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Twilight on Haleakala


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About this observation
Grant Privett
Time of observation
27/09/2014 - 08:04
Observing location
Canon 1100D
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The AEOS telescope dome on Haleakala illuminated by the lights of a departing car.  This is a series of 15second images taken at 3200ISO by Grant Privett using a Canon 1100D during late equinoctial twilight.

Grant comments that this is a quiet, lonely and beautiful place to be - but cold, despite being in the tropics. Well worth the 90 minute drive up from the coast.

According to Wikipedia the 3.67-meter telescope, known as the Advanced Electro-Optical System (AEOS), owned by the United States defence department, is the largest US owned optical telescope designed for tracking satellites. The 75-ton AEOS telescope points and tracks very accurately, yet is fast enough to track both low-Earth satellites and ballistic missiles. AEOS can be used simultaneously by many groups or institutions because its light can be channeled through a series of mirrors to seven independent coudé rooms below the telescope. Employing sophisticated sensors that include an adaptive optics system, radiometer, spectrograph, and long-wave infrared imager, the telescope tracks man-made objects in deep space and performs space object identification data collection.

AEOS is equipped with an adaptive optics system, the heart of which is a 941-actuator deformable mirror that can change its shape to remove the atmosphere's distorting effects. Scientists are expected to get near diffraction-limited images of space objects.

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