Australian Astronomical Observatory

The Anglo-Australian Telescope

Australian Astronomical Observatory

The Australian Astronomical Observatory (formerly the Anglo-Australian Observatory) is located in Siding Spring in New South Wales, Australia, and consists of the Anglo-Australian Telescope (a 3.9m instrument) and the UK Schmidt Telescope (a 1.2m instrument). One of the objectives of the Anglo-Australian Telescope is to find extrasolar planets. The UK Schmidt Telescope began its life by carrying out surveys of the southern sky; it is now being used to measure the velocities of stars in the Milky Way.

Image: Star trails captured in a long exposure photograph of the Anglo-Australian Telescope dome (credit: Australian Astronomical Observatory/David Malin Images)

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The Anglo-Australian Telescope

Introduction

The AAO hunts exoplanets.

About Australian Astronomical Observatory

The Australian Astronomical Observatory (AAO), formerly the Anglo-Australian Observatory, is an optical/near-infrared astronomy observatory with its headquarters in Marsfield in suburban Sydney, Australia. Originally funded jointly by the United Kingdom and Australian governments, it is now managed wholly by Australia's Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education. The AAO operates the 3.9-metre Anglo-Australian Telescope (AAT) and 1.2-metre UK Schmidt Telescope (UKST) at Siding Spring Observatory, located near the town of Coonabarabran, Australia.

In addition to operating the two telescopes, AAO staff carry out astronomical research, as well as design and build innovative astronomical instrumentation for the AAT, UKST, and other telescopes including the European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope in Chile, and the Japanese Subaru Telescope on Mauna Kea in Hawaii.

UK involvement in the AAO ceased in June 2010, with the change of name and management arrangements effective from 1 July 2010.

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