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iTelescope.Net is the world’s premier network of Internet connected telescopes, allowing members to take astronomical images of the night sky for the purposes of education, scientific research and astrophotography. (more)

iTelescope.Net is a self-funding, not for profit membership organisation; we exist to benefit our members and the astronomy community. Financial proceeds fund the expansion and growth of the network. iTelescope.Net is run by astronomers for astronomers.

The network is open to the public; anyone can join and become a member including students, amateurs and even professional astronomers.

With 20 telescopes, and observatories located in New Mexico, Australia and Spain, observers are able to follow the night sky around the globe 24x7.

iTelescope.Net puts professional telescopes within the reach of all, with systems ranging from single shot colour telescopes to 700mm (27”) research grade telescopes.

Astronomy Research

Having access to professional telescopes means that doing real science has never been easier – great value for schools, educators, universities, amateur and professional astronomers. (more)

Exo-planets, comets, supernova, quasars, asteroids, binary stars, minor planets, near earth objects and variable stars can all be studied. iTelescope.Net can also send your data directly to AAVSO VPhot server for real-time online photometric analysis.

iTelescope.Net allows you to respond quickly to real-time astronomical phenomena such as supernova and outbursts events, gaining a competitive edge for discoveries. With more than 240 asteroid discoveries iTelescope.Net is ranked within the top 50 observatories in the world by the Minor Planet Center.

Get involved: members have used the network to provide supportive data for go/no-go decisions on Hubble space telescope missions.

Education and Astronomy Schools

With science and numeracy at the forefront of the education revolution, iTelescope.Net provides the tools, along with research and education grants, to support the development of astronomy or science based curriculums in schools. Contact iTelescope.Net about a grant for your school or research project. (more)

Professional observatories use iTelescope.Net to supplement current research projects. The network provides alternate observatory sites in both southern and northern hemispheres and is a good way to continue research when seasonal poor weather hits your observatory.

Sky Tours Live Streams

We offer a variety of ways to view the night sky, including our entry level Sky Tours Live Streams. These weekly streams, hosted by Dr. Christian Sasse, are a great way to get started with Remote Astronomy, allowing you to see our telescopes in action and learn about the Night Sky from a professional Astronomer.

Astrophotography

Take stunning images of the night sky, galaxies, comets and nebula. Have access to the best equipment from the comfort of your computer and without the huge financial and time commitments. (more)

The network has everything from beginner telescopes with single shot colour CCDs to large format CCDs with Ha, SII and OII and LRGB filter sets. Check out the member image gallery – the results speak for themselves.

Depending on your own image processing skills, you can even land yourself a NASA APOD.

How?

All you need is a web browser and an Internet connection; iTelescope.Net takes care of the rest. Our web-based launchpad application provides the real-time status of each telescope on the network as well as a host of other information such as a day-night map, observatory all-sky cameras and weather details. (more)

From the launchpad you can login to any available telescope, and once connected, you’re in command. Watch in real time as the telescope slews, focuses and images your target.

The image files (in FITS format) are then transmitted to a high-speed server ready for your download. All image data taken is your data – iTelescope.Net doesn’t hold any intellectual property rights.

Reserve and schedule observing plans in advance, even have them run while you are away from iTelescope.Net and have the image data waiting for you ready for download.

New and Starting Out?

A number of telescopes are fitted with colour cameras; these systems have been designed for ease of use. It’s as simple as selecting an astronomical target from the menu, watching the telescope image your target, and have the resulting image sent to your email address as a jpeg attachment. (more)

The image file is also sent to our high-speed server and can be downloaded in its raw image format, for post image processing if you want more of a challenge.

Already a Pro?

iTelescope.Net offers a large range of telescopes, fields of view and image scales, and NABG and ABG CCD camera combinations. Select from a large range of filters including narrowband, LRGB and UBVRI, as well as control pointing, filter selection, focusing, exposure times, image counts, repeat loops etc. All data is offered in its raw FITS format calibrated and non-calibrated.

Support and Service

With remote astronomy observing plans can be interrupted from time to time, by clouds, wind gusts and even a rare equipment failure.

iTelescope.Net has you fully covered with our satisfaction guarantee; we will return your points if you are unsatisfied with your results. Help is just a click away. (more)

A dedicated team of professionals are working around the clock to keep the network operating. This includes local ground crews at each observatory, sophisticated monitoring systems and remote observatory administrators monitoring the quality of data coming off the network.

Our dedicated support website allows members to seek answers to frequently asked questions. Formal support can be requested by lodging a support ticket, which can be viewed, tracked and managed through to completion. Go to http://support.itelescope.net or simply email support@itelescope.net.

Our contact details are also available. You can phone or Skype us if you want to speak to a person directly; you can also contact us via Skype instant message, email and fax.

How much does this cost?

Rates vary based on your membership plan and the phase of the moon. Rates start as low as 17 to 100+ points per imaging hour, which is billed per minute of imaging time used; typically one point equals $1. Make sure you are subscribed to our newsletter for special offers. Please visit our pricing page for more information on telescope operating rates. (more)

Each telescope has its imaging hourly rate displayed in real time in the launchpad before you login. At the end of each session you are also sent a detailed usage receipt which includes the costs, weather data, preview jpeg images and your observing session log file.

Membership Plans

We have a range of plans catering for everyone from the amateur to the professional astronomer. Each plan provides unrestricted access to each telescope and includes the plan’s dollar value in points, which is credited to your account each time the membership renews. (more)

Membership plans set the usage rates for each telescope on the network, expressed in points per operating hour. The entry level plans provide maximum flexibility on our single shot colour systems, and the heavy usage plans focus more on the large research grade systems. Memberships start from $19.95 and range to $999.95 per 28 day period.

Additional points can be purchased at any time to supplement your account balance.

Hosting and Affiliates

iTelescope.Net offers a range of telescope hosting solutions to members with special projects, allowing you to host your own telescope at three of our four observatory locations. Conditions and approvals apply. Contact us for more information.(more)

Affiliate membership allows you to connect your own telescope to iTelescope.Net with reasonable rates of return. Limited availability exists and is subject to telescope network balance.

Please contact us for more information.


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T11 Science Spot 

 Pete Lake - iTelescope Affiliate

All, welcome to my little corner of the iTelescope.net Website, where I will be posting a little astro action and activities from my AARTScope Blog as well. Due to my association with iTelescope and through my blog, the Hubble Space telescope and ESO now follow me on twitter.

I regularly chase asteroids and work with Variable star observers so I'll keep you up to date on my activities.

Astronomy is a pursuit where everyone is so helpful and eager to share their knowledge, with the internet and a growing population of iTelescope.net users, its a great scene to be a part of. 

My AARTScope blog is where I do most of my writing and occasionally host the Carnival of Space. AARTScope's mission is to "help create the sense of anticipation and discovery that keeps scientists asking questions".

AARTScope is quite deliberately a blend of Art and Science which highlights the full capabilities of T-011, as its great for the best of astrophotography and has already done some stellar science (if you pardon the pun).

Some of my most popular articles have been the Hyabusa Re-entry live blogging session where over 300 visitors from Asia and around the world joined the live blogging session. Recently I also did a great article for the ESO on Paranal and the visit of the world's first electric supercar.

I have also done a couple of interviews on Astronomy.FM including one on Photometry as a cloud service. Yep you read that correctly, iTelescope.net is certainly on the cutting edge.

 


Wednesday
Jan222014

SuperNova Super Week!

Well its Supernova Week! There's science going off everwhere! Why watch endless hours of Sci-fi when you can watch stars blow up live! 
After last week's excitement of a nice Type IIn supernova in NGC 3448, there is breaking news tonight with a bright Supernova going off in M82. 
Image Credit: P.Lake H06 0.5m f/4.5 Planewave +CCD
As usual the iTelescope.net community has been involved in prompt follow up action with the on-demand telescopes swinging into action.

 

So what's going on and how does all this happen, what are the processes involved and how do Amateur Astronomer's make a contribution. All good questions!

Stars blowing up are more common that you think, whilst the mainstream media usually only pick up on a couple of Supernova's per year (usually the bright ones in well known galaxies), astronomers actually detect over 400 of them each year, which is more than one per day. Amateur Astronomers make a significant number of these discoveries, and several teams have developed advanced techniques, processes and team work to systematiclly go after these interesting events.

 

Leaders in this area amongst the amateur community are the BOSS team (Backyard Observatory Supernova Search) who have discovered 83 supernova, one of which has rocked the Astronomy community and resulted in the Hubble Space telescope being swung into action for follow up measurements. Also other regulars are a dedicated group of Japanese Astronomers who hardly miss a trick: Koichi Itagaki, Meineko Sakura, Seiichiro Kiota (and their teams - appologies for not mentioning everyone), do great work. On 14th Jan Mr Itagaki discovered a Supernova in NGC 3448. Well known amateur astronomer Patrick Wiggins also photographed it, independently, quite by chance, without a targeted search. I assisted Patrick with his follow-up images, and Patrick later found Mr Itagaki was awarded the discovery as he had an image from the night before.

 

Image Credit: P.Lake H06 0.5m f/4.5 Planewave +CCD

 

Many of these dedicated teams have advanced scripting techniques with systematic searches that can cover up to 200 galaxies per night. The 6 members of the BOSS team also leverage the time zones of New Zealand to east coast of Australia and west coast of Australia (6 Hours diff) to leverage their team capabilities, photographing, processing, researching and follow up. They have built strong partnerships with professional observatories that provide the spectral analysis, and pride themselves on having no-false positive reports. One other technique used by some amateurs for Nova and transient events is using a sophisticated DSLR camera on a tripod and subtracting images from night to night and comparing the difference.

 

Tonight's discovery of the supernova in M82 was reported to the Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams [CBAT] by S. J. Fossey and a class of students and was confirmed by Seiichiro Kiota, and followed up by the MASTER Team in Russia, and Leonid Elenin from the ISON Team. The MASTER team made 210 transient (includes supernova, nova) discoveries in 2013.
So what should I do, and how do I check, if I think I might have found a Supernova/Nova event in a galaxy I am photographing?

 

Step 1 - Re-photograph the area and check for asteroids and or artifacts in your image

 

Step 2 - Check a previous known image of the same area and compare to make sure nothing was there before. You need to be careful doing this as different images may have different orientations depending on the Position Angle of the camera. It may be flipped horizonal and vertically to your image. One such site where you can do this is the CDS (Centre de Données astronomiques de Strasbourg) Portal which has a searchable web interface for various star Catalogs (just enter the exact RA and Dec).

 

Step 3 - Once you believe you have something - alert some of your collegues and get some confirmation images

 

Step 4 - Report to CBAT  with the exact postion to the nearest arc-sec with an estimate of the magnitude and of course your location, telescope and discovery circumstances (eg PSN J09554214+6940260 where "Possible Super Nova" is RA is 09 55 42.14 and Dec +69 40 26.0).

 

Step 5 - Wait and hope you are the first in - but you'll have to be quick ;-) Its always a great idea to get someone to check your work so you avoid embarrassing mistakes.

 

Step 6 - Then sit back and wait for other astronomers with spectroscopic capabilities to confirm the Supernova type by assessing which Balmer Lines are present in the spectra.

 

So, even though you might not hear about every supernova, this is an area of constant research that creates great excitment through the thrill of the chase for amateur astronomers and professionals around the world.  

 

Saturday
Oct122013

International Observe the Moon Night - Star Party

 

So we are nearly off and running a bit late!

Hi folks is a lovely but slightly windy day in Melbourne.

At this stage it looks like its going to be a clear night. So I thought we might break out the Dobbie at iTelescope.net backup site Epsion....(Hey I can call it what ever I like!) ;-)  and put the Cannon 550d up on it in the spirit of the OMN International Observe the Moon Night.

Join us around 7:30 Local for some fun and a glass of wine. I'll be sampling the legendary Pepperjack Shiraz. Pour yourself a glass and break out your iPad/Android/Mobile phone and join us for an hour or so.


We'll take a close up look at the moon and Venus will be high in the west.

Regards

Peter 

 

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