Air Force Telescope Open to Researchers
The director of the US Air Force's Office of Scientific Research, Joseph Janni, announced that civilian astronomers will be allowed to use its 3.67-m telescope on Haleakala in Maui, Hawaii, under a two-year joint program with the National Science Foundation.
The instrument, known as the Advanced Electro-Optical System, includes sensors for radiometric, photometric and long-wave infrared analysis by up to seven independent parties. It is being retrofitted with a laser-guide-star-driven adaptive optics system.
Maj. Gen. Richard Paul, commander of the Air Force Research Laboratory, which manages the telescope under its Directed Energy Directorate, said the arrangement will benefit both communities: Astronomers will enjoy a premier research instrument, and their work will enable the Air Force to improve its methods of space surveillance.
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