AAS 200th meeting, Albuquerque, NM, June 2002
Session 47. Telescopes and Education
Display, Tuesday, June 4, 2002, 10:00am-6:30pm, SW Exhibit Hall

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[47.03] Internet Access to a 4.6-m Radio Telescope for High Schools

M. W. Castelaz, J. D. Cline (PARI), D. A. Moffett (Furman Univ.), J. Case (Brevard H.S.), J. Daugherty (UNC-Asheville)

The School of Galactic Radio Astronomy (SGRA), based at the Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI), is an experience-based high school laboratory that uses Internet access to PARI’s remote-controlled 4.6-m radio telescope. The radio telescope is equipped with 1420 MHz, 4.85 GHz, 6.67 GHz, and 12.2 GHz receivers. The detected signals may either be recorded as a spectrum over a 4 MHz bandpass, or continuum that can be mapped over extended regions. Teachers, classes, and Independent Study students who access the 4.6-m radio telescope via the SGRA webpage find five components: Radio Astronomy Basics, Observing, Lab Exercises, Guides, and Logbook. We will briefly describe these.

We have completed the beta-testing of the SGRA concept with the assistance of students at Brevard High School. They have connected remotely from their school and worked through the prepared laboratory exercises. The 4.6-m radio telescope was also used, on site, by students from the North Carolina School of Science Mathematics who mapped the Galactic Plane at 1420 MHz. The results of the students’ observations will be presented as examples of the capability of the radio telescope and SGRA.

Teachers who wish to use the SGRA radio telescope must first attend Summer 2002 workshops. Teachers learn to use the radio telescope, work through several labs, are given login information, and schedule their observing time at the workshops. Since SGRA may also be of interest in the undergraduate classroom, we invite college-level participation as well.

We acknowledge support from the Space Telescope Science Institute IDEAS Program, and the South Carolina State University PAIR Program. We also thank the Z. Smith Reynold’s Foundation for partial support of the teacher workshop facilities.

If you would like more information about this abstract, please follow the link to http://www.pari.edu/sgra. 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: mcastelaz@pari.edu

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 34
© 2002. The American Astronomical Soceity.