Remote access now available for searching deep space ? - Baltimore


Feb. 7, 2017 12:57 pm

Remote access now available for searching deep space ?

Astronomers at Johns Hopkins and elsewhere now have remote access to the Keck Observatory, which is on top of a Hawaiian volcano.

The W.M. Keck Observatory, on the summit of the Mauna Kea.

(Photo by Flickr user Afshin Darian, used under a Creative Commons license)

There’s a new way to look into deep space in the Baltimore area, by way of a Hawaiian volcano.

The Universities Space Research Association in Columbia recently opened a new remote observation center. You’ll have to find a spot on the schedule.

It allows astronomers in Maryland to head to USRA’s center in Columbia and access the W.M. Keck Observatory, which is located at the summit of the Mauna Kea volcano in Hawaii. The astronomers can get access to the telescopes, and eight observation instruments to collect data.

USRA reports that the first observation happened last week, on Feb. 2. Astronomers collected data to add to maps of Jupiter’s aurora as part of NASA’s Juno mission. But observers don’t have to stay in this solar system, as distant galaxies can also be viewed.

Stephen Babcock

Stephen Babcock is Market Editor for Baltimore and DC. A graduate of Northeastern University, he moved to Baltimore following stints in New Orleans and Rio Arriba County, New Mexico. His work has appeared in The New York Times, Baltimore Fishbowl, NOLA Defender, Times-Picayune and the Rio Grande Sun.


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