Mt. Kent Observatory Data Requests




Use an ID from your class if you have one. We may contact you using your preferred email address.

The target identification should be a catalog name and number that provides coordinates for us to identify and locate your request. However, if it is a planet or satellite, simply the name will do.

If you add a description of the target, for example "Spiral galaxy" or "Star cluster" it will help us sort out what you are looking for.

Use ephemeris software such as Stellarium to confirm that your target is visible now, and to find approximately what time of night it is up. If there is something that is time-critical, identify this in the date field, and make a comment about it. Observations are more readily scheduled if there are no constraints on date and time, but very faint diffuse objects such as galaxies and nebulae are best studied when there is no Moon up.

Select a telescope appropriate for your request. We may change this choice depending on what is available, and where in the sky your target is located.

Select an appropriate exposure time based on the magnitude guidance or on your knowledge of the requirements for your work. Typically exposures longer than 100 seconds should be taken by adding up separate exposures of 100 seconds each. For these, set the exposure at 100 seconds, and the number as the number of images you want to add or study separately.

A "Science" image is one that shows you the object, while "Dark" images are ones where the shutter is closed and you see only the camera's response. A "Bias" image is a very short exposure to identify what no signal at all means on the image. A "Flat" is an exposure of a uniform field used to calibrate the camera. We usually have many Dark, Bias, and Flat frames already available and we will use them unless you request otherwise.

You may add a short comment to help us understand what you want to study or measure. You may later update the comment with additional text, or completely remove an entry. Once entered, you cannot otherwise edit an entry, but you can delete it and enter another one.

Press "Submit" to put your request into the system. "Sort" and "Unsort" will show you different ordered listings of your requests. Most users can only see, add comments to, or delete their own requests.

The "Clouds" button will show you the latest satellite view of Earth.



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