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Completion of the nationwide open-use at Okayama Astrophysical Observatory

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Completion of the nationwide open-use at Okayama Astrophysical Observatory

Okayama Astrophysical Observatory, which opened the era of big telescopes in Japan in 1960, has promoted the development of astrophysical observations in Japan and cultivated a spirit of nationwide open-use among domestic university researchers. This is our Okayama Astrophysical Observatory, but this morning (December 28, 2017) the 188-cm Reflector finished the last of the open-use programs, completing its mission as an open-use facility on schedule.

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Since opening in 1960 and the beginning of full-scale observation in 1962, Okayama Astrophysical Observatory has established a substantial nationwide open-use system and has contributed to the development of observational astronomy in our country. In many fields such as the world's first optical identification of X-ray stars, spectroscopic study of chemically peculiar stars, spectroscopic study of cool stars, surface spectroscopic studies of other galaxies, the search for extrasolar planets, and atmospheric exploration of extrasolar planets, outstanding achievements have been provided. Although Okayama Astrophysical Observatory will now cease to operate as an open-use observatory, telescopes such as the 188-cm Reflector are still sufficiently useful to researchers, and starting from FY 2018 university researchers and others are going to provide the operational funds to continue using the telescopes.

Text by: Hideyuki Izumiura (Okayama Astrophysical Observatory, NAOJ)

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DateDecember 28, 2017
CreditNational Astronomical Observatory of Japan

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