It has been three months since we opened our site at Siding Spring and it has been an eventful three months. The good news is the site is now fully up, running and 100% operational. With that being said, we are now ready to begin hosting at iTelescope: Siding Spring.
So, with that in mind, we would like to formally introduce hosting.itelescope.net. hosting.itelescope.net is a new website dedicated in full to iTelescope Hosting Services. It includes all of the information about the Siding Spring site and Observatory, weather, and the different types of hosting that we offer, including our affiliate program.
We have a limited number of spaces for hosting telescope systems at the new observatory and we want to give you the opportunity to join us. I am sure that you have some questions so please read on and discover how simple and fulfilling hosting a system can be!
What is Hosting?
Hosting is a service iTelescope.Net offers that will allow you to host a private, remote telescope at our Siding Spring Observatory Site for a monthly fee.
It allows you the freedom of being able to use a system on our network at your convenience, without having to worry about other member's reservation times. It gives you access to the pristine, dark, and clean Australian skies, and grants full access to the wonders of the Southern Hemisphere.
It gives you access to the experienced and talented staff of iTelescope.Net for system selection, setup, monitoring and maintenance. It gives you security, ground support, and safety for your equipment.
It gives you all of these things and it gives them to you in a Complete "Turn Key" Solution.
"Turn Key" Solution
At iTelescope.Net, we try to make Hosting as easy as possible by offering Turn Key Solutions. What this means is that from start to finish, iTelescope will take care of all of the many details that are involved in getting started with a new remote telescope system. From the moment you contact us, we will begin tailoring a system to your specific needs.
We will consult with you to ensure that the system you have is the system you need. We will model the estimate and quotation for your system. We will order all needed parts, adapters, filters, etc. needed to have an operational remote telescope. We will receive and install your system, and bring the software online. We will calibrate your system, and ensure it is in working order, and then we will hand you the "keys".
iTelescope: Siding Spring
The iTelescope SSO Observatory is a cutting edge structure with room for over a dozen large aperture remote telescopes. Construction was completed in January 2013. It has:
High speed Microwave
Fiber Optic Internet
High Speed FTP Data Transport
Automated Roll Off Roof
Online Weather & Sky Monitoring
Wireless Wi-Fi Telescope Networking
Davis WX & Boltwood II Sensors
Average of 70% Usable Skies Per Month
Protected Dark Sky Environment
Enforced 24/7 Security
Moderate Climate (1.5 - 2.5 arc-sec)
High resolution Color SkyCam
Cool, Clean & Dust Free Environment
Comprehensive Surge Protection
Mains Power Backup Generators
On Site Support with Local Workshops
Premier Elevation - 1134m amsl
Inclusion within a truly Professional Astronomy Community
We operate in a partnership with the ANU Research School of Astrophysics and Astronomy.
The SSO location is home to a growing number of iTelescope platforms. All connected to our high speed network & available to the world's online astronomy community.
We also provide:
Control Software Integration
Precision Polar Alignment
Collimation and Optical tuning
Regular Proactive Maintenance
On Site Ground Crew
'Turn Key' Telescope Solutions
Security & Peace of Mind
Best Practice Management
For more information on iTelescope Hosting, please visit our hosting website or send an email over to email@example.com. If you already own a system, part of a system, or if you know what kind of system you would like, please include it in the email so we can better serve you.
Surplus iTelescopes For Sale
In order to make room for all of our new telescopes at the Siding Spring Observatory, we are going to be selling a couple of our iTelescopes at a highly reduced price! The two that will be available for purchase are our former T1 and T15.
T1 has both the Telescope and the Mount for sale at very competitive pricing. T1 is a Takahashi Mewlon 300; A reflector with exceptional and powerful optics, a generous diameter, and with the guarantee of an incredible contrast.
A Cassegrain reflector based on the superb Dall Kirkham optical design, this reflector with its excellent
optical qualities can be used in a wide range of applications and excels in all aspects and was a reliable part of iTelescope New Mexico for several years and will make a great addition to your home observatory.
Recently, this OTA has been upgraded to the fiber tube and including a flattener which provides a full use of 50mm flat field. It also now contains a 0.73x Wide Field adapter, increasing the FOV to the new configuration of 2190mm FL @ F7.3. It also comes with the Allos computer controlled focuser.
The specifications for T1 are:
Optical design: Dall-Kirkham (Cassegrain)
Effective aperture: 300mm
Primary mirror diameter (focal length): 310mm (F/3)
Secondary mirror diameter (amplification): 95mm (x4)
Secondary obstruction: 0,32
Focal length (at prime focus): 2190mm
Focal ratio (at prime focus): F/7.3
Limiting magnitude: 14,2
Light grasp: 1836x
Image circle: 25mm
Back focus: 210mm
Eyepiece holder(s): 50,8mm/31,75mm
The Mount for T1 is a Paramount GT-1100S with Byers Gears. This mount was the precursor of the Paramout ME mounts that are considered some of the best in the business. The GT-1100S was one of the first mounts ever created by software bisque and is a testament to their skill.
The Edward R. Byers Worm Gears are a nice addition to this system. For more than four decades Edward R. Byers Co., manufactured astronomical equipment for observatories, colleges, universities, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Lockheed Martin and other clients.
Byers had a worldwide reputation for precision machining and high quality tracking telescope mounts. Its worm gear drives are among the most accurate ever created for astronomy. The accuracy of these gears is especially noticeable during long exposure astrophotography. Periodic error is almost nonexistent. The exceptional accuracy was achieved by Byers' precision machining and the design of the gears.
We also have a filter wheel wheel available for this system. The Optec Intelligent Filter Wheel (IFW) brings astronomy to a new level of sophistication by determining the identification of a particular wheel and apply that wheel ID to a pre-programmed set of filters. The names, not just position numbers of these filters, are displayed on the eight character display and are also available with CCD camera operating software.
It is a 5 position filter wheel and contain 3, 6" filer wheels and all filters needed for Color Imaging, Photometry, and Narrow band imaging.
This system is available piece by piece, or as a single unit and it also has the option of being hosted at our Siding Spring Observatory Site.
For more information about hosting, please check our hosting web site here
. For information on pricing, or if you have any questions about the system, please feel free to contact Aron:
Here for T1 Sale Information
T15 has the telescope, rings, and focuser for sale. The mount is not for sale. This deluxe sky machine is in excellent condition and ready to ship to your observatory. The telescope is the 16" Astro Systeme Austria Astrograph - (ASA16N-OK3 f 3,6).
The astrograph of the N-Series have a corrected Wynne corrector with the aperture ratio of f3.6, but they can be converted to a shorter or longer focal length with a few simple steps:
2" Barlow corrector: Focal ratio of f 6.8
3 "Reducer corrector: focal ratio of f 2.75
This means that you have on request a telescope with three different focal lengths.
The Specifications of this Telescope are:
Focal length: 1440mm
Image circle: 50mm
For information on pricing, or if you have any questions about the system, please feel free to contact Aron:
Here for T15 Sale Information
Tools of the Trade: Stellarium
Stellarium is a fantastic, free tool that can be used to assist you in many things when it comes to imaging the night sky. It is a virtual 3D sky simulator that can be used to determine the location of objects at a specific time and date, show you new targets you may not know about, assist with choosing targets during the full moon (so you can take advantage of Moon Discount), and so much more.
For more information on Stellarium, as well as download links, check out their web site here
We also have Video Tutorials
covering the set up and use of Stellarium.
OSIRIS-REx: Target Asteroids! Update
It has been a year now since the OSIRIS-REx Target Asteroids! program began, and in that year there have been many observations received. During the most recent quarter (Dec 2012 to March 2013) the following members submitted observations:
(1197) Rodesia - Henrichs
(4179) Toutatis - Wiggins
(7888) 1993 UC - Tomassini
(163249) 2002 GT - Nissinen
2007 CN26 - Fitzgerald
2012 DA14 - Lake, Lind
2012 TF53 - Nissinen
2012 XS93 - Trueblood
2012 XD112 - Trueblood
Photometric data on the following asteroids were collected from the VATT 1.8-m as well:
(24) Themis, (7350) 1993 VA, (7888) 1993 UC,
(68278) 2001 FC7, (136793) 1997 AQ18, (163249) 2002 GT, 2000 EA14,
2006 YF, 2007 CN26, 2012 DA14, 2012 XS93, 2012 XD112.
With the first quarter of 2013 over, the second Quarter is about to begin, and this quarter we have the opportunity to observe eight Target Asteroids! list objects and eight additional analogous asteroids brighter than magnitude 20. The full list of targets for this quarter can be found here
This quarter's highlights includes:
(163249) 2002 GT --- This object is not just a potential spacecraft
targets, it is a spacecraft targets. NASA's Deep Impact/EPOXI
spacecraft will fly-by 2002 GT in 2020. This year marks the last
opportunity to characterize this object before the fly-by. Currently
little is known about this object. Any and all photometry and
astrometry is requested. It will peak at magnitude 16.3 in early June
though observations throughout the quarter are desired.
(163364) 2002 OD20 --- This potential spacecraft targets will peak at
magnitude 13.9 in late May. It is another object which we know very
little about. Again any and all photometry and astrometry is
2009 SQ104 --- Not to sound like a broken record but this is yet
another potential spacecraft targets with little known about it. It
peaks at magnitude 17.3 in late April/early May.
(223) Rosa, (578) Happelia and (1439) Vogtia --- These large Main Belt
asteroids are all known to be carbonaceous. (1439) Vogtia appears to
be the same spectral class as the OSIRIS-REx target, 1999 RQ36. By
obtaining photometry at different phase angles we can better model
RQ36's light scattering properties at very small phase angles. Rosa
peaks at magnitude 13.9 and Happelia peaks at magnitude 12.4 in late
April. Vogtia is a bit fainter with a peak at magnitude 15.9 in
(285263) 1998 QE2 --- This dark carbonaceous near-Earth asteroid is an
analog to the RQ36. It will reach a relatively bright magnitude 10.6
on June 2/3 as it passes within 0.04 AU of Earth. Photometry at a
large range of phase angles is desired.
(7753) 1988 XB, (7888) 1993 UC, (242643) 2005 NZ6, 1988 TA --- All of
these analog near-Earth asteroids will peak between magnitudes 14.4
and 16.6 this quarter.
You can find the entire list of targets here
The OSIRIS-REx Target Asteroids! project staff have also begun work on two papers that will present a summary of the first year of the program. The first paper will present phase function curves for the Target Asteroids! list objects while the second will focus on the 2012 QG42 close fly-by of Earth that took place in September.
All members who contributed data on the objects included in these papers will be listed as co-authors.
For more information on the OSIRIS-REx Target Asteroids! project, check out their main web page here
Let's have a great second quarter!