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SAC Seminar - Tim Brown: Las Cumbres Observatory: The Network Comes Alive!

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fredag 14. november 2014,  kl. 10:15 - 11:00



Las Cumbres Observatory Global Telescope is an observatory headquartered in Goleta CA, with ties to UC Santa Barbara, created in 2005 to pursue studies in time-domain optical astronomy.  "Time domain astronomy" covers many subfields, ranging from near-Earth asteroids to supernovae/cosmology.  What
these specialties have in common is the need to observe their targets at will, anywhere in the sky, any time (and in some cases, all the time).  Traditional ground-based observatories and scheduling models are a poor fit to this kind of observing.  LCOGT is responding to this disconnect by building a coordinated world-wide network of robotic telescope clusters, designed and instrumented to attack the most critical issues in the time domain.  Since mid-2012, six years of development work have suddenly condensed into working telescopes and instruments: two spectrographs on our original 2m telescopes, nine new 1-meter telescopes in Texas, Chile, South Africa, and Australia, six cross-dispersed echelle spectrographs under construction, and possible further expansion in the works.  In this talk, I will first describe the science goals of LCOGT illustrated with recent results), and then lead you on a tour of our newly-expanded facilities for achieving these goals.