (IML). The key aspects of our approach to instrument description and control applies to many domains, from medical instruments to machine assembly lines. The concepts behind AIML apply equally well to the description and control of instruments in general. IRC enables us to apply our techniques to several instruments, preferably from different observatories.

  12. Observatories of Sawai Jai Singh II

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson-Roehr, Susan N.

    Sawai Jai Singh II, Maharaja of Amber and Jaipur, constructed five observatories in the second quarter of the eighteenth century in the north Indian cities of Shahjahanabad (Delhi), Jaipur, Ujjain, Mathura, and Varanasi. Believing the accuracy of his naked-eye observations would improve with larger, more stable instruments, Jai Singh reengineered common brass instruments using stone construction methods. His applied ingenuity led to the invention of several outsize masonry instruments, the majority of which were used to determine the coordinates of celestial objects with reference to the local horizon. During Jai Singh's lifetime, the observatories were used to make observations in order to update existing ephemerides such as the Zīj-i Ulugh Begī. Jai Singh established communications with European astronomers through a number of Jesuits living and working in India. In addition to dispatching ambassadorial parties to Portugal, he invited French and Bavarian Jesuits to visit and make use of the observatories in Shahjahanabad and Jaipur. The observatories were abandoned after Jai Singh's death in 1743 CE. The Mathura observatory was disassembled completely before 1857. The instruments at the remaining observatories were restored extensively during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

  13. Telescopes in Education: the Little Thompson Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schweitzer, A.; Vanlew, K.; Melsheimer, T.; Melsheimer, L.; Rideout, C.; Patterson, T.

    1997-12-01

    A second observatory of the Telescopes in Education (TIE) project is in the planning stages, with hopes to be in use by fall 1998. The Little Thompson Observatory will be located adjacent to Berthoud High School in northern Colorado. TIE has offered the observatory a Tinsley 18" Cassegrain telescope on a 10-year loan. Local schools and youth organizations will have prioritized access to the telescope until midnight; after that, the telescope will be open to world-wide use by schools via the Internet. The first TIE observatory is a 24" telescope on Mt. Wilson, already booked through July 1998. That telescope has been in use every clear night for the past four years by up to 50 schools per month. Students remotely control the telescope over the Internet, and then receive the images on their local computers. The estimated cost of the Little Thompson Observatory is roughly \\170,000. However, donations of labor and materials have reduced the final price tag closer to \\40,000. Habitat for Humanity is organized to construct the dome, classrooms, and other facilities. Tom and Linda Melsheimer, who developed the remote telescope control system for the University of Denver's Mount Evans Observatory, are donating a similar control system. The formally-trained, all-volunteer staff will be comprised of local residents, teachers and amateur astronomers. Utilities and Internet access will be provided by the Thompson School District.

  14. On astronomical drawing [1846

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smyth, Charles Piazzi

    Reprinted from the Memoirs of the Royal Astronomical Society 15, 1846, pp. 71-82. With annotations and illustrations added by Klaus Hentschel. The activities of the Astronomer Royal for Scotland, Charles Piazzi Smyth (1819-1900), include the triangulation of South African districts, landscape painting, day-to-day or tourist sketching, the engraving and lithographing of prominent architectural sites, the documentary photography of the Egyptian pyramids or the Tenerife Dragon tree, and `instant photographs' of the clouds above his retirement home in Clova, Ripon. His colorful records of the aurora polaris, and solar and terrestrial spectra all profited from his trained eye and his subtle mastery of the pen and the brush. As his paper on astronomical drawing, which we chose to reproduce in this volume, amply demonstrates, he was conversant in most of the print technology repertoire that the 19th century had to offer, and carefully selected the one most appropriate to each sujet. For instance, he chose mezzotint for the plates illustrating Maclear's observations of Halley's comet in 1835/36, so as to achieve a ``rich profundity of shadows, the deep obscurity of which is admirably adapted to reproduce those fine effects of chiaroscuro frequently found in works where the quantity of dark greatly predominates.'' The same expertise with which he tried to emulate Rembrandt's chiaroscuro effects he applied to assessing William and John Herschel's illustrations of nebulae, which appeared in print between 1811 and 1834. William Herschel's positive engraving, made partly by stippling and partly by a coarse mezzotint, receives sharp admonishment because of the visible ruled crossed lines in the background and the fact that ``the objects, which are also generally too light, [have] a much better definition than they really possess.'' On the other hand, John Herschel's illustration of nebulae and star clusters, given in negative, ``in which the lights are the darkest part of the

  15. Astronomical Fourier spectrometer.

    PubMed

    Connes, P; Michel, G

    1975-09-01

    A high resolution near ir Fourier spectrometer with the same general design as previously described laboratory instruments has been built for astronomical observations at a coudé focus. Present spectral range is 0.8-3.5 microm with PbS and Ge detectors and maximum path difference 1 m. The servo system can accommodate various recording modes: stepping or continuous scan, path difference modulation, sky chopping. A real time computer is incorporated into the system, which has been set up at the Hale 500-cm telescope on Mount Palomar. Samples of the results are given.

  16. Astronomical Instruments in India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sarma, Sreeramula Rajeswara

    The earliest astronomical instruments used in India were the gnomon and the water clock. In the early seventh century, Brahmagupta described ten types of instruments, which were adopted by all subsequent writers with minor modifications. Contact with Islamic astronomy in the second millennium AD led to a radical change. Sanskrit texts began to lay emphasis on the importance of observational instruments. Exclusive texts on instruments were composed. Islamic instruments like the astrolabe were adopted and some new types of instruments were developed. Production and use of these traditional instruments continued, along with the cultivation of traditional astronomy, up to the end of the nineteenth century.

  17. Odessa Observatory as a Cultural and Scientific Educational Center on the Black Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karetnikov, V. G.; Dorokhova, T. N.

    2007-10-01

    Odessa is a large port city on the Black Sea. Historically, transport, economy and business problems call forth the necessity of a major astronomical center in the city. In 2006 the Astronomical Observatory of Odessa National University celebrates its 135th Anniversary. Some interesting astronomical buildings and instruments of the 19th and 20th centuries, and the extensive scientific investigations which are reflected in numerous publications make the Observatory not only a scientific and educational establishment but also an historical and cultural center.

  18. The Selection and Protection of Optical Astronomical Observing Sites in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wenjing, Jin; Bai, Jinming; Yao, Yongqiang

    2015-03-01

    Before 1950 there are two observatories, Shanghai and Purple Mountain Astronomical Observatories (SHAO and PMO), and two observing stations, Qingdao and Kunming stations in China. With the requirements of astronomical research, two observatories, Beijing and Shaanxi Astronomical Observatories (BAO and SXAO) and two artificial satellite stations, Urumqi and Changchun, were established about 1960. Based on the current management, now there are 4 observatories, SHAO, PMO, NAOC(National Astronomical Observatories), which was grouped from BAO, YNAO and 2 others, as well as XAO (Xinjiang Astronomical Observatory). The optical 1-2 m class telescopes are being operated at former four observatories. SXAO is changed as National Time Service Center. Because of city expansion as well as the traveling and economic developments, these observatories are suffered severe light pollution. For example, Zo Ce is located at the suburb of Shanghai city. A 40 cm double astrograph was installed in 1900 and a 1.56 m optical reflector have been operated since November 1987. In 1994 the seeing is better than 1 and the night sky brightness in V is about 19 mag/arcsec 2, stars fainter than 20 mag with CCD are visibles. In 2007 a large playground was built in Zô Cè area. The light pollution is severe gradually. The night sky brightness has been increased to 15.8 mag/arcsec 2. The other observatories have similar situation. New site surveys and found new stations to solve the problem. Except the solar and radio stations of each Astronomical Observatory, now there are 3 optical observing sites at PMO (Hong-He, Xu-Yi and Yaoan), 2 at SHAO (Zô Cè and Tian Huang Ping) and 2 at YNAO (Kunming and Gao-Mei-Gu) as well as 1 optical observing site at BAO (Xing-Long). The best observing site is Gao-Mei-Gu, which is selected as the optical observing site of YNAO and where atmospheric turbulence distribution is 0.11 near ground with heights from 6.5m to 2.7m during night. Sky brightness in B and V band

  19. Astronomy and astrophysics communication in the UCM Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Crespo-Chacón, I.; de Castro, E.; Díaz, C.; Gallego, J.; Gálvez, M. C.; Hernán-Obispo, M.; López-Santiago, J.; Montes, D.; Pascual, S.; Verdet, A.; Villar, V.; Zamorano, J.

    We present a summary of the last activities of science communication that have taken place in the Observatorio de la Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM Observatory) on the occasion of the Third Science Week of the Comunidad Autónoma de Madrid (3-16 November 2003), including guided tours through the observatory facilities, solar observations, and several talks. Moreover the current telescopes, instruments and tools of the UCM Observatory have allowed us to organize other communicating activities such as the live observation, together with its internet broadcast, of total lunar eclipses and other exceptional astronomical events as the Venus transit that took place in 8 June 2004.

  20. The International Virtual Observatory: Summary of the first decade

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malkov, O. Yu.

    2012-01-01

    International Virtual Observatory is a collection of integrated astronomical data archives and software tools that utilize computer networks to create an environment in which research can be conducted. Several countries have initiated national virtual observatory programs that will combine existing databases from ground-based and space-born observatories and make them easily accessible to researchers. As a result, data from all the world's major observatories will be available to all users and to the public. This is significant not only because of the immense volume of astronomical data but also because the data on stars and galaxies have been compiled from observations in a variety of wavelengths: optical, radio, infrared, gamma ray, X-ray and more. Each wavelength can provide different information about a celestial event or object, but also requires a special expertise to interpret. In a virtual observatory environment, all of this data is integrated so that it can be synthesized and used in a given study. The International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA) represents 20 national and international projects working in coordination to realize the essential technologies and interoperability standards necessary to create a new research infrastructure. Russian Virtual Observatory is one of the founders and important members of the IVOA. The International Virtual Observatory project was launched about ten years ago, and its major achievements in science and technology in recent years are discussed in this paper. Standards for accessing large astronomical data sets were developed. Such data sets can accommodate the full range of wavelengths and observational techniques for all types of astronomical data: catalogues, images, spectra and time series. The described standards include standards for metadata, data formats, query language, etc. Services for the federation of massive, distributed data sets, regardless of the wavelength, resolution and type of data were

  1. Remote observatory access via the Advanced Communications Technology Satellite

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Horan, Stephen; Anderson, Kurt; Georghiou, Georghios

    1992-01-01

    An investigation of the potential for using the ACTS to provide the data distribution network for a distributed set of users of an astronomical observatory has been conducted. The investigation consisted of gathering the data and interface standards for the ACTS network and the observatory instrumentation and telecommunications devices. A simulation based on COMNET was then developed to test data transport configurations for real-time suitability. The investigation showed that the ACTS network should support the real-time requirements and allow for growth in the observatory needs for data transport.

  2. The Virtual Observatory in Italy: status and prospect.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smareglia, R.; Pasian, F.; Becciani, U.; Longo, G.; Prete Martinez, A.; Volpicelli, A.

    With the increase of the potentiality of the astronomical research system through the use of new and expensive tools on multi-wavelength, both in the space and ground structures and through the availability of simulated data too, scientists are now fully aware that this amount of investments require to maximize the exploitation of such tools and their scientific return. A typical theme to face in this attempt is the need to preserve the patrimony inherent in the acquired data. The data must be acquired, described, processed and preserved in order to make possible their reuse from the future generations of researchers and scientific programs whose purposes can be different from those that have originally pushed the acquisition of such data. The Virtual Observatory (VO) is the middleware that will allow the astronomers of the XXI century to fully perceive the return of their investments through the setup of long-term data archives. The VO, therefore, becomes a key element of every new astronomical facility . The first Italian step toward this philosophy is the creation of the "Italian Center for the Astronomical Archive" (IA2). IA2 is the point of contact for the Italian astronomic communities managing catalogs and astronomic archives, so that related data are federated and usable from the national and international astronomers in the VO philosophy. INAF is also involved in the Euro-VO project; it will make available to the astronomical community tools, developed in Italy, that guarantee the interoperability of data like visualization and data mining tools.

  3. XXXVI Polish Astronomical Society Meeting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Różańska, Agata; Bejger, Michał

    2014-12-01

    XXXVI meeting of Polish Astronomical Society was held in Warsaw on Sept. 11-14, 2013. The conference brought together 150 astronomers working in different institutes in Poland and abroad. The highlight of the Congress was the first awarding of the Paczynski's Medal. The first laureate of the Medal is Professor Martin Rees from University of Cambridge. Medal was given by the President of the Polish Astronomical Society prof. Bozena Czerny.

  4. Centre for Astronomical Data and Software at Indian Institute of Astrophysics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murthy, J.

    2006-11-01

    jmurthy61@rediffmail.com jmurthy@yahoo.com We propose to set up a Centre for Astronomical Data and Software (CADS) at the CREST campus of IIA. A Data Centre is many things. At the most basic level, it is simply a place to warehouse astronomical data but this has led in the past to a sterile environment which may not serve the user. We plan, on the model of the Virtual Observatory, to set up a living centre which will proactively serve the needs of the IIA and, more generally, the Indian astronomical community. IIA has always been a source of data - from Kodaikanal to the Vainu Bappu Observatory (Kavalur) and the Indian Astronomical Observatory (Hanle) - and this will continue into the future with major missions such as TAUVEX or UVIT and with the digitization of the Kodaikanal solar observations. IIA astronomers are further involved with many other missions (SOHO, GALEX, SDSS ...) all with large amounts of data. Our group will serve as a single node for all data related activities in the Institute where other groups or individual scientists will be able to come for help in, primarily, software development. Science will continue to be driven by the scientist but accessory tools and techniques will be developed by CADS. As we develop, we hope to become part of the global Virtual Observatory community.

  5. Conceiving and Marketing NASA's Great Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harwit, Martin

    2009-01-01

    In late 1984, Dr. Charles P. (Charlie) Pellerin Jr., director of the Astrophysics Division of NASA's Office of Space Science and Applications (OSSA) faced a dilemma. Congress and the White House had given approval to work that would lead to the launch of the Gamma Ray Observatory and the Hubble Space Telescope, but competing segments of the astronomical community were clamoring for two additional missions, the Space Infrared Telescope Facility (SIRTF) and the Advanced X-ray Astrophysics Facility (AXAF). Pellerin knew that Congress would not countenance a request for another costly astronomical space observatory so soon after approving GRO and HST. He also foresaw that if he arbitrarily assigned priority to either AXAF or SIRTF he would split the astronomical community. The losing faction would be up on Capitol Hill, lobbying Congress to reverse the decision; and Congress would do what it always does with split communities --- nothing. Pellerin called a meeting of leading astrophysicists to see how a persuasive argument could be made for both these new observatories and to market them as vital to a first comprehensive inventory of the universe conducted across all wavelength ranges. The group provided Pellerin a rotating membership of astrophysicists, who could debate and resolve issues so that decisions he reached would have solid community support. It also helped him to market his ideas in Congress. Ultimately, the concept of the Great Observatories came to be accepted; but its implementation faced myriad difficulties. False starts, political alliances that never worked out, and dramatic changes of direction necessitated by the Challenger disaster of early 1986 continually kept progress off balance. My paper follows these twists and turns from late 1984 to the announcement, on February 1, 1988, that President Reagan's FY89 budget proposal to Congress had designated AXAF for a new start.

  6. The Virtual Observatory: Retrospective and Prospectus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanisch, R. J.

    2010-12-01

    At the ADASS XV in San Lorenzo de El Escorial, Spain, in October 2005, I gave an overview of the accomplishments of the Virtual Observatory initiatives and discussed the imminent transition from development to operations. That transition remains on the horizon for the US Virtual Observatory, and VO projects worldwide have encountered various programmatic challenges. The successes of the Virtual Observatory are many, but thus far are primarily of a technical nature. We have developed a data discovery and data access infrastructure that has been taken up by data centers and observatories around the world. We have web-based interfaces, downloadable toolkits and applications, a security and restricted access capability, standard vocabularies, a sophisticated messaging and alert system for transient events, and the ability for applications to exchange messages and work together seamlessly. This has been accomplished through a strong collaboration between astronomers and information technology specialists. We have been less successful engaging the astronomical researcher. Relatively few papers have been published based on VO-enabled research, and many astronomers remain unfamiliar with the capabilities of the VO despite active training and tutorial programs hosted by several of the major VO projects. As we (finally!) enter the operational phase of the VO, we need to focus on areas that have contributed to the limited take-up of the VO amongst active scientists, such as ease of use, reliability, and consistency. We need to routinely test VO services for aliveness and adherence to standards, working with data providers to fix errors and otherwise removing non-compliant services from those seen by end-users. Technical developments will need to be motivated and prioritized based on scientific utility. We need to continue to embrace new technology and employ it in a context that focuses on research productivity.

  7. The Pulkovo Observatory in the last 50 years through the eyes of its Learned Secretary Yu. I. Vitinsky.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhukov, V. Yu.; Soboleva, T. V.

    A solar physicist, a Pulkovo astronomer, Yury Ivanovich Vitinsky (1926-2003) was the author of 210 scientific papers known in both Russia and abroad. He worked in the Observatory for about half a century (1953-2002) and held the office of the Learned Secretary of the Russian Academy of Sciences Main Astronomical Observatory for 35 years (1965-2000). In the last years of his life, Vitinsky brought his recollections that he titled "My Pulkovo" to the Main Astronomical Observatory Archive. His memoirs narrate about problems of the astronomical science, staff members and deeds of Pulkovo, things he thought of an events he was through. This is the half-a-century history of the Pulkovo Observatory in biographies of persons. The writer of the Recollections mentions the names of fifty persons most of whom are the Main Astronomical Observatory staff members that he worked with side by side. The memoirs provide accurate descriptions that are brief yet rather capacious of the author's Pulkovo colleagues, as well as other astronomers. The language of Vitinsky's recollection is good and clear. His memoirs contain moderate balanced views of people and events and provide objective and trustworthy data. "My Pulkovo" is an indispensable biographical source for the historian of the astronomical science, the Pulkovo Observatory and its scholarly staff members of the most recent decades. It is also just an interesting human document. In 2006, Yury Ivanovich would have been eighty.

  8. Major Conference about Astronomical Technology in Munich

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2000-03-01

    Press Conference on Monday, March 27, 2000 Which are the latest astronomical discoveries made with the new 8-10 metre class astronomical telescopes? Will it be possible to construct even more powerful instruments on the ground and in space to explore the near and distant Universe at all wavelengths from gamma-rays to radio waves? Which research areas in this dynamical science are likely to achieve break-throughs with emerging new technologies? These are some of the central themes that will be discussed by more than 600 specialists from all over the world at an international conference in Munich (Germany), "Astronomical Telescopes and Instruments 2000" , beginning on Monday, March 27, 2000. During five days, the modern architecture of the new International Congress Center in the Bavarian capital will be the scene of lively exchanges about recent progress at the world's top-class astronomical research facilities and the presentation of inspired new ideas about future technological opportunities. The conference will be accompanied by numerous on-site exhibition stands by the major industries and research organisations in this wide field. This meeting is the latest in a series, organised every second year, alternatively in the USA and Europe by the International Society for Optical Engineering (SPIE) , this year with the European Southern Observatory (ESO) as co-sponsor and host institution. The conference will be opened in the morning of March 27 by the Bavarian Minister of Science, Research and Arts, Hans Zehetmair . His address will be followed by keynote speeches by Massimo Tarenghi (European Southern Observatory), James B. Breckenridge (National Science Foundation, USA), Harvey Butcher (Netherlands Foundation for Research in Astronomy) and Albrecht Ruediger (Max Planck Institut für Quantenoptik, Germany). The conference is subtitled "Power Telescopes and Instrumentation into the New Millennium" and will be attended by leading scientists and engineers from all

  9. Professional Ethics for Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marvel, K. B.

    2005-05-01

    There is a growing recognition that professional ethics is an important topic for all professional scientists, especially physical scientists. Situations at the National Laboratories have dramatically proven this point. Professional ethics is usually only considered important for the health sciences and the legal and medical professions. However, certain aspects of the day to day work of professional astronomers can be impacted by ethical issues. Examples include refereeing scientific papers, serving on grant panels or telescope allocation committees, submitting grant proposals, providing proper references in publications, proposals or talks and even writing recommendation letters for job candidates or serving on search committees. This session will feature several speakers on a variety of topics and provide time for questions and answers from the audience. Confirmed speakers include: Kate Kirby, Director Institute for Theoretical Atomic and Molecular Physics - Professional Ethics in the Physical Sciences: An Overview Rob Kennicutt, Astrophysical Journal Editor - Ethical Issues for Publishing Astronomers Peggy Fischer, Office of the NSF Inspector General - Professional Ethics from the NSF Inspector General's Point of View

  10. Grigor Narekatsi's astronomical insights

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poghosyan, Samvel

    2015-07-01

    What stand out in the solid system of Gr. Narekatsi's naturalistic views are his astronomical insights on the material nature of light, its high speed and the Sun being composed of "material air". Especially surprising and fascinating are his views on stars and their clusters. What astronomers, including great Armenian academician V. Ambartsumian (scattering of stellar associations), would understand and prove with much difficulty thousand years later, Narekatsi predicted in the 10th century: "Stars appear and disappear untimely", "You who gather and scatter the speechless constellations, like a flock of sheep". Gr. Narekatsti's reformative views were manifested in all the spheres of the 10th century social life; he is a reformer of church life, great language constructor, innovator in literature and music, freethinker in philosophy and science. His ideology is the reflection of the 10th century Armenian Renaissance. During the 9th-10th centuries, great masses of Armenians, forced to migrate to the Balkans, took with them and spread reformative ideas. The forefather of the western science, which originated in the period of Reformation, is considered to be the great philosopher Nicholas of Cusa. The study of Gr. Narekatsti's logic and naturalistic views enables us to claim that Gr. Narekatsti is the great grandfather of European science.

  11. Integral Programme of Basic Astronomic Literacy Development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tignanelli, H.

    2009-05-01

    We discuss the development and optimization of an ongoing educational project involving the whole population of the province of San Luis, Argentina. The core of the project includes activities and resources that capture formal curricular aspects directed towards all levels of teaching. The educational activities related to this project have been benefited by the acquisition of two planetariums made in Argentina, a MEADE 16'' telescope to be operated by remote control from any school-room in San Luis, and a naked-eye observatory with more than 30 pre-telescopic instruments, and other didactic tools specially designed for the teaching of Astronomy. Furthermore, an Internet site to upload all the astronomical activities suggested that has been developed along with a number of didactic and general-interest publications.

  12. Commission 5: Documentation and Astronomical Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Genova, Françoise; Norris, Raymond P.; Dluzhnevskaya, Olga B.; Bessel, Michael S.; Jenker, H.; Malkov, Oleg Yu.; Murtagh, Fionn; Nakajima, Koichi; Ochsenbein, François; Pence, William D.; Schmitz, Marion; Wielen, Roland; Zhao, Yong Heng

    2007-12-01

    Commission 5 has been very active during the IAU XXVI General Assembly in Prague: the Commission, its Working Groups and its Task Force held business meetings. In addition, Commission 5 sponsored two Special Sessions: Special Session 3 on The Virtual Observatory in Action: New Science, New Technology, and Next Generation Facilities which was held for three days 17 22 August, and Special Session 6 on Astronomical Data Management, which was held on 22 August. Commission 5 also participated in the organisation of Joint Discussion 16 on Nomenclature, Precession and New Models in Fundamental Astronomy, which was held 22-23 August. The General Assembly and Commission 5 web sites provides links to detailed information about all these meetings.

  13. Lyman Spitzer: Astronomer, Physicist, Engineer, and Mountaineer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Morton, D. C.

    2006-12-01

    NASA's naming of the Spitzer Space Telescope after Lyman Spitzer was a most appropriate choice, recognizing an outstanding scientist who also contributed extensively to space astronomy. As an astronomer he was a leading authority in the physics of both the interstellar medium and stellar dynamics, wrote textbooks for both fields, and guided many research students. As a physicist he conceived the Stellarator for magnetic confinement, managed a laboratory for controlled fusion, and wrote a textbook on plasma physics. As an engineer he led the development of the payload for the successful Copernicus satellite, which fulfilled his 1946 proposal for an extraterrestrial observatory. His mountaineering included first ascents on Baffin Island and in the Canadian Rockies as well as the summit of the challenging Mt Waddington in the Coast Range.

  14. Combined ultraviolet studies of astronomical source

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dupress, A. K.; Baliunas, S. L.; Blair, W. P.; Hartmann, L. W.; Huchra, J. P.; Raymond, J. C.; Smith, G. H.; Soderblom, D. R.

    1985-01-01

    As part of its Ultraviolet Studies of Astronomical Sources the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory for the period 1 Feb. 1985 to 31 July 1985 observed the following: the Cygnus Loop; oxygen-rich supernova remnants in 1E0102-72; the Large Magellanic Cloud supernova remnants; P Cygni profiles in dwarf novae; soft X-ray photoionization of interstellar gas; spectral variations in AM Her stars; the mass of Feige 24; atmospheric inhomogeneities in Lambda Andromedae and FF Aquarii; photometric and spectroscopic observation of Capella; Alpha Orionis; metal deficient giant stars; M 67 giants; high-velocity winds from giant stars; accretion disk parameters in cataclysmic variables; chromospheric emission of late-type dwarfs in visual binaries; chromospheres and transient regions of stars in the Ursa Major group; and low-metallicity blue galaxies.

  15. A Green Robotic Observatory for Astronomy Education

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reddy, Vishnu; Archer, K.

    2008-09-01

    With the development of robotic telescopes and stable remote observing software, it is currently possible for a small institution to have an affordable astronomical facility for astronomy education. However, a faculty member has to deal with the light pollution (observatory location on campus), its nightly operations and regular maintenance apart from his day time teaching and research responsibilities. While building an observatory at a remote location is a solution, the cost of constructing and operating such a facility, not to mention the environmental impact, are beyond the reach of most institutions. In an effort to resolve these issues we have developed a robotic remote observatory that can be operated via the internet from anywhere in the world, has a zero operating carbon footprint and minimum impact on the local environment. The prototype observatory is a clam-shell design that houses an 8-inch telescope with a SBIG ST-10 CCD detector. The brain of the observatory is a low draw 12-volt harsh duty computer that runs the dome, telescope, CCD camera, focuser, and weather monitoring. All equipment runs of a 12-volt AGM-style battery that has low lead content and hence more environmental-friendly to dispose. The total power of 12-14 amp/hrs is generated from a set of solar panels that are large enough to maintain a full battery charge for several cloudy days. This completely eliminates the need for a local power grid for operations. Internet access is accomplished via a high-speed cell phone broadband connection or satellite link eliminating the need for a phone network. An independent observatory monitoring system interfaces with the observatory computer during operation. The observatory converts to a trailer for transportation to the site and is converted to a semi-permanent building without wheels and towing equipment. This ensures minimal disturbance to local environment.

  16. The Most Popular Astronomical Web Server in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cui, Chenzhou; Zhao, Yongheng

    Affected by the consistent depressibility of IT economy free homepage space is becoming less and less. It is more and more difficult to construct websites for amateur astronomers who do not have ability to pay for commercial space. In last May with the support of Chinese National Astronomical Observatory and Large Sky Area Multi-Object Fiber Spectroscopic Telescope project we setup a special web server (amateur.lamost.org) to provide free huge stable and no-advertisement homepage space to Chinese amateur astronomers and non-professional organizations. After only one year there has been more than 80 websites hosted on the server. More than 10000 visitors from nearly 40 countries visit the server and the amount of data downloaded by them exceeds 4 Giga-Bytes per day. The server has become the most popular amateur astronomical web server in China. It stores the most abundant Chinese amateur astronomical resources. Because of the extremely success our service has been drawing tremendous attentions from related institutions. Recently Chinese National Natural Science Foundation shows great interest to support the service. In the paper the emergence of the thought construction of the server and its present utilization and our future plan are introduced

  17. Wide-field plate archives stored in the Ukrainian observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsvetkova, K. P.; Tsvetkov, M. K.; Sergeeva, T. P.; Sergeev, A. V.

    2009-01-01

    The latest version of the Wide-Field Plate Database Catalogue of Wide-Field Plate Archives (April 2008) contains 43 archives stored at some Ukrainian observatories, namely, at the Main Astronomical Observatory of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine (Golosiiv, Kyiv), at the Crimean Astrophysical Observatory (Nauchnyi and Simeiz), at the Kyiv, L'viv, and Odesa University Observatories, and at the Mykolaiv Observatory. About 126 000 plates were obtained from 1898 to 2005 in the framework of the following observing programmes: Solar System Bodies Observations, Observations of Variable Stars, Investigations of the Emission Nebulae and Connected Stars, Spectral Classification of the Stars and Determination of the Stellar Absorption in the Direction of the Emission Nebulae, Photographic Survey of the Northern Sky (FON), Investigation of the Kinematics and Structure of the Main Meridian Section of our Galaxy (MEGA), Observation of Selected Reference Stars, Artificial Satellites Observations and other. At the moment the basic information on 12609 plates from 13 plate archives of the Main Astronomical Observatory and Crimean Astrophysical Observatory is included into the Wide-Field Plate Database Catalogue of Wide-Field Plate Indexes (Sofia, Bulgaria). The plate digitization is just started with flatbed scanners. Some illustrations of the potential of the Ukrainian plate archives for future re-usage are given and some compiled plate catalogues are presented on the basis of data from the Wide-Field Plate Database.

  18. Sylvester II Bukowiec Observatory: a "piece de theatre" for the inauguration day

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maksym, P. M.

    The 21st of May 2010 has been the day of inauguration of the Astronomical Observatory of Bukowiec "Pope Sylvester II". This observatory, a fixed station of the European network of asteroidal and lunar occultations for high resolution astrometry, is built in the territory of the school dedicated to Nicolas Copernicus, the most famous polish astronomer. This new observatory starts its activity in the international year of astronomy, which celebrates the 400th anniversary of the astronomical use of the telescope by Galileo Galilei. The polish astronomer Bohdan Paczy?ski is the fourth protagonist of the pièce théatrale written for the day of inauguration. Here is reported the text of this pièce, which was a powerful way to introduce people to the knowledge of Sylvester II, great scholar and teacher of the 10th century, who founded the first diocesis in Poland when he was Pope.

  19. Science and the Virtual Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dowler, Patrick; Schade, David

    The Canadian Virtual Observatory (CVO) is the cornerstone of a budding international partnership that delivers high quality scientific content and capabilities to the astronomical community. We have developed a uniform astronomical data model to characterise all types of observational data across the entire electromagnetic spectrum; this model enables users to find archive data based on the content and the quality without letting the technology get in the way. We have also developed general purpose source and object catalogs to store information extracted from the data using standard techniques and algorithms. These catalogs are explorable with a variety of scientific tools from a web interface for simple tasks to a programmatic interface for sophisticated analysis involving client and server side processing. Finally all of the data processing and analysis tasks we have executed or will execute are viewable via our processing catalog; links between object and source catalogs processing catalogs and observation catalogs allow users to examine the complete pedigree of every single derived value. Thus the entire system is open to peer review which is the cornerstone of science.

  20. Design and Implement of Astronomical Cloud Computing Environment In China-VO

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Changhua; Cui, Chenzhou; Mi, Linying; He, Boliang; Fan, Dongwei; Li, Shanshan; Yang, Sisi; Xu, Yunfei; Han, Jun; Chen, Junyi; Zhang, Hailong; Yu, Ce; Xiao, Jian; Wang, Chuanjun; Cao, Zihuang; Fan, Yufeng; Liu, Liang; Chen, Xiao; Song, Wenming; Du, Kangyu

    2017-06-01

    Astronomy cloud computing environment is a cyber-Infrastructure for Astronomy Research initiated by Chinese Virtual Observatory (China-VO) under funding support from NDRC (National Development and Reform commission) and CAS (Chinese Academy of Sciences). Based on virtualization technology, astronomy cloud computing environment was designed and implemented by China-VO team. It consists of five distributed nodes across the mainland of China. Astronomer can get compuitng and storage resource in this cloud computing environment. Through this environments, astronomer can easily search and analyze astronomical data collected by different telescopes and data centers , and avoid the large scale dataset transportation.

  1. ESO's First Observatory Celebrates 40th Anniversary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2009-03-01

    ESO's La Silla Observatory, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary, became the largest astronomical observatory of its time. It led Europe to the frontline of astronomical research, and is still one of the most scientifically productive in ground-based astronomy. ESO PR Photo 12a/09 La Silla Aerial View ESO PR Photo 12b/09 The ESO New Technology Telescope ESO PR Photo 12c/09 SEST on La Silla ESO PR Photo 12d/09 Looking for the best site ESO PR Video 12a/09 ESOcast 5 With about 300 refereed publications attributable to the work of the observatory per year, La Silla remains at the forefront of astronomy. It has led to an enormous number of scientific discoveries, including several "firsts". The HARPS spectrograph is the world's foremost exoplanet hunter. It detected the system around Gliese 581, which contains what may be the first known rocky planet in a habitable zone, outside the Solar System (ESO 22/07). Several telescopes at La Silla played a crucial role in discovering that the expansion of the Universe is accelerating (ESO 21/98) and in linking gamma-ray bursts -- the most energetic explosions in the Universe since the Big Bang - with the explosions of massive stars (ESO 15/98). Since 1987, the ESO La Silla Observatory has also played an important role in the study and follow-up of the nearest supernova, SN 1987A (ESO 08/07). "The La Silla Observatory continues to offer the astronomical community exceptional capabilities," says ESO Director General, Tim de Zeeuw. "It was ESO's first presence in Chile and as such, it triggered a very long and fruitful collaboration with this country and its scientific community." The La Silla Observatory is located at the edge of the Chilean Atacama Desert, one of the driest and loneliest areas of the world. Like other observatories in this geographical area, La Silla is located far from sources of polluting light and, as the Paranal Observatory that houses the Very Large Telescope, it has one of the darkest and clearest

  2. Astronomers Discover Spectacular Structure in Distant Galaxy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    1999-01-01

    Researchers using the National Science Foundation's Very Large Array (VLA) radio telescope have imaged a "spectacular and complex structure" in a galaxy 50 million light-years away. Their work both resolves a decades-old observational mystery and revises current theories about the origin of X-ray emission coming from gas surrounding the galaxy. The new VLA image is of the galaxy M87, which harbors at its core a supermassive black hole spewing out jets of subatomic particles at nearly the speed of light and also is the central galaxy of the Virgo Cluster of galaxies. The VLA image is the first to show detail of a larger structure that originally was detected by radio astronomers more than a half-century ago. Analysis of the new image indicates that astronomers will have to revise their ideas about the physics of what causes X-ray emission in the cores of many galaxy clusters. Frazer Owen of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) in Socorro, NM; Jean Eilek of the New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology (NM Tech) in Socorro, NM; and Namir Kassim of the Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, DC, announced their discovery at the American Astronomical Society's meeting today in Austin, TX. The new observations show two large, bubble-like lobes, more than 200,000 light-years across, that emit radio waves. These lobes, which are intricately detailed, apparently are powered by gravitational energy released from the black hole at the galaxy's center. "We think that material is flowing outward from the galaxy's core into these large, bright, radio-emitting 'bubbles,'" Owen said. The newly-discovered "bubbles" sit inside a region of the galaxy known to be emitting X-rays. Theorists have speculated that this X-ray emission arises when gas that originally was part of the Virgo Cluster of galaxies, cools and falls inwards onto M87 itself, at the center of the cluster. Such "cooling flows" are commonly thought to be responsible for strong X-ray emission in many

  3. Astronomical Site Testing Initiatives in Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buckley, David A. H.; Graham, Edward; Vaughan, Richard; Belay, Solomon; Biressa, Tolu

    2015-08-01

    Two astronomical site testing initiatives are beginning in both Kenya and Ethiopia, with the aim of selecting suitable locations in those countries for modest sized (1-2m) optical telescopes.The first project, in Kenya, has initially involved a desk-top study of ~30 years of low resolution (~80 km) meteorological satellite data from the European Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting (so called “ERA-reanalysis” data). This was later supplemented by ~2 years of higher resolution (~12 km) United Kingdom Met Office Limited Area Model for Africa (“Africa-LAM”) data, kindly made available by the British Atmospheric Data Centre (BADC).The analysis looked at cloud cover, aerosol distribution, integrated water vapour and wind conditions, On the basis of this study, we determined a number of regions in the north of Kenya, east of the Rift Valley, which show promise as potential observatory sites. We are now in the process of installing Automatic Weather Stations (AWS) at 3 selected sites (~2000-2700 m altitude) to begin monitoring meteorological conditions over the next few years. It is eventually hoped to supplement this study with instrumentation to allow the measurement of sky brightness, local cloud cover and seeing (e.g. with a DIMM system).A similar program of astronomical site testing is due to start in 2015 in the Lalibela region of northern Ethiopia, at three potential dark sky sites with expected relatively low cloud cover, ranging in altitude from ~3600 to 4100 m.

  4. Astronomical Surveys, Catalogs, Databases, and Archives

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mickaelian, A. M.

    2016-06-01

    All-sky and large-area astronomical surveys and their cataloged data over the whole range of electromagnetic spectrum are reviewed, from γ-ray to radio, such as Fermi-GLAST and INTEGRAL in γ-ray, ROSAT, XMM and Chandra in X-ray, GALEX in UV, SDSS and several POSS I and II based catalogues (APM, MAPS, USNO, GSC) in optical range, 2MASS in NIR, WISE and AKARI IRC in MIR, IRAS and AKARI FIS in FIR, NVSS and FIRST in radio and many others, as well as most important surveys giving optical images (DSS I and II, SDSS, etc.), proper motions (Tycho, USNO, Gaia), variability (GCVS, NSVS, ASAS, Catalina, Pan-STARRS) and spectroscopic data (FBS, SBS, Case, HQS, HES, SDSS, CALIFA, GAMA). Most important astronomical databases and archives are reviewed as well, including Wide-Field Plate DataBase (WFPDB), ESO, HEASARC, IRSA and MAST archives, CDS SIMBAD, VizieR and Aladin, NED and HyperLEDA extragalactic databases, ADS and astro-ph services. They are powerful sources for many-sided efficient research using Virtual Observatory tools. Using and analysis of Big Data accumulated in astronomy lead to many new discoveries.

  5. Preservation Challenges in North America: Recent Efforts by the American Astronomical Society

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schechner, Sara J.

    2012-09-01

    In January 2007 in Seattle, the Council of the American Astronomical Society established the Working Group for the Preservation of Astronomical Heritage (WGPAH) in response to a report from the society's Historical Astronomy Division (HAD). Twelve members of WGPAH are chosen on the basis of their professional qualifications relating to the preservation of sites, astronomical instruments, and historical documents. Two additional members represent the concerns of active research observatories. WGPAH is charged with developing and disseminating procedures, criteria and priorities for identifying, designating, and preserving astronomical structures, instruments, and records so that they will continue to be available for astronomical and historical research, for the teaching of astronomy, and for outreach to the general public. The Working Group may interact with other academic, international, or governmental organizations, as appropriate to advance the preservation of astronomical heritage. As a founding member of the Working Group, I will speak about both the AAS's initiatives and the leadership it has shown in affirming the value of historical astronomical data, glass plates, instruments, observatories, research papers, and editorial records. I will also describe the challenges faced in preserving these things in North America.

  6. The 1882 transit of Venus observed in Italian observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pigatto, Luisa; Zanini, Valeria

    2004-06-01

    The Italian Government did not provide financial support to Italian astronomers so that they could organize expeditions to places where the 1882 transit of Venus could be observed both at ingress and egress, so all observations had to be made from Italy, where the phenomenon was only partially visible. On December 6, the ingress should have been visible at about 2:30 p.m., in very unfavorable circumstances. Nonetheless, observations were made at the Observatories of Milan, Turin, Moncalieri, and Palermo; at the University Observatory and the Royal Navy Observatory in Genoa; at the Observatories of the Collegio Romano, Campidoglio and Gianicolo in Rome; and at the Capodimonte Observatory in Naples. Both spectroscopic and visual observations were made.

  7. Spectral photographic archives of observatories of Ukraine: digital versions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pakuliak, L.; Shlyapnikov, A.; Rosenbush, A.; Gorbunov, M.

    Photographic archives of Ukrainian observatories contain a large number of plates in collections of spectral observations. First attempts to digitize them and to make them available via VO formats and protocols of data transfer and processing were undertaken during last years. The involved observatories are Crimean Astrophysical Observatory (CrAO) and Main Astronomical observatory NAS of Ukraine (MAO NASU).The project of spectral archive digitizing is carried out within the framework of Ukrainian Virtual Observatory - UkrVO. The core of UkrVO is a Joint Digital Archive (JDA) of photographic and CCD observations. On-line databases of spectral photographic collections and their fitting for VO tools set are the further enhancement of the idea of JDA.

  8. Social Media Programs at the National Optical Astronomy Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sparks, Robert T.; Walker, Constance Elaine; Pompea, Stephen M.

    2015-08-01

    Observatories and other science research organizations want to share their research and activities with the public. The last several years, social media has become and increasingly important venue for communicating information about observatory activities, research and education and public outreach.The National Optical Astronomy Observatory (NOAO) uses a wide variety of social media to communicate with different audiences. NOAO is active on social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest. Our social media accounts include those for the National Optical Astronomy Observatory, Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory, Kitt Peak National Observatory and our dark skies conservation program Globe at Night.Our social media programs have a variety of audiences. NOAO uses social media to announce and promote NOAO sponsored meetings, observatory news and proposal deadlines to the professional astronomical community. Social media accounts are used to disseminate NOAO press releases, images from the observatory and other science using data from NOAO telescopes.Social media is important in our Education and Public Outreach programs (EPO). Globe at Night has very active facebook and twitter accounts encouraging people to become involved in preserving dark skies. Social media plays a role in recruiting teachers for professional development workshops such as Project Astro.NOAO produces monthly podcasts for the 365 Days of Astronomy podcast featuring interviews with NOAO astronomers. Each podcast highlights the science of an NOAO astronomer, an NOAO operated telescope or instrument, or an NOAO program. A separate series of podcasts is produced for NOAO’s Dark Skies Education programs. All the podcasts are archived at 365daysofastronomy.org.

  9. Invited review article: The Chandra X-ray Observatory.

    PubMed

    Schwartz, Daniel A

    2014-06-01

    The Chandra X-ray Observatory is an orbiting x-ray telescope facility. It is one of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's four "Great Observatories" that collectively have carried out astronomical observations covering the infrared through gamma-ray portion of the electromagnetic spectrum. Chandra is used by astronomers world-wide to acquire imaging and spectroscopic data over a nominal 0.1-10 keV (124-1.24 Å) range. We describe the three major parts of the observatory: the telescope, the spacecraft systems, and the science instruments. This article will emphasize features of the design and development driven by some of the experimental considerations unique to x-ray astronomy. We will update the on-orbit performance and present examples of the scientific highlights.

  10. American Astronomical Society Honors NRAO Scientist

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2005-01-01

    The American Astronomical Society (AAS) has awarded its prestigious George Van Biesbroeck Prize to Dr. Eric Greisen of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) in Socorro, New Mexico. The society cited Greisen's quarter-century as "principal architect and tireless custodian" of the Astronomical Image Processing System (AIPS), a massive software package used by astronomers around the world, as "an invaluable service to astronomy." Dr. Eric Greisen Dr. Eric Greisen CREDIT: NRAO/AUI/NSF (Click on image for larger version) The Van Biesbroeck Prize "honors a living individual for long-term extraordinary or unselfish service to astronomy, often beyond the requirements of his or her paid position." The AAS, with about 7,000 members, is the major organization of professional astronomers in North America. " The Very Large Array (VLA) is the most productive ground-based telescope in the history of astronomy, and most of the more than 10,000 observing projects on the VLA have depended upon the AIPS software to produce their scientific results," said Dr. James Ulvestad, NRAO's Director of New Mexico Operations. "This same software package also has been the principal tool for scientists using the Very Long Baseline Array and numerous other radio telescopes around the world," Ulvestad added. Greisen, who received a Ph.D in astronomy from the California Institute of Technology, joined the NRAO in 1972. He moved from the observatory's headquarters in Charlottesville, Virginia, to its Array Operations Center in Socorro in 2000. Greisen, who learned of the award in a telephone call from the AAS President, Dr. Robert Kirschner of Harvard University, said, "I'm pleased for the recognition of AIPS and also for the recognition of the contributions of radio astronomy to astronomy as a whole." He added that "it wasn't just me who did AIPS. There were many others." The AIPS software package grew out of the need for an efficient tool for producing images with the VLA, which was being

  11. Twitter 101 for Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gugliucci, Nicole E.; Gay, P.

    2010-01-01

    Twitter is a new media tool that allows users to connect to each other via short 140-character messages, called "tweets", and network with people from around the globe with similar interests. Such a tool is used by science centers, observatories, and space missions to update their "followers” on the latest astronomy news. We present on some of the ways that astronomy can be effectively communicated to the interested public in such a format and highlight the importance of dialog with members of the community. In addition, we introduce some of the many Twitter-related tools for keeping track of a busy account and monitoring your reach.

  12. Immanuel Halton, the astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barber, P. M.

    1996-02-01

    Immanuel Halton was born in Cumberland, studied at Grays Inn, London during the later stages of the English Civil War and, during the Commonwealth, entered the service of Henry Howard, later 6th Duke of Norfolk. He pursued his mathematical and astronomical interests while auditor to the Duke of Norfolk. He met with John Flamsteed, encouraged the latter's interest in mathematics and astronomy and became his first patron, as well as contributing observations to Flamsteed's published works. Immanuel ended his days at Wingfield Manor, Derbyshire. A short biographical piece on Immanuel Halton appeared in the Journal in the early 1950s, consisting mostly of quotations from Flamsteed's 'Self Inspections' and Baily's 'Life of Flamsteed'. 1996 is the 350th anniversary of Flamsteed's birth, and it is hoped that this fuller account will flesh out the bones of his first patron.

  13. Astronomers against Newton.

    PubMed

    Higgitt, Rebekah

    2004-03-01

    Francis Baily's publication of the manuscripts of John Flamsteed, the first Astronomer Royal, provoked a furious response. Flamsteed had quarrelled with Isaac Newton, and described him in terms unforgivable to those who claimed him as a paragon of all virtues, both moral and scientific. Baily was condemned for putting Flamsteed's complaints in the public sphere. However, his supporters saw his work as a critique of the excessive hero-worship accorded to Newton. Written when the word 'scientist' had been newly coined, this work and the debates it provoked gives us an insight into contemporary views of the role of the man of science and of the use of science to back political, religious and moral positions.

  14. The Amateur Astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, Patrick

    This 2000 Edition of Sir Patrick Moore’s classic book has been completely revised in the light of changes in technology. Not only do these changes include commercially available astronomical telescopes and software, but also what we know and understand about the universe. There are many new photographs and illustrations. Writing in the easy-going style that made him famous as a writer and broadcaster, Sir Patrick introduced astronomy and amateur observing together, so that his reader gets an idea of what he is observing at the same time as how to observe. Almost half the book is Appendices. These are hugely comprehensive and provide hints and tips, as well as data (year 2000 onwards) for pretty well every aspect of amateur astronomy. This is probably the only book in which all this information is collected in one place.

  15. East Asian astronomical records

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stephenson, F. Richard

    Chinese, Japanese and Korean celestial observations have made major contributions to Applied Historical Astronomy, especially in the study of supernovae, comets, Earth's rotation (using eclipses) and solar variability (via sunspots and aurorae). Few original texts now survive; almost all extant records exist only in printed versions, often with the loss of much detail. The earliest Chinese astronomical observations extend back to before 1000 BC. However, fairly systematic records are only available since 200 BC - and even these have suffered losses through wars, etc. By around AD 800, many independent observations are available from Japan and Korea and these provide a valuable supplement to the Chinese data. Throughout East Asia dates were expressed in terms of a luni-solar calendar and conversion to the Julian or Gregorian calendar can be readily effected.

  16. The Development of Mauna Kea as an Astronomical Site

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DeVorkin, David H.

    2015-08-01

    This is a proposal to hold a panel discussion at the 2015 IAU General Assembly, within the three-day Focus Meeting FM2, “Astronomical Heritage: Progressing the UNESCO-IAU Initiative” August 11-13. We believe the proposal is germane to FM2 in that it is directed to "Recognizing the twentieth-century heritage of astronomy." This panel will consist of a set of moderated and linked talks by individuals who were central to the creation of the Institute for Astronomy at the University of Hawaii, and to building observatory sites both on Haleakala and Mauna Kea. Invited discussants thus far include John T. Jefferies, David Morrison, Alan Tokunaga and Ann Boesgaard. The purpose of the panel discussion will be to provide a platform wherein astronomers will share their recollections and views relating to the history of the establishment of Mauna Kea as an astronomical observatory. They, along with fellow discussants and the audience, will then consider what is critical about this history and suggest steps for adequately preserving and elucidating that history. What were the chief opportunities, challenges and then hurdles to overcome in the identification and then implementation of Mauna Kea as an ideal site, and how did the University of Hawaii become the host institution for its establishment? What was learned from sites established on Haleakela by the U. S. Air Force and the Smithsonian that focused attention on Mauna Kea? How and why did NASA become interested in establishing a large observatory there? And once the site was established and its qualities fully appreciated, how did astronomical institutions from all over the world join to populate the peaks and saddles of the dwelling place of the goddess Poliahu? Each of the invited participants will be encouraged to make extended opening statements relating to their experiences, but at least half of the session will be devoted to structured questions from the moderator, and open discussion during audience Q&A.

  17. pwkit: Astronomical utilities in Python

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Williams, Peter K. G.; Clavel, Maïca; Newton, Elisabeth; Ryzhkov, Denis

    2017-04-01

    pwkit is a collection of miscellaneous astronomical utilities in Python, with an emphasis on radio astronomy, reading and writing various data formats, and convenient command-line utilities. Utilities include basic astronomical calculations, data visualization tools such as mapping arbitrary data to color scales and tracing contours, and data input and output utilities such as streaming output from other programs.

  18. The Victorian Amateur Astronomer: Independent Astronomical Research in Britain 1820-1920

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chapman, Allan

    1999-01-01

    This is the first book to look in detail at amateur astronomy in Victorian Britain. It deals with the technical issues that were active in Victorian astronomy, and reviews the problems of finance, patronage and the dissemination of scientific ideas. It also examines the relationship between the amateur and professional in Britain. It contains a wealth of previously unpublished biographical and anecdotal material, and an extended bibliography with notes incorporating much new scholarship. In The Victorian Amateur Astronomer, Allan Chapman shows that while on the continent astronomical research was lavishly supported by the state, in Britain such research was paid for out of the pockets of highly educated, wealthy gentlemen the so-called Grand Amateurs . It was these powerful individuals who commissioned the telescopes, built the observatories, ran the learned societies, and often stole discoveries from their state-employed colleagues abroad. In addition to the Grand Amateurs , Victorian Britain also contained many self-taught amateurs. Although they belonged to no learned societies, these people provide a barometer of the popularity of astronomy in that age. In the late 19th century, the comfortable middle classes clergymen, lawyers, physicians and retired military officers took to astronomy as a serious hobby. They formed societies which focused on observation, lectures and discussions, and it was through this medium that women first came to play a significant role in British astronomy. Readership: Undergraduate and postgraduate students studying the history of science or humanities, professional historians of science, engineering and technology, particularly those with an interest in astronomy, the development of astronomical ideas, scientific instrument makers, and amateur astronomers.

  19. Bruce Medalists at the Mt. Wilson Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tenn, J. S.

    2004-12-01

    The institution which succeeded the Mt. Wilson Station of Yerkes Observatory in 1904 has had six names and three sites. From 1948-1980 it was united with Caltech's Palomar Observatory, and since then its main observatory has been in Chile, though still headquartered on Santa Barbara Street in Pasadena. For more than half of the twentieth century it was the leading observatory in the world. One bit of evidence for this is the amazing number of its staff members awarded the Bruce Medal. The Catherine Wolfe Bruce Gold Medal of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific has been awarded for lifetime contributions to astronomy since 1898. It is an international award. It wasn't until 1963 that the number of medalists who had worked primarily in the United States reached half the total. Yet fourteen of the first 87 medalists spent most of their careers at Mt. Wilson, including the period when it was Mt. Wilson and Palomar, and another three were Caltech observers who used the telescopes of the jointly operated observatory. Several more medalists made substantial use of the telescopes on Mt. Wilson and Palomar Mountain. We will discuss highlights of the careers of a number of these distinguished astronomers: directors George Ellery Hale, Walter Adams, Ira Bowen, and Horace Babcock; solar observer and satellite discoverer Seth Nicholson; instrument builder Harold Babcock; galactic and cosmological observers Frederick Seares, Edwin Hubble, Walter Baade, Rudolph Minkowski, and Allan Sandage; and spectroscopists Paul Merrill, Alfred Joy, Olin Wilson, Jesse Greenstein, Maarten Schmidt, and Wallace Sargent. We will touch briefly on others who used Mt. Wilson and/or Palomar, including Harlow Shapley, Joel Stebbins, Charlotte Moore Sitterly, Donald Osterbrock, and Albert Whitford.

  20. Lessons from the MicroObservatory Net

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brecher, K.; Sadler, P.; Gould, R.; Leiker, S.; Antonucci, P.; Deutsch, F.

    1998-12-01

    Over the past several years, we have developed a fully integrated automated astronomical telescope system which combines the imaging power of a cooled CCD, with a self-contained and weatherized 15 cm reflecting optical telescope and mount. Each telescope can be pointed and focused remotely, and filters, field of view and exposure times can be changed easily. The MicroObservatory Net consists of five of these telescopes. They are being deployed around the world at widely distributed longitudes for access to distant night skies during local daytime. Remote access to the MicroObservatories over the Internet has been available to select schools since 1995. The telescopes can be controlled in real time or in delay mode, from any computer using Web-based software. Individuals have access to all of the telescope control functions without the need for an `on-site' operator. After a MicroObservatory completes a job, the user is automatically notified by e-mail that the image is available for viewing and downloading from the Web site. Images are archived at the Web site, along with sample challenges and a user bulletin board, all of which encourage collaboration between schools. The Internet address of the telescopes is http://mo-www.harvard.edu/MicroObservatory/. The telescopes were designed for classroom instruction by teachers, as well as for use by students and amateur astronomers for original scientific research projects. In this talk, we will review some of the experiences we, students and teachers have had in using the telescopes. Support for the MicroObservatory Net has been provided by the NSF, Apple Computer, Inc. and Kodak, Inc.

  1. Fostering Student Awareness in Observatory STEM Careers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keonaonaokalauae Acohido, Alexis Ann; Michaud, Peter D.; Gemini Public Information and Outreach Staff

    2016-01-01

    It takes more than scientists to run an observatory. Like most observatories, only about 20% of Gemini Observatory's staff is PhD. Scientists, but 100% of those scientists would not be able to do their jobs without the help of engineers, administrators, and other support staff that make things run smoothly. Gemini's Career Brochure was first published in 2014 to show that there are many different career paths available (especially in local host communities) at an astronomical observatory. Along with the printed career brochure, there are supplementary videos available on Gemini's website and Youtube pages that provide a more detailed and personal glimpse into the day-in-the-life of a wide assortment of Gemini employees. A weakness in most observatory's outreach programming point to the notion that students (and teachers) feel there is a disconnect between academics and where students would like to end up in their career future. This project is one of the ways Gemini addresses these concerns. During my 6-month internship at Gemini, I have updated the Career Brochure website conducted more in-depth interviews with Gemini staff to include as inserts with the brochure, and expanded the array of featured careers. The goal of my work is to provide readers with detailed and individualized employee career paths to show; 1) that there are many ways to establish a career in the STEM fields, and 2), that the STEM fields are vastly diverse.

  2. The University of Montana's Blue Mountain Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Friend, D. B.

    2004-12-01

    The University of Montana's Department of Physics and Astronomy runs the state of Montana's only professional astronomical observatory. The Observatory, located on nearby Blue Mountain, houses a 16 inch Boller and Chivens Cassegrain reflector (purchased in 1970), in an Ash dome. The Observatory sits just below the summit ridge, at an elevation of approximately 6300 feet. Our instrumentation includes an Op-Tec SSP-5A photoelectric photometer and an SBIG ST-9E CCD camera. We have the only undergraduate astronomy major in the state (technically a physics major with an astronomy option), so our Observatory is an important component of our students' education. Students have recently carried out observing projects on the photometry of variable stars and color photometry of open clusters and OB associations. In my poster I will show some of the data collected by students in their observing projects. The Observatory is also used for public open houses during the summer months, and these have become very popular: at times we have had 300 visitors in a single night.

  3. Design of a Lunar Farside Observatory

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1989-01-01

    The design of a mantendable lunar farside observatory and science base is presented. A farside observatory will allow high accuracy astronomical observations, as well as the opportunity to perform geological and low gravity studies on the Moon. The requirements of the observatory and its support facilities are determined, and a preliminary timeline for the project development is presented. The primary areas of investigation include observatory equipment, communications, habitation, and surface operations. Each area was investigated to determine the available options, and each option was evaluated to determine the advantages and disadvantages. The options selected for incorporation into the design of the farside base are presented. The observatory equipment deemed most suitable for placement on the lunar farside consist of large optical and radio arrays and seismic equipment. A communications system consisting of a temporary satellite about the L sub 2 libration point and followed by a satellite at the stable L sub 5 libration point was selected. A space station common module was found to be the most practical option for housing the astronauts at the base. Finally, a support system based upon robotic construction vehicles and the use of lunar materials was determined to be a necessary component of the base.

  4. Recent Activity at the Astronomical Photographic Data Archive

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cline, J. Donald; Castelaz, M.; Barker, T.

    2011-01-01

    The Astronomical Photographic Data Archive (APDA) located at the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI) was established in November 2007. APDA is dedicated to the task of collecting, restoring, preserving and storing astronomical photographic data. APDA is also tasked with scanning each image and establishing a database of images that can be accessed via the Internet by the global community of scientists, researchers and students. APDA is a new type of astronomical observatory - one that harnesses analog data of the night sky taken for more than a century and making that data digitally available. APDA is housed in a newly renovated Research Building on the PARI campus. An award from the NSF allowed renovation of the heating and air conditioning. Plates in APDA are kept in a 20 C +/- 1 C area with humidity at 38% +/- 3%. Renovation of the electrical system with backup power allows for support of a data center with a networked storage system and software donated from EMC Corp. The storage system can hold more than 300 terabytes of research data which can be accessed through multiple gigabyte connectivity to the Internet. APDA has a collection of more than 100,000 photographic plates and film collections, as well as major instrumentation, from NASA, the STScI, the US Naval Observatory, the Harvard Smithsonian CfA and others. APDA possesses two high precision glass plate scanners, GAMMA I and GAMMA II, that were built for NASA and the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI). The scanners were used to develop the HST Guide Star Catalog and Digitized Sky Survey. We will present the status of GAMMA II and the recent donations of astronomical plates and current research projects.

  5. Private Observatories in South Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rijsdijk, C.

    2016-12-01

    Descriptions of private observatories in South Africa, written by their owners. Positions, equipment descriptions and observing programmes are given. Included are: Klein Karoo Observatory (B. Monard), Cederberg Observatory (various), Centurion Planetary and Lunar Observatory (C. Foster), Le Marischel Observatory (L. Ferreira), Sterkastaaing Observatory (M. Streicher), Henley on Klip (B. Fraser), Archer Observatory (B. Dumas), Overbeek Observatory (A. Overbeek), Overberg Observatory (A. van Staden), St Cyprian's School Observatory, Fisherhaven Small Telescope Observatory (J. Retief), COSPAR 0433 (G. Roberts), COSPAR 0434 (I. Roberts), Weltevreden Karoo Observatory (D. Bullis), Winobs (M. Shafer)

  6. Astronomers Unveiling Life's Cosmic Origins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2009-02-01

    Processes that laid the foundation for life on Earth -- star and planet formation and the production of complex organic molecules in interstellar space -- are yielding their secrets to astronomers armed with powerful new research tools, and even better tools soon will be available. Astronomers described three important developments at a symposium on the "Cosmic Cradle of Life" at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Chicago, IL. Chemistry Cycle The Cosmic Chemistry Cycle CREDIT: Bill Saxton, NRAO/AUI/NSF Full Size Image Files Chemical Cycle Graphic (above image, JPEG, 129K) Graphic With Text Blocks (JPEG, 165K) High-Res TIFF (44.2M) High-Res TIFF With Text Blocks (44.2M) In one development, a team of astrochemists released a major new resource for seeking complex interstellar molecules that are the precursors to life. The chemical data released by Anthony Remijan of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) and his university colleagues is part of the Prebiotic Interstellar Molecule Survey, or PRIMOS, a project studying a star-forming region near the center of our Milky Way Galaxy. PRIMOS is an effort of the National Science Foundation's Center for Chemistry of the Universe, started at the University of Virginia (UVa) in October 2008, and led by UVa Professor Brooks H. Pate. The data, produced by the NSF's Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT) in West Virginia, came from more than 45 individual observations totalling more than nine GigaBytes of data and over 1.4 million individual frequency channels. Scientists can search the GBT data for specific radio frequencies, called spectral lines -- telltale "fingerprints" -- naturally emitted by molecules in interstellar space. "We've identified more than 720 spectral lines in this collection, and about 240 of those are from unknown molecules," Remijan said. He added, "We're making available to all scientists the best collection of data below 50 GHz ever produced for

  7. Swift Observatory Space Simulation Testing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Espiritu, Mellina; Choi, Michael K.; Scocik, Christopher S.

    2004-01-01

    The Swift Observatory is a Middle-Class Explorer (MIDEX) mission that is a rapidly re-pointing spacecraft with immediate data distribution capability to the astronomical community. Its primary objectives are to characterize and determine the origin of Gamma Ray Bursts (GRBs) and to use the collected data on GRB phenomena in order to probe the universe and gain insight into the physics of black hole formation and early universe. The main components of the spacecraft are the Burst Alert Telescope (BAT), Ultraviolet and Optical Telescope (UVOT), X-Ray Telescope (XRT), and Optical Bench (OB) instruments coupled with the Swift spacecraft (S/C) bus. The Swift Observatory will be tested at the Space Environment Simulation (SES) chamber at the Goddard Space Flight Center from May to June 2004 in order to characterize its thermal behavior in a vacuum environment. In order to simulate the independent thermal zones required by the BAT, XRT, UVOT, and OB instruments, the spacecraft is mounted on a chariot structure capable of maintaining adiabatic interfaces and enclosed in a modified, four section MSX fixture in order to accommodate the strategic placement of seven cryopanels (on four circuits), four heater panels, and a radiation source burst simulator mechanism. There are additionally 55 heater circuits on the spacecraft. To mitigate possible migration of silicone contaminants from BAT to the XRT and UVOT instruments, a contamination enclosure is to be fabricated around the BAT at the uppermost section of the MSX fixture. This paper discuses the test requirements and implemented thermal vacuum test configuration for the Swift Observatory.

  8. The Boulder magnetic observatory

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Love, Jeffrey J.; Finn, Carol A.; Pedrie, Kolby L.; Blum, Cletus C.

    2015-08-14

    The Boulder magnetic observatory has, since 1963, been operated by the Geomagnetism Program of the U.S. Geological Survey in accordance with Bureau and national priorities. Data from the observatory are used for a wide variety of scientific purposes, both pure and applied. The observatory also supports developmental projects within the Geomagnetism Program and collaborative projects with allied geophysical agencies.

  9. SOFIA: Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Erickson, E. F.

    1989-01-01

    SOFIA will be a three meter class telescope operating in a Boeing 747, offering astronomers routine access to infrared wavelengths unavailable from the ground, and with the means to observe transient astronomical events from anywhere in the world. The concept is based on 15 years of experience with NASA's Kuiper Airborne Observatory (KAO), which SOFIA will replace in the mid 1990's. SOFIA's wavelength range covers nearly four decades of the electromagnetic spectrum: from the visible, throughout the infrared and submillimeter, to the microwave region. Relative to the KAO, SOFIA will be roughly ten times more sensitive for compact sources, enabling observations of fainter objects and measurements at higher spectral resolution. Also, it will have three times the angular resolving power for wavelengths greater than 30 microns, permitting more detailed imaging at far infrared wavelengths.

  10. Designing Hydrologic Observatories as a Community Resource

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hooper, R. P.; Duncan, J. M.

    2004-12-01

    CUAHSI convened a workshop in August 2004 to explore what makes a successful hydrologic observatory. Because of their high cost, only a small number of observatories will be operated, at least initially. (CUAHSI has recommended a pilot network of 5 observatories to develop operational experience and an eventual network of approximately 15 sites.) Because hydrologic scientists can work "in their backyard" (unlike oceanographers or astronomers), hydrologic observatories must offer significant advantages over current methods of field work to successfully attract researchers. Twenty-four teams of scientists submitted "prospectuses" of potential locations for hydrologic observatories for consideration by network attendees. These documents (available at http://www.cuahsi.org) were marketing documents to the workshop participants, who voted for a hypothetical network of 5 observatories from the 24 proposed sites. This network formed the basis for a day of discussions on necessary attributes of core data and how to form a network of observatories from a collection of sites that are designed and implemented individually. Key findings included: 1) Core data must be balanced among disciplines. Although the hydrologic cycle is an organizing principle for the design of HOs, physical data cannot dominate the core data; chemical and biological data, although more expensive to collect, must be given equal footing. 2) New data collection must strategically leverage existing data. Resources are always limited, so that a successful HO must carefully target gaps in existing data, as determined by an explicitly stated conceptual model, and fill them rather than designing an independent study. 3) Site logistics must support remote researchers. Significant resources will be necessary for on-site staff to handle housing, transportation, permitting and other needs. 4) Network-level hypotheses are required early in the implementation of HOs. A network will only emerge around hypotheses

  11. Women Astronomers through History

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dobrosavljevic-Grujic, Lj.

    2008-10-01

    We review the contributions of women to astronomy starting from the antique Greece and Alexandria, and mention briefly some works of nun-scientists in the Middle Ages, which are of interest only for keeping alive the spirit of inquiry during this Dark Age. We discuss in more details important contributions coming after the Scientific Revolution and Enlightenment, made by women working within their families, as assistants to their brothers or husbands. We show that by the late 19th century the role of women in astronomy becomes more independent, with more women working not only as "computers" in the great observatories, but also making important discoveries that placed them in a very high position as scientists at the dawn of 20th century.

  12. The Astronomical Unit now

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Standish, E. M.

    2005-04-01

    The Astronomical Unit is one of the most basic units of astronomy: the scale of the solar system. Yet its long and colorful history is sprinkled liberally with incorrect descriptions and mis-quoted definitions - today as much as ever. Over the last half century, the accuracy of the au determinations has improved dramatically: optical (triangulation) methods have given way to modern electronic observations, high-speed computers, and dedicated efforts to improve planetary ephemerides. Typical uncertainties in the value of the au have decreased from many tens of thousands of kilometers to the present level of only a few meters. With the solar system providing a very clean, undisturbed dynamical model, the ephemerides have been used for a variety of exotic physical tests: alternative theories of gravitation, d(G)/dt, d(au)/dt, etc. In the beginning of this modern era, the author happened to be a witness to a couple of rather key events; more lately, a participant. A couple of these personal experiences are related.

  13. XEphem: Interactive Astronomical Ephemeris

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Downey, Elwood Charles

    2011-12-01

    XEphem is a scientific-grade interactive astronomical ephemeris package for UNIX-like systems. Written in C, X11 and Motif, it is easily ported to systems. Among other things, XEphem: computes heliocentric, geocentric and topocentric information for all objects; has built-in support for all planets; the moons of Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Earth; central meridian longitude of Mars and Jupiter; Saturn's rings; and Jupiter's Great Red Spot; allows user-defined objects including stars, deepsky objects, asteroids, comets and Earth satellites; provides special efficient handling of large catalogs including Tycho, Hipparcos, GSC; displays data in configurable tabular formats in conjunction with several interactive graphical views; displays a night-at-a-glance 24 hour graphic showing when any selected objects are up; displays 3-D stereo Solar System views that are particularly well suited for visualizing comet trajectories; quickly finds all close pairs of objects in the sky; and sorts and prints all catalogs with very flexible criteria for creating custom observing lists. Its capabilities are listed more fully in the user manual introduction.

  14. Virtual Astronomical Pipelines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dave, R.; Protopapas, P.; Lehner, M.

    2007-10-01

    The sheer magnitude of databases and data rates in new surveys makes it hard to develop pipelines to enable both the analysis of data and the federation of these databases for correlation and followup. There is thus a compelling need to facilitate the creation and management of dynamic workflow pipelines that enable correlating data between separate, parallel streams; changing the workflow in response to an event; using the NVO to obtain additional needed information from databases; and modifying the observing program of a primary survey to follow-up a transient or moving object. This paper describes such a Virtual Astronomical Pipeline (VAP) system which is running in the TAOS project. The software enables components in the pipeline to react to events encapsulated in XML messages, modifying and subsequently routing these messages to multiple other components. This architecture allows for the bootstrapping of components individually in the development process and for dynamic reconfiguration of the pipeline as a response to external and internal events. The software will be extended for future work in combining the results of surveys and followups into a global virtual pipeline.

  15. Pulsating stars and the Virtual Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suárez, Juan Carlos

    2017-09-01

    Virtual Observatory is one of the most used internet-based protocols in astronomy. It has become somewhat natural to find, manage, compare, visualize and download observations from very different archives of astronomical observations with no effort. The VO technology beyond that is now being a reality for asteroseismology, not only for observations but also for theoretical models. Here I give a brief description of the most important VO tools related with asteroseismology, as well as a rough outline of the current development in this field.

  16. Why choosing the Virtual Observatory in Geodesy and Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deleflie, F.; Lambert, S.; Collilieux, X.; Berthier, J.; Barache, C.; Coulot, D.; Gontier, A.-M.; Exertier, P.

    2009-04-01

    This poster presents the context of the astronomical Virtual Observatory (VO), an ambitious international proposal to provide uniform, convenient access to disparate, geographically dispersed archives of astronomical data from software which runs on the computer on the astronomer's desktop. The VO could be of interest for the geodetic community: we present here some of our efforts in this direction that we have recently achieved. Astronomers using that Virtual Observatory are now organized within an international association called the International Virtual Observatory Alliance (IVOA). As noted on the IVOA website (http://www.ivoa.net/), IVOA was formed in June 2002 with a mission to "facilitate the international coordination and collaboration necessary for the development and deployment of the tools, systems and organizational structures necessary to enable the international utilization of astronomical archives as an integrated and interoperating virtual observatory." The "Groupe de Recherche de Géodésie Spatiale (GRGS)" now routinely delivers geodetic products to most of the space geodetic services of the International Association of Geodesy (IAG): IERS, IGS, ILRS, IVS, and IDS. Some of these products are now natively built and archived following the data format recommended by IVOA, the VO-Table format. We present this format, which is based on the XML format, and we list the reasons why we chose to use it. We also enumerate the list of geodetic products actually published with this format, with the associated available Webservices, and we show how easy it is to compare time series obtained by various analysis centers. We finally give as well an example of such a comparison.

  17. Virtual Observatory - India : Information Support For Remote Users

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alladi, Vagiswari; Birdie, Christina; Bawdekar, Nirupama; Kembhavi, Ajit; Sheshadri, Geetha

    A Virtual Observatory (VO) seeks to provide a single virtual platform which will provide astronomers easy access to large astronomical data over many different wavelengths. The data are gathered from space-based missions and from ground-based telescopes. VO related projects are being started in India also, and Virtual Observatory-India is the brain child of IUCAA as a collaboration between astronomers and software developers in the country. Specific programs are being developed, and mirror sites of databases are being created. They have received funding from the government. Astronomical Libraries in India will play a major role in this project in the form of Virtual Information Support. The Virtual Information Support (VIS) will serve as a tool for meeting the information needs of the astronomical community in the country, from anywhere at anytime. It will be a major source of support to provide seamless access to the resources held in the astronomy libraries, including the online interactive services. FORSA (Forum for Resource Sharing in Astronomy & Astrophysics) is an informal cohesive group of astronomy libraries in India, which will be the force behind this Virtual Library to share resources and services. The major VIS initiative in 2002 will be the design and implementation of a web site - with features such as newsletter, an integrated library database of all the libraries of the FORSA members, and an online interactive form to facilitate the interlibrary exchange.

  18. The Lowell Observatory Predoctoral Student Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prato, Lisa A.

    2010-01-01

    Lowell Observatory is pleased to solicit applications for our Predoctoral Scholar Fellowship Program. Now beginning its fourth year, this program is designed to provide unique research opportunities to graduate students in good standing, currently enrolled at Ph.D. granting institutions. Several projects are available in collaboration with Lowell staff astronomers; we anticipate the availability of an increasing variety of projects over the next years as completion of our new 4.2 meter Discovery Channel Telescope and corresponding instrumentation progresses. Student research is expected to lead to a thesis dissertation appropriate for graduation at the doctoral level at the student's home institution. Currently, three students are enrolled in our program; our first graduate completed the program in August, 2009. The Observatory provides competitive compensation and full benefits to student scholars. For more information, see http://www.lowell.edu/rsch/predoc.php and links therein. Applications for Spring 2010 are due by December 1, 2009.

  19. The Lowell Observatory Predoctoral Scholar Program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prato, Lisa A.

    2017-01-01

    Lowell Observatory is pleased to solicit applications for our Predoctoral Scholar Fellowship Program. Now beginning its ninth year, this program is designed to provide unique research opportunities to graduate students in good standing, currently enrolled at Ph.D. granting institutions. Lowell staff research spans a wide range of topics, from astronomical instrumentation, to icy bodies in our solar system, exoplanet science, stellar populations, star formation, and dwarf galaxies. The Observatory's new 4.3 meter Discovery Channel Telescope is now operating at full science capacity. Student research is expected to lead to a thesis dissertation appropriate for graduation at the doctoral level at the student's home institution. For more information, see http://www2.lowell.edu/rsch/predoc.php and links therein. Applications for Fall 2017 are due by May 1, 2017; alternate application dates will be considered on an individual basis.

  20. Preserving the History of Wesleyan University's Van Vleck Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kilgard, Roy E.; Erickson, Paul; Herbst, William; Redfield, Seth; Williams, Amrys

    2016-01-01

    Since its opening in 1916, the Van Vleck Observatory at Wesleyan University has been dedicated to the joint mission of astronomical education and research. In celebration of the Observatory's centennial year, we are undertaking a number of projects to preserve and chronicle its history. The centerpiece of these efforts has been the renovation of the 20-inch Alvan Clark refracting telescope. Through careful compromise of historical restoration and modernization, we have ensured the future of one of the nation's last large, long-focus refractors well into the 21st century. In addition, we are producing an historical exhibition in the Observatory and online that will open to the public in the spring of 2016. Our exhibition explores the place-based nature of astronomical research, the scientific instruments, labor, and individuals that have connected places around the world in networks of observation, and the broader history of how observational astronomy has linked local people, amateur observers, professional astronomers, and the tools and objects that have facilitated their work under Connecticut's skies over the past 100 years. We are also collecting memories from the community to enrich our exhibition. If you have a story about the Van Vleck Observatory you would like to share with our researchers, please contact one of the authors.

  1. Cosmic Blasts Much More Common, Astronomers Discover

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2006-08-01

    A cosmic explosion seen last February may have been the "tip of an iceberg," showing that powerful, distant gamma ray bursts are outnumbered ten-to-one by less-energetic cousins, according to an international team of astronomers. A study of the explosion with X-ray and radio telescopes showed that it is "100 times less energetic than gamma ray bursts seen in the distant universe. We were able to see it because it's relatively nearby," said Alicia Soderberg, of Caltech, leader of the research team. The scientists reported their findings in the August 31 issue of the journal Nature. The explosion is called an X-ray flash, and was detected by the Swift satellite on February 18. The astronomers subsequently studied the object using the National Science Foundation's Very Large Array (VLA) radio telescope, NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory, and the Ryle radio telescope in the UK. "This object tells us that there probably is a rich diversity of cosmic explosions in our local Universe that we only now are starting to detect. These explosions aren't playing by the rules that we thought we understood," said Dale Frail of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory. Illustration of a Magnetar Illustration of a Magnetar The February blast seems to fill a gap between ordinary supernova explosions, which leave behind a dense neutron star, and gamma ray bursts, which leave behind a black hole, a concentration of mass so dense that not even light can escape it. Some X-ray flashes, the new research suggests, leave behind a magnetar, a neutron star with a magnetic field 100-1000 times stronger than that of an ordinary neutron star. "This explosion occurred in a galaxy about 470 million light-years away. If it had been at the distances of gamma ray bursts, as much as billions of light-years away, we would not have been able to see it," Frail said. "We think that the principal difference between gamma ray bursts and X-ray flashes and ordinary supernova explosions is that the blasts that

  2. Light Emitting Diodes and Astronomical Environments: Results from in situ Field Measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Craine, Brian L.; Craine, Eric R.

    2015-05-01

    Light emitting diode (LED) light fixtures are rapidly becoming industry standards for outdoor lighting. They are promoted on the strength of long lifetimes (hence economic efficiencies), low power requirements, directability, active brightness controls, and energy efficiency. They also tend to produce spectral shifts that are undesirable in astronomical settings, but which can be moderated by filters. LED lighting for continuous roadway and parking lot lighting is particularly popular, and many communities are in the process of retrofitting Low Pressure Sodium (LPS) and other lights by tens of thousands of new LED fixtures at a time. What is the impact of this process on astronomical observatories and on dark skies upon which amateur astronomers rely? We bypass modeling and predictions to make actual measurements of these lights in the field. We report on original ground, airborne, and satellite observations of LED lights and discuss their light budgets, zenith angle functions, and impacts on observatory environs.

  3. Astronomical Instrumentation System Markup Language

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goldbaum, Jesse M.

    2016-05-01

    The Astronomical Instrumentation System Markup Language (AISML) is an Extensible Markup Language (XML) based file format for maintaining and exchanging information about astronomical instrumentation. The factors behind the need for an AISML are first discussed followed by the reasons why XML was chosen as the format. Next it's shown how XML also provides the framework for a more precise definition of an astronomical instrument and how these instruments can be combined to form an Astronomical Instrumentation System (AIS). AISML files for several instruments as well as one for a sample AIS are provided. The files demonstrate how AISML can be utilized for various tasks from web page generation and programming interface to instrument maintenance and quality management. The advantages of widespread adoption of AISML are discussed.

  4. Astronomical Significance of Ancient Monuments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simonia, I.

    2011-06-01

    Astronomical significance of Gokhnari megalithic monument (eastern Georgia) is considered. Possible connection of Amirani ancient legend with Gokhnari monument is discussed. Concepts of starry practicality and solar stations are proposed.

  5. Annotations of a Public Astronomer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adamo, A.

    2011-06-01

    Angelo Adamo is an Italian astronomer and artist interested in inspiring people with scientifically-based tales. He has recently published two illustrated books exploring the relationships between mankind and cosmos through physics, art, literature, music, cartoons, and movies.

  6. Digital display of astronomical data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grandi, S. A.

    1982-08-01

    A brief summary is given of techniques to enhance for photographic display digital astronomical images. The phenomenon of photographic deresolution is discussed and a proposed algorithm, the highpass squared filter, is presented to correct for this effect.

  7. Interactive Astronomical Data Analysis Facility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Klinglesmith, D. A., III

    1980-01-01

    A description is given of the Interactive Astronomical Data Analysis Facility (IADAF) which performs interactive analysis of astronomical data for resident and visiting scientists. The facilities include a Grant measuring engine, a PDS 1010A microdensitometer, a COMTAL image display system and a PDP 11/40 computer system. Both hardware and software systems are examined, including a description of thirteen overlay programs. Some uses of the IADAF are indicated.

  8. Sixteenth Century Astronomical Telescopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Usher, P. D.

    2001-12-01

    Ophelia in Shakespeare's Hamlet is named for the ``moist star" which in mythology is the partner of Hamlet's royal Sun. Together the couple seem destined to rule on earth just as their celestial counterparts rule the heavens, but the tragedy is that they are afflicted, just as the Sun and Moon are blemished. In 1.3 Laertes lectures Ophelia on love and chastity, describing first Cytherean phases (crescent to gibbous) and then Lunar craters. Spots mar the Sun (1.1, 3.1). Also reported are Jupiter's Red Spot (3.4) and the resolution of the Milky Way into stars (2.2). These interpretations are well-founded and support the cosmic allegory. Observations must have been made with optical aid, probably the perspective glass of Leonard Digges, father of Thomas Digges. Notably absent from Hamlet is mention of the Galilean moons, owing perhaps to the narrow field-of-view of the telescope. That discovery is later celebrated in Cymbeline, published soon after Galileo's Siderius Nuncius in 1610. In 5.4 of Cymbeline the four ghosts dance ``in imitation of planetary motions" and at Jupiter's behest place a book on the chest of Posthumus Leonatus. His name identifies the Digges father and son as the source of data in Hamlet since Jupiter's moons were discovered after the deaths of Leonard (``leon+hart") and Thomas (the ``lion's whelp"). Lines in 5.4 urge us not to read more into the book than is contained between its covers; this is understandable because Hamlet had already reported the other data in support of heliocentricism and the cosmic model discussed and depicted by Thomas Digges in 1576. I conclude therefore that astronomical telescopy began in England before the last quarter of the sixteenth century.

  9. Virtual Observatories, Data Mining, and Astroinformatics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borne, Kirk

    The historical, current, and future trends in knowledge discovery from data in astronomy are presented here. The story begins with a brief history of data gathering and data organization. A description of the development ofnew information science technologies for astronomical discovery is then presented. Among these are e-Science and the virtual observatory, with its data discovery, access, display, and integration protocols; astroinformatics and data mining for exploratory data analysis, information extraction, and knowledge discovery from distributed data collections; new sky surveys' databases, including rich multivariate observational parameter sets for large numbers of objects; and the emerging discipline of data-oriented astronomical research, called astroinformatics. Astroinformatics is described as the fourth paradigm of astronomical research, following the three traditional research methodologies: observation, theory, and computation/modeling. Astroinformatics research areas include machine learning, data mining, visualization, statistics, semantic science, and scientific data management.Each of these areas is now an active research discipline, with significantscience-enabling applications in astronomy. Research challenges and sample research scenarios are presented in these areas, in addition to sample algorithms for data-oriented research. These information science technologies enable scientific knowledge discovery from the increasingly large and complex data collections in astronomy. The education and training of the modern astronomy student must consequently include skill development in these areas, whose practitioners have traditionally been limited to applied mathematicians, computer scientists, and statisticians. Modern astronomical researchers must cross these traditional discipline boundaries, thereby borrowing the best of breed methodologies from multiple disciplines. In the era of large sky surveys and numerous large telescopes, the potential

  10. Learning from FITS: Limitations in use in modern astronomical research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, B.; Jenness, T.; Economou, F.; Greenfield, P.; Hirst, P.; Berry, D. S.; Bray, E.; Gray, N.; Muna, D.; Turner, J.; de Val-Borro, M.; Santander-Vela, J.; Shupe, D.; Good, J.; Berriman, G. B.; Kitaeff, S.; Fay, J.; Laurino, O.; Alexov, A.; Landry, W.; Masters, J.; Brazier, A.; Schaaf, R.; Edwards, K.; Redman, R. O.; Marsh, T. R.; Streicher, O.; Norris, P.; Pascual, S.; Davie, M.; Droettboom, M.; Robitaille, T.; Campana, R.; Hagen, A.; Hartogh, P.; Klaes, D.; Craig, M. W.; Homeier, D.

    2015-09-01

    The Flexible Image Transport System (FITS) standard has been a great boon to astronomy, allowing observatories, scientists and the public to exchange astronomical information easily. The FITS standard, however, is showing its age. Developed in the late 1970s, the FITS authors made a number of implementation choices that, while common at the time, are now seen to limit its utility with modern data. The authors of the FITS standard could not anticipate the challenges which we are facing today in astronomical computing. Difficulties we now face include, but are not limited to, addressing the need to handle an expanded range of specialized data product types (data models), being more conducive to the networked exchange and storage of data, handling very large datasets, and capturing significantly more complex metadata and data relationships.

  11. The Cape Observatory: all Categories of Heritage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glass, Ian S.

    2012-09-01

    In this presentation I will give an outline of the various types of heritage related to the Royal Observatory, Cape of Good Hope, established in 1820 and now the headquarters campus of the South African Astronomical Observatory, located quite close to downtown Cape Town. In terms of tangible, fixed heritage, the campus itself, the domes and the various other buildings are obviously relevant. This category includes the Classical Revival Main Building of 1828 and the McClean dome of 1895 by the leading colonial architect Herbert Baker as well as many other buildings and even the graves of two directors. Tangible movable items include, in principle, the telescopes, the accessory instruments and many pieces of apparatus that have been preserved. In addition, extensive collections of antique paintings, drawings, furniture and books add to the site's cultural significance. Many of the Observatory's archives are still kept locally. The intangible heritage of the Observatory consists for example of its history, its major discoveries, its interaction with the City, its central role in the history of science in South Africa and its appeal as a living cultural institution. Especially notable were the observations by Henderson (ca 1831) leading to the distance of a Cen and the early sky survey known as the Cape Photographic Durchmusterung.

  12. Education and public engagement in observatory operations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gabor, Pavel; Mayo, Louis; Zaritsky, Dennis

    2016-07-01

    Education and public engagement (EPE) is an essential part of astronomy's mission. New technologies, remote observing and robotic facilities are opening new possibilities for EPE. A number of projects (e.g., Telescopes In Education, MicroObservatory, Goldstone Apple Valley Radio Telescope and UNC's Skynet) have developed new infrastructure, a number of observatories (e.g., University of Arizona's "full-engagement initiative" towards its astronomy majors, Vatican Observatory's collaboration with high-schools) have dedicated their resources to practical instruction and EPE. Some of the facilities are purpose built, others are legacy telescopes upgraded for remote or automated observing. Networking among institutions is most beneficial for EPE, and its implementation ranges from informal agreements between colleagues to advanced software packages with web interfaces. The deliverables range from reduced data to time and hands-on instruction while operating a telescope. EPE represents a set of tasks and challenges which is distinct from research applications of the new astronomical facilities and operation modes. In this paper we examine the experience with several EPE projects, and some lessons and challenges for observatory operation.

  13. SOFIA: Stratospheric Observatory For Infrared Astronomy

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kunz, Nans; Bowers, Al

    2007-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation reviews the great astronomical observatories both space and land based that are now operational. It shows the history of the development of SOFIA, from its conception in 1986 through the contract awards in 1996 and through the planned first flight in 2007. The major components of the observatory are shown and there is a comparison of the SOFIA with the Kuiper Airborne Observatory (KAO), which is the direct predecessor to SOFIA. The development of the aft ramp of the KAO was developed as a result of the wind tunnel tests performed for SOFIA development. Further slides show the airborne observatory layout and the telescope's optical layout. Included are also vies of the 2.5 Meter effective aperture, and the major telescope's components. The presentations reviews the technical challenges encountered during the development of SOFIA. There are also slides that review the wind tunnel tests, and CFD modeling performed during the development of SOFIA. Closing views show many views of the airplane, and views of SOFIA.

  14. Powerful Radio Burst Indicates New Astronomical Phenomenon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2007-09-01

    Astronomers studying archival data from an Australian radio telescope have discovered a powerful, short-lived burst of radio waves that they say indicates an entirely new type of astronomical phenomenon. Region of Strong Radio Burst Visible-light (negative greyscale) and radio (contours) image of Small Magellanic Cloud and area where burst originated. CREDIT: Lorimer et al., NRAO/AUI/NSF Click on image for high-resolution file ( 114 KB) "This burst appears to have originated from the distant Universe and may have been produced by an exotic event such as the collision of two neutron stars or the death throes of an evaporating black hole," said Duncan Lorimer, Assistant Professor of Physics at West Virginia University (WVU) and the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO). The research team led by Lorimer consists of Matthew Bailes of Swinburne University in Australia, Maura McLaughlin of WVU and NRAO, David Narkevic of WVU, and Fronefield Crawford of Franklin and Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. The astronomers announced their findings in the September 27 issue of the online journal Science Express. The startling discovery came as WVU undergraduate student David Narkevic re-analyzed data from observations of the Small Magellanic Cloud made by the 210-foot Parkes radio telescope in Australia. The data came from a survey of the Magellanic Clouds that included 480 hours of observations. "This survey had sought to discover new pulsars, and the data already had been searched for the type of pulsating signals they produce," Lorimer said. "We re-examined the data, looking for bursts that, unlike the usual ones from pulsars, are not periodic," he added. The survey had covered the Magellanic Clouds, a pair of small galaxies in orbit around our own Milky Way Galaxy. Some 200,000 light-years from Earth, the Magellanic Clouds are prominent features in the Southern sky. Ironically, the new discovery is not part of these galaxies, but rather is much more distant

  15. Virtual Observatory Services at WFAU

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holliman, M.; Read, M.; Hambly, N.; Mann, R. G.

    2010-12-01

    The Wide Field Astronomy Unit hosts a large number of Virtual Observatory (VO) services that enable access to both data and processing applications housed on our servers in Edinburgh. These services provide astronomers with a powerful set of tools for obtaining and processing data in ways unattainable through conventional access methods. The services offered include cone search and ADQL access to a number of major databases developed by our data centre such as UKIDSS, SuperCOSMOS Science Archive, and the 6dF Galaxy Survey, and also many mirrors of important databases developed elsewhere, such as SDSS, IRAS, and 2XMM. Images for UKIDSS and SuperCOSMOS are accessible through SIA services. There are useful data processing tools like the STILTS library for table manipulation, a data mining tool for classification using kernel density analysis, and a service for converting VOTables into KML for use in Google Sky. Also hosted are a number of VO infrastructure services like a full registry and VOSpace that enable users to find resources and store data in an online accessible location. WFAU provides secured VO services to the proprietary UKIDSS releases, which are the first secured VO services for a major proprietary data resource in the entire VO. With a limited knowledge of python and a copy of the VODesktop software astronomers can script up workflows that utilize these services to perform complex operations like cross matching between disparate datasets or extracting catalogues from images remotely. Since many of our databases are too large to be downloaded and accessed locally these services make it possible to accomplish complicated tasks online and on dedicated hardware. WFAU’s list of VO services will continue to grow as new IVOA standards are implemented and with the addition of new datasets like the VISTA surveys.

  16. Leslie Peltier, Amateur Astronomer and Observer Extraordinaire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Corbin, B. G.

    2003-12-01

    Leslie Copus Peltier, (Jan. 2, 1900-May 10, 1980) was called "the world's greatest non-professional astronomer" by none other than Harlow Shapley, and also referred to as the "the world's greatest living amateur astronomer". He began observing variable stars on March 1, 1918 with an observation of R. Leonis and at the time of his death had made a total of 132,123 observations of variable stars. These were reported to the AAVSO on a consecutive monthly basis stretching from 1918 to his death in 1980. As of October 2003, he was still on AAVSO's list of the top 25 observers in its history. Born on a farm near Delphos, Ohio, his parents were well read and their home was filled with books on different subjects, including nature guides. As a young man he studied the flora and fauna of the area and in 1915 began his study of the heavens with Vega being the first star he identified. After the purchase of a 2-inch spyglass, his observations of variable stars began to be noticed by professional astronomers and the AAVSO loaned him a 4-inch Mogey refractor; shortly thereafter Henry Norris Russell of Princeton loaned him via the AAVSO a 6-inch refractor, a comet seeker of short focus. He discovered 12 comets, 10 of which carry his name, and 6 novae or recurring novae. His design of the "Merry-Go-Round Observatory" was a novel approach with the whole observatory revolving around the observer while seated in his observing chair. Miami University (Ohio) later donated to him their 12-inch Clark refractor with its dome. His first book, Starlight Nights: The Adventures of a Star-Gazer, appeared in 1965. This autobiography, an ode to the joys of observing both the night sky and nature, was written in beautifully descriptive language that helped lead countless readers into astronomy. Departing from astronomy, in 1977 he published The Place on Jennings Creek. Written in the style of the 19th century naturalist, the book was devoted to his family's home, Brookhaven, and its natural

  17. A Mythological, Philosophical and Astronomical approach of our solar system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Drivas, Sotirios; Kastanidou, Sofia

    2016-04-01

    Teaching Geography in the first Class of Gymnasium - secondary education we will focus in Solar System: Astronomical approach: Students will look and find the astronomical data of the planets, they will make comparisons between the sizes of their radius, they will find the distance from the Sun, they will search the relative motion, they will calculate the gravity on each planet, etc. Mythological approach: We will search the names and meanings of the planets based on Greek mythological origin. Philosophical approach: Regarding the philosophical approach of the "solar system" we will look and find: • Why planets are called so? • How did planets get their names? • What are the periods of Greek astronomy? • What were the astronomical instruments of ancient Greeks and who did built them? • What were the Greek philosophers and astronomers? When did they live and what did they discover? • Which method did Eratosthenes of Cyrene apply about 206B.C. to serve a real measurement of the earth's radius? • What was the relationship between science and religion in ancient Greece? Literature approach: At the end of the program students will write their opinion in subject "Having a friend from another planet" based on the book of Antoine de Saint - Exupéry "The little prince". Law approach: A jurist working in Secondary Education will visits our school and engages students in the Space Law. Artistic approach: Students will create their own posters of our planetary system. The best posters will be posted on the school bulletin board to display their work. Visit: Students and teachers will visit the Observatory of Larissa where they will see how observatory works and talk with scientists about their job. They will look through telescopes and observe the sun.

  18. "Microquasar" Discoveries Win Prize for Astronomers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    The discovery of "microquasars" within our own Milky Way Galaxy has won two astronomers a prize from the High Energy Astrophysics Division of the American Astronomical Society. Felix Mirabel of the Center for Studies at Saclay, France, and Luis Rodriguez of the Institute of Astronomy at the National Autonomous University in Mexico City, were awarded the Bruno Rossi Prize at the American Astronomical Society meeting in Toronto, Ontario, today. The two researchers, who have collaborated for more than 15 years, used an orbiting X-Ray observatory and the National Science Foundation's Very Large Array (VLA) radio telescope to discover the extremely energetic microquasars. Microquasars are thought to be binary-star systems with one of the stars either a superdense neutron star or a black hole. They emit X-rays and eject jets of subatomic particles at speeds approaching that of light. Though the neutron stars or black holes in microquasars are only a few times the mass of the sun, the phenomena associated with them, such as the jets, are similar to those seen in active galaxies and quasars, believed to be powered by the gravitational energy of black holes with millions of times the mass of the sun. As such, the microquasars provide much closer "laboratories" for study of these phenomena, which remain poorly understood. The Rossi Prize is awarded for "a significant contribution to high energy astrophysics, with particular emphasis on recent work," according to the High Energy Astrophysics Division. Mirabel and Rodriguez began the research that led to the microquasar discoveries in 1990. Using the French-Russian SIGMA- GRANAT X-Ray satellite, they discovered a microquasar near the Milky Way's center in 1992. With the VLA, they found radio emission from this object. In 1992, using the same satellite, they discovered a similar object, called GRS 1915+105. In 1994, that object experienced an outburst that made it bright enough at radio wavelengths to observe with the VLA

  19. Radio protection zone evaluation at the Dominion Radio Astrophysical Observatory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tapping, Ken

    Increasing use of the radio spectrum by licensed and unlicensed devices, together with the encroachment of housing developments are an issue facing many radio observatories, including the Dominion Radio Astrophysical Observatory (DRAO), located near Penticton in Southern British Columbia. A joint study by Industry Canada (Canada's national spectrum manager), and the National Research Council (Operator of DRAO) is currently in progress to examine protection zone needs and the reliability of the definitions of the zone, and the general level of background noise from growing local communities. The objectives are to produce a definition of a protection zone that is useful in spectrum management to protect the observatory, and to establish how much local community development is acceptable if the observatory is to remain a viable location for radio astronomical observations. This presentation will summarize the results so far in this ongoing study.

  20. A mountain observatory and the Brazilian Astrophysics Project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Machado, Cristina de Amorim; Videira, Antonio A. P.

    2015-11-01

    The Brazilian astrophysics project is intimately linked to a scientific institution that came into existence in the 1980s: the National Astrophysics Laboratory. Responsible for enabling the development of Brazilian research in this area, its history dates back to a dream to build an observatory on a mountaintop conceived at an institution formed in the nineteenth century, the Imperial Observatory of Rio de Janeiro, later the National Observatory. It is a story of national and international scientific cooperation, especially in the second half of the twentieth century. This paper tells the story of this dream and how it was transformed into reality in 1980s with the installation of what was then called the Brazilian Astrophysics Observatory, heralding a new era for astronomical research in Brazil.