SSRO-N @ New Mexico Skies
Star Shadows Remote Observatory (SSRO) North is owned and operated by Lewis Garrett, Jacob Gerritsen, Michael Smith, and Teri Smoot. The SSRO telescopes are located at New Mexico Skies, an astronomy inn run by Mike and Lynn Rice near Mayhill, NM (Lat 32 54' 14" N, Long. 105 31' 44" W, elevation 7300 feet). The skies there are so dark that sometimes the shadow of the Milky Way can be clearly seen -- hence the name for our observatory.
SSRO North is fully equipped with an excellent RCOS Carbon Truss 16" Ritchey-Chretien telescope and an SBIG STL11000M. Mounted on top of the big telescope is a Takahashi FSQ106N with another SBIG STL11000M for wide field imaging. Both telescopes are mounted on a Bisque Paramount ME 4000 and all the filters are by AstroDon. The telescopes are operated remotely via the internet using products from Software Bisque, Diffraction Limited and CCDWare.
SSRO-S / PROMPT @ CTIO, Chile
Star Shadows Remote Observatory SSRO South is operated by Jack Harvey, Warren Keller, Steve Menaker, and Steve Mazlin as a joint venture with Dr. Daniel Reichart of the Department of Astronomy and Physics, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and SkyNet. The SSRO South telescope is PROMPT2 located at Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory, located about 80 km east of La Serena, Chile (Lat 30 10' 03.39" S, Long. 70 48' 19.42" W, elevation 2161 meters). The skies here are magnitude 21.6 by our measurement, and the CTIO seeing monitor not infrequently records seeing around 0.5 arc seconds for prolonged periods of time. [ Follow us on FaceBook at SSRO: Star Shadows Remote Observatory]
The SSRO South telescope is one of five PROMPT telescopes designed to analyze gamma ray bursts in the southern hemisphere. PROMPT2 was modified in December of 2006 by teams from SSRO and UNC to allow for wide and narrow band imaging. SSRO South is fully equipped with an excellent RCOS Open Truss 16" Ritchey-Chretien telescope and an Apogee U9 imaging camera and an SBIG 402 camera for guiding. The telescope is mounted on a Planewave 200HR mount. The 10 slot filter wheel contains Astrodon wide and narrow band filters as well as science filters used to chase and analyze gamma ray bursts. The telescope is operated remotely via the internet using products from Software Bisque, and Diffraction Limited. The mission for SSRO-S/PROMPT2 is to allow for wide and narrow band imaging by SSRO-S team members as well as allowing some outreach on the SkyNet program. Priority tasking for gamma ray burst analysis remains intact. For a live PROMPT webcam view, click here.
The skies here are unbelievable as evidenced by this seeing monitor graph above showing steady 0.5 arc sec readings.
Many SSRO South images are also posted on the NOAO Image Gallery
Note: site parametrs for CTIO are: