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Goddard Space Flight
													      Center Sonoma State University
													  Education and Public

GORT: The GLAST Optical Robotic Telescope

GTN Name
GTN Number

Hume Observatory; east of Windsor, CA

Longitude 122o 41' 13.8'' W
Latitude 38o 33' 55'' N
Elevation 1099 ft = 335 m

Observatory Home
GORT Information Page - This site has information about the telescope, its location, operation of the observatory, the schedule of observers, and the weather forecast for the observatory site.
Observatory Description

GORT (GLAST Optical Robotic Telescope) is a small ground-based telescope designed to support several NASA high-energy space observatories. These observatories operate in the gamma ray and X-ray region of the electromagnetic spectrum. GORT is used primarily to obtain synoptic multiwavelength surveillance data for objects being observed by the space observatories. The space observatories include the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope (formerly the Gamma-ray Large Area Space Telescope, or GLAST), Swift, and XMM-Newton. The objects to be observed include blazars, GRBs, and polars.

In addition to supporting the science objectives for these missions, GORT will also support the Education and Public Outreach (E/PO) objectives for these missions. GORT is available for use by students and educators who wish to directly contribute to significant science projects by obtaining and analyzing image data.

GORT is part of the GTN (Global Telescope Network). This is a network of small and moderate size telescopes whose operators are interested in contributing to the science and education goals of NASA space observatories. The GTN consists of students, educators, amateur astronomers, and professional astronomers. The GTN has an observing list of program objects that will be monitored by the network. The GTN website also contains information about the nature of the objects being monitored as well as recommendations and advice for obtaining and reducing image data.

GORT is also connected to the Skynet network of robotic telescopes managed by the Dan Reichart Group at the University of North Carolina. Skynet allows for sharing of telescope time between collaborators. It greatly expands the observing opportunities of participants by giving sky access during times of bad weather and in both Northern and Southern Hemispheres.

GORT is available for use by schools; contact the GTN director (email at the bottom of this page) for information. GORT is also available for use by members and participants of the GTN and Skynet. Other individuals or groups interested in using GORT should first request to join the GTN.

GORT has been developed and is managed by the NASA E/PO group at Sonoma State University (SSU).

To view the current observing schedule for GORT please visit the GORT calendar.


Images of the Observatory (click to enlarge)

dome telescope

Images taken by the Observatory telescope

checkmark observe GTN program objects
checkmark chase after GRBs and their afterglows
checkmark reduce and analyze magnitude data for blazars, polars, GRBs
checkmark monitor and report current blazar and/or polar activity
checkmark offer telescope time to other GTN participants
checkmark mentor other GTN participants in observing and data analysis techniques
checkmark submit and/or collaborate on scientific papers related to GTN activities
checkmark adopt a blazar or polar
  a blazar or polar a month
checkmark a blazar or polar a week
checkmark microvariability campaigns
checkmark submit quick look magnitudes for blazars and polars to the AAVSO International Database
checkmark submit reports of imaging GRB fields to the AAVSO or to the GCN
checkmark submit images to the GTN image archive
Kevin McLin, Lynn Cominsky
mclin at universe dot sonoma dot edu
Postal Address
Dr. Kevin M. McLin
NASA E/PO Program
Schulz Information Center
Sonoma State University
Rohnert Park, CA 94928
Observatory and Equipment Details
Observatory Enclosure: CCD:
Astrohaven Dome Apogee AP47
Telescope: CCD control software:
C14 Maxim
Telescope Mount: Data reduction software:
Paramount ME APT, ImageJ, Maxim, IRAF
Telescope control software:  
TheSky, Maxim, ACP  

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If you have a question about the GTN, please contact one of the "Responsible SSU Personnel" below.

This page was last modified on Tuesday 23rd April 2013 @ 11:29am

Science Mission Directorate Universe Division

Responsible SSU Personnel:

Dr. Kevin McLin (mclin at universe dot sonoma dot edu)

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