Turkey's only radio telescope attracts students and researchers

TECHNOLOGY

Located in the central Anatolian city of Kayseri, Turkiye’s only radio observatory attracts students, researchers and astronomers from all over the country.

The Center’s Erciyes University (ERÜ) Observatory, Applied Research Center is located on the university campus.

The observatory has two optical telescopes of 35 and 40 centimeters and a 12.8-meter radar system formerly used by NATO SATCOM.

In addition to astronomers and researchers, the facility attracts students from other related fields such as physics, engineering, and mathematics. Also, many new graduates come to the ERU Observatory Application and Research Center for internships.

İnci Akkaya Oralhan of the ERU’s Department of Astronomy and Space Sciences said the observatory is Turkey’s first and only radio observatory.

“Our observatory has a 12.8-meter antenna originally used by NATO SATCOM for satellite tracking. More precisely, it was a radar system. We reused the system as a radio telescope. I do,” she said.

Telescopes can be used to wirelessly transmit signals and the magnetic spectrum that offer several advantages over conventional optical telescopes.

“Because radio signals undergo little distortion before they arrive from deep space, we can get a lot of information about the universe and star formation in particular,” Oralhan added.

Besides the radio telescopes, the ERU Observatory has two large telescopes, one with 35 cm and one with 40 cm optics. Used for taking pictures of the sky and other scientific observations.

“Our observatory shares an organic connection with the departments of astronomy and space science.In addition to scientific observations, we also educate students here. I have a small telescope for ,” Olarhan said.

The main telescopes are located in two domes that can rotate 360 ​​degrees to monitor the Earth’s movements simultaneously.

“Each telescope needs to be stationary to get good observations, but the dome helps the telescope follow the rotation of the Earth,” she added.

The observatory also hosts a weather station that collects live data and makes telescopic observations accordingly.

Ahmet Tarhan, an electrical and electronic engineering student at the Konya University of Technology who wanted an internship at the ERU Observatory, said: , so I decided to do a compulsory internship here. ”

“I was interested in this field because it involved communications, velocity, and position finding here. Besides, I’ve always been interested in celestial events. That’s why I wanted to be close to the place,” he added.

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