Indiana University is a partner in the WIYN telescope consortium which operates both a 3.5-meter telescope and a 0.9-meter telescope atop Kitt Peak southwest of Tucson, AZ. As a founding member of the WIYN Consortium, department has access to more than 60 nights of observing time on the 3.5-m telescope each year.
The WIYN telescope instrumentation includes the NEID extreme precision radial velocity spectrometer designed for studies of exoplanets. The One Degree Imager is a wide field CCD imaging camera with an atmospheric dispersion corrector and a collection of both broad and narrow band filters. The Hydra multi-object spectrograph uses optical fibers to obtain spectra of up to 100 objects simultaneously over a one-degree field. The active optics of the WIYN telescope system deliver excellent image quality. Seeing of 0.5” is common on good nights.
Department members also have access to a high resolution, fiber-fed, optical echelle spectrograph (the FHiRE spectrograph) at the Wyoming InfraRed Observatory. The spectrograph is designed for precision radial velocities as well as studies of stellar abundances. The spectrograph is nearing completion and should be available for observations late in 2022.
Teaching facilities include the historic Kirkwood 12-inch refracting telescope on campus and a solar telescope is housed in the same building. The solar telescope is equipped with a narrow-band H-alpha filter for viewing sunspots and prominences. Two 14” telescopes located on the roof of Swain West and several smaller, portable telescopes are also available for use.
Historic facilities include a 36-inch reflector at the Goethe Link Observatory (named for Dr. Goethe Link) near Mooresville, Indiana. This facility is currently operated by the Indiana Astronomical Society, an amateur astronomy group in the Indianapolis area. The 36-inch telescope is not currently used for departmental research because of nearby urban lights. A site in the Morgan-Monroe State Forest houses a 16” robotic telescope that is no longer used by the department.