Remote Observing with the Schulman Foundation Telescope
The Schulman Telescope
Amateur astronomers around the world can now enjoy taking full control of the Schulman Telescope. As the largest dedicated public access telescope in the world, the telescope was designed from inception to provide full remote control over the internet by amateur astrophotographers worldwide. The telescope has been provided to the Mt. Lemmon SkyCenter by the Schulman Foundation, Joseph D. Schulman, President.
Currently individuals can take direct control of the telescope operating the instrument through a web-based interface. Real-time imaging gives you feedback as to what is occurring at the observatory atop Mount Lemmon's 9,157 peak. You can see the images as they are acquired, watch the telescope and dome move, monitor the weather conditions, monitor guide stars, focus and much more. It is like being there, but sitting comfortably in your own home. Individuals can also elect to submit requests for data via scheduled (queued) observations.
We are in the process of establishing an on-line portal for purchase and scheduling of the Schulman Telescope, however, you can purchase time on the telescope or schedule queued observations now by sending an email to the Mount Lemmon SkyCenter at firstname.lastname@example.org or by contacting us at 520-626-8122. In either case, please include the best way for us to reach you in order that we can contact you to assist in planning and successfully carrying out your observations.
5.6 m *f/7
Schulman Telescope and Observatory
Focal Length: 5695mm (approximately f/7)
Operational Hour Angle from -5.2 to +5.2
Typical RMS guide errors 1.5 pixels (0.5 arcseconds)
Unguided exposures possible for up to 300 second exposures
All sky pointing: approximately 60” using T-point (1 arcsecond tolerance for final commanded position after plate solution and offset)
Equatorial Fork mount with no periodic error (friction drive)
Telescope slew rate: 8 degrees per second
Percentage of usable nights between September and June is approximately 70%
Average seeing as measured in long exposures (> 300 seconds) is approximately 1.1”
MPC observatory code G84
West longitude (h.m.s) = 7 23 09, Latitude (d.m) = 32 26.5
Altitude: 9157 ft.
Full Dome Rotation: 2 minutes
Dome shutter open/close: 5 minutes
Schulman Telescope CCD Camera and Detailed Imaging Specifications
CCD Camera: SBIG STX (KAF-16803) 4096x4096 9µ pixels
Plate Scale: 0.33”/pixel
Field of View: 22’ x 22’
Filters: 65mm square Broadband (AstroDon GenII) Red, Green, Blue also Clear (IR blocked) and 4.5nm H-alpha filters.
Faint limit of main detector for a 300 second exposure: 21st-22nd magnitude (Clear)
Chip has anti-blooming gate. Linear to 35,000 ADU
On board (dual chip SBIG design) guide chip. Filters cover guide chip.
Guide star faint limits: Clear: 13th magnitude, RGB: approximately 12th magnitude, H-alpha: 10th magnitude
60% Quantum Efficiency at 550nm
Instrument rotator (0.1 degree precision)
40-inch Electroluminescent Flat field panel
Unbinned (and uncalibrated) image size: 32Mb
CCD readout time 6 seconds (unbinned)
Autofocus time, 2 minutes
Filter select time 6 seconds
Instrument rotator full revolution 2 minutes
Sample Images of NGC1977