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Proceedings Paper

Remote Operation Of Telescopes: Long-Distance Observing
Author(s): Holland C. Ford
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Paper Abstract

Communication technology makes it possible to extend the link between the telescope and control room from tens of feet to thousands of miles. Reasons for doing so include: 1) avoiding the health risks and observing inefficiencies caused by hypoxia at high-altitude sites; 2) facilitation of new telescope scheduling schemes; 3) saving travel time and money; and 4) providing troubleshooting backup by the headquarters' engineers and astronomers. The required data rate is estimated by assuming that: 1) the data from a mosaic of nine 1000 x 1000 CCDs will be transmitted every ten (10) minutes; 2) troubleshooting will be supported by transmitting television pictures at a few frames per second. With these assumptions a 500-Kbs data rate is needed to accommodate peak data rates and to have adequate catch-up capability. A two-step implementation of remote observing at Mauna Kea is considered in detail. The first step is installation of a microwave link or glass fiber land line between Mauna Kea's summit and Waimea. The second step is to connect the island headquarters at Waimea to a mainland headquarters, or each U.C. campus, with a satellite link. Cost estimates are given for each step.

Paper Details

Date Published: 4 November 1982
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 0332, Advanced Technology Optical Telescopes I, (4 November 1982); doi: 10.1117/12.933526
Show Author Affiliations
Holland C. Ford, University of California (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 0332:
Advanced Technology Optical Telescopes I
Lawrence D. Barr; Geoffrey Burbidge, Editor(s)

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