10 Years of the Armagh Robotic Telescope (ART) – Astronotes

There have been many memorable moments. Within the early days, when the dome arrived, the entire college students got here out to assist unpack the transport container, carry the items up the hill, and assist assemble them. It was one other Herculean workforce effort to hoist the telescope tube onto its mount.

For me, who began his profession as a theoretician, and solely later learnt the way to observe, the official opening was a proud second. Jack Wright had set issues up in order that the Minister’s consultant – Alastair Hughes – might open and rotate the dome and slew the telescope on the contact of a single button. BBC journalist Gordon Adair made an excellent movie of the dome and telescope slewing within the night Solar.

On one other event it was a privilege to take President Michael D. Higgins  and Sabina Higgins into the dome and present them the telescope. They’re actually beautiful folks!

Nonetheless, my favorite reminiscence was one lengthy clear run after I was capable of function the telescope from house. We have been monitoring oscillations in a variable star and observations began within the early night. I needed to reverse the telescope round midnight, realigned the star on the goal, and went to mattress for night time’s sleep. Within the morning, the dome was all properly closed, the telescope parked, and the information all prepared for evaluation. Hopefully, I and others will be capable to do that extra usually sooner or later.

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