Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

LJMU receives Royal accolade for developing the world’s largest robotic telescope

05.12.2005


Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU) has been awarded one of the UK’s most prestigious educational awards for its astronomical excellence and public engagement in science.


The Liverpool Telescope


Gamma Ray burst



The biennial Queen’s Anniversary Prizes for Further and Higher Education recognise and reward the outstanding contribution that universities and colleges in the United Kingdom make to the intellectual, economic, cultural and social life of the nation.

LJMU’s winning entry relates to the development of the world’s largest and most sophisticated ground-based robotic telescopes, which are opening up new areas of research for professional astronomers. The University is praised for the creative application of this technology not only as part of its innovative undergraduate programmes and distance learning courses, but also because it is being harnessed to reveal the wonders of science to school children around the UK through LJMU’s National Schools’ Observatory.


Professor Michael Brown, LJMU’s Vice-Chancellor said: “Our Astrophysics Research Institute has led the world in developing robotic telescopes, which can monitor variable astronomical objects in a way not possible with other telescopes. What’s even more ground-breaking is that they have been able to harness this cutting edge technology to enthuse future generations of scientists, from primary school pupils right through to postgraduate students, through innovative courses and the National Schools’ Observatory.”

He continued: “The Liverpool Telescope is the only optical telescope in the world, where science, education and outreach are really working side by side. It’s extremely pleasing to receive this recognition and the Queen’s Anniversary prize is a fitting tribute to the high calibre and the dedication of all the staff involved.”

Working to the scientific imperative identified by its astronomers, LJMU established a subsidiary company, Telescope Technologies Ltd (TTL), in 1996 to design and build the world’s largest robotic telescope, the LJMU-owned Liverpool Telescope, located in La Palma, Canaries.

The development of the Liverpool Telescope – and four other subsequent robotic telescopes – has enabled the ARI to play an instrumental role in realising the scientific vision of a network of research class telescopes, on world-class sites around the globe. This idea was first espoused by Mike Bode, LJMU’s Professor of Astrophysics, through the Particle Physics and Astronomy Research Council (PPARC)-funded RoboNet project.

The Liverpool Telescope has now been delivering front rank science to the UK and international communities fully robotically since late-2004. Unlike other ground-based telescopes, it is flexible enough to respond to objects that appear suddenly in the sky – such as supernovae, gamma ray bursts and comets – while also contributing, for example, to the study of planets outside our solar system.

In his endorsement of the University, the famous astronomer and presenter of The Sky at Night, Sir Patrick Moore CBE said ‘a full understanding of science is essential in the modern world and in this respect the Liverpool Telescope is of immense importance’.

A proportion of the Liverpool Telescope’s observational time is set aside for use by UK schools through LJMU’s National Schools’ Observatory (NSO). Over 500 schools are currently members, enabling thousands of primary and secondary school pupils to reach for the stars by bringing high quality astronomical images right into their classrooms.

Furthermore, as part of its drive to make science both more accessible and fun, LJMU played an instrumental role in the development of Mersey Ferries’ new £10 million visitor attraction in astronomy and space exploration, Spaceport. This partnership further demonstrates the unique approach adopted by the University and its astronomers in that they are directly contributing to the regeneration of Merseyside.

A permanent Spaceport exhibit showcases how schools can join the National Schools’ Observatory and visitors can also see some of the latest Liverpool Telescope images for themselves. LJMU now hopes to increase its NSO member schools to 1200 by 2007.

Mike Bode, Professor of Astrophysics, said: “If you want people to consider a career in science, you have to excite teachers and pupils. They have to be able to see something of the real work that scientists do. The NSO enables us to show science in action. The Queen’s Anniversary award – and the increasing number of schools who have signed up to the NSO – prove that our approach is working.”

Shonagh Wilkie | alfa
Further information:
http://www.livjm.ac.uk

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht Astronomers find unexpected, dust-obscured star formation in distant galaxy
24.03.2017 | University of Massachusetts at Amherst

nachricht Gravitational wave kicks monster black hole out of galactic core
24.03.2017 | NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Giant Magnetic Fields in the Universe

Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.

The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.

Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...

Im Focus: Tracing down linear ubiquitination

Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.

Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...

Im Focus: Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance

Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs

In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...

Im Focus: Polymer-coated silicon nanosheets as alternative to graphene: A perfect team for nanoelectronics

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...

Im Focus: Researchers Imitate Molecular Crowding in Cells

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

International Land Use Symposium ILUS 2017: Call for Abstracts and Registration open

20.03.2017 | Event News

CONNECT 2017: International congress on connective tissue

14.03.2017 | Event News

ICTM Conference: Turbine Construction between Big Data and Additive Manufacturing

07.03.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Argon is not the 'dope' for metallic hydrogen

24.03.2017 | Materials Sciences

Astronomers find unexpected, dust-obscured star formation in distant galaxy

24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Gravitational wave kicks monster black hole out of galactic core

24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>