News & Events

The Observatory is Open!

Visit our public observatory! Open from 7:00 to 9:00 PM EST -- 8:00 to 10:00 PM DST Monday thru Thursday when classes are in session.

Please call Larry DeWarf in advance if you plan to visit with a group of people. The phone number is 610.519.4820.

Spring 2015 Colloquia*

January 23

Dr. Joseph Rodriguez

Vanderbiilt University

“KELT: The Little Telescope Performing Big Science”

The Kilodegree Extremely Little Telescope (KELT) project is an all-sky photometric survey, operated by Vanderbilt University, Ohio State University and Lehigh University, designed to detect transiting extrasolar planets around bright stars. The survey observes over 60% of the entire sky with a cadence of 10 to 20 minutes over many years. For transit discovery, the survey is optimized for high precision (<1%) photometry for stars with 8 < V < 11, but observes stars at lower photometric precision (1% to 10%) with 7 < V < 14. The project uses two telescopes, KELT-North at Winer Observatory in Sonoita, Arizona and KELT-South at the South African Astronomical Observatory (SAAO) in Sutherland, South Africa, and a network of astronomers around the world for spectroscopic and photometric follow-up including the Skynet Telescope Network. KELT-North has ~9 years of observations while KELT- South has about 4 years. Currently, KELT has published four exoplanet discoveries, with several more confirmed discoveries nearing publication. The KELT survey provides photometric coverage of over 2.5 million stars, presenting the opportunity to perform multi-year studies of stellar variability. Therefore in addition to the exoplanet search, the KELT survey provides the unique combination of baseline, cadence, and sky coverage conducive to many types of stellar astrophysics research.



*Unless otherwise noted, colloquia are held at 2:30 PM on Fridays in Mendel 341.  Refreshments are served at 2:15