Robotically Controlled Telescope

Photograph of Robotically Controlled Telescope


The Robotically Controlled Telescope is located on Kitt Peak National Observatory.  Budget constraints forced the closing of this telescope as part of the Kitt Peak National Observatory in 1995, following nearly 30 years of service to KPNO. A request for proposals to operate this telescope was issued to the science community. The RCT consortium, led by Western Kentucky University, was the successful proposer for operation of the telescope. The telescope returned to limited operations in the Spring of 2004 and has been fully operational as of 2006. 

For scientists: More details can be found on the science page.

Robotically Controlled Telescope

Name(s) Robotically Controlled Telescope
Status Operational
Broad Science Goals Given the high sensitivity of the instrument research areas include protostars, novae, supernovae, black holes candidates, quasars, active galaxies, white dwarfs, and brown dwarfs. The RCT is used to enhance the undergraduate research experience and to augment our space-based observations on a variety of existing and newly conceived teaching and research projects.
Site Kitt Peak National Observatory, Arizona, USA
Location Coordinates  
Altitude 2070 meters (6791 feet)
Type Optical
Optical Design f/14 Schmidt Cassegrain
Field of View 9.6x9.6 arcminutes
Diameter: Primary M1 1.3 meters
Material: Primary M1 Cer-Vit
Diameter: Secondary M2  
Material: Secondary M2  
Mount German Equatorial
First Light Date 1969 (closed in 1995 and resumed activity in 2004)
Adaptive Optics  
Images taken with the Robotically Controlled Telescope Link
Images of the Robotically Controlled Telescope Link
Videos of the Robotically Controlled Telescope Link
Press Releases with the Robotically Controlled Telescope Link

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