AAS 197, January 2001
Session 120. Innovations in Teaching Astronomy III
Joint Oral, Thursday, January 11, 2001, 10:30am-12:00noon, Pacific One

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[120.02] Project Rigel: A Robotic Observatory with Integrated Curriculum for Undergraduate Astronomy Education

R. Mutel (U. Iowa)

Project Rigel is a complete turn-key robotic observatory system for use in undergraduate astronomy laboratories. It consists of a 37cm imaging telescope, filter wheel, spectrometer, automated dome, and Web-based observatory control software. Also included is a web-based scheduling system, image analysis software and an integrated curriculum. The curriculum covers topics suitable for a range of student levels and abilities, from survey courses for non-science majors to advanced undergraduate research projects. The goal is to develop a complete user-friendly, web-based observing system with an integrated curriculum at relatively low cost for use in college astronomy laboratories. The proto-type instrument, which is now under constrution, is scheduled for field tests during Summer 2001 and extensive student trials at the University of Iowa during the 2001-2002 academic year.

The Rigel project is a joint venture between the University of Iowa and Torus Technologies. Torus plans to offer a commercial version of the system starting early 2002. Project Rigel is funded in part by the National Science Foundation Division of Undergraduate Education.

If you would like more information about this abstract, please follow the link to http://denali.physics.uiowa.edu/rigel. This link was provided by the author. When you follow it, you will leave the Web site for this meeting; to return, you should use the Back comand on your browser.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: robert-mutel@uiowa.edu

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