Fred Lawrence Whipple Observatory

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The Fred Lawrence Whipple Observatory is an astronomical observatory owned by the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory ; it is its largest outpost and is located near Amado, Arizona on the hills of Mount Hopkins . It was founded in 1968.


One of the 12 m VERITAS telescopes

The observatory houses the MMT observatory , which is operated together with the University of Arizona and houses a reflecting telescope with a diameter of 6.5 m.

Other telescopes are

  • a 1.5 m reflector telescope,
  • a 1.2 m reflecting telescope,
  • as well as a 1.3 m reflecting telescope.

The latter is called PAIRITEL (Peters Automated IR Imaging Telescope), which was originally used for the Two Micron All Sky Survey (2MASS).

The Infrared optical telescope array (IOTA), which is used by many institutes, and the Hungarian Automated Telescope (HAT) are also located on the site .

The observatory has achieved particular fame in the study of astronomical high-energy gamma radiation , for example in 1984 with the development of an imaging Cherenkov telescope (Imaging Atmospheric Cherenkov Telescope, IACT).

Four kilometers to the east is the Very Energetic Radiation Imaging Telescope Array System (VERITAS), a gamma radiation observatory consisting of four 12 m telescopes ( 31 ° 40 ′ 30.2 ″  N , 110 ° 57 ′ 7.8 ″  W ).

Web links

Coordinates: 31 ° 40 ′ 52 "  N , 110 ° 52 ′ 42"  W.