SMARTS History

We are trying to reconstruct some of the history of SMARTS, but it is incomplete.  Please help us fill in the details!  Contact Victoria Gardner if you have any information that could help us.
  • 19??:  The YALO consortium was formed by Yale, AURA, U. of Lisbon, and Ohio State University to operate the Yale 1.0m telescope at CTIO.
  • 1998B:  YALO queue observations with the optical detector ANDICAM began
  • July 1999:  the IR array was installed on ANDICAM, enabling simultaneous optical and infared imaging
  • ??  The University of Lisbon left YALO.
  • ?? NOAO announced that it would no longer operate the other small telescopes at CTIO (<2.0m)
  • ??  Charles Bailyn, PI of YALO, approached the community with the idea of forming a larger consortium to maintain the small telescope capabilities.
  • October 2001:  The SMARTS consortium was born at a meeting at the American Museum of Natural History.  The product of that meeting was a commitment on the part of the consortium members to write a proposal to the NSF.
  • ??? The NSF proposal was accepted, with the second and third year of operations to be awarded based on the success of the first year's effort.
  • 24 September 2002:  The YALO 1.0m project finished operations.  ANDICAM moved to the 1.3m for the 2003A observing semester by a team led by Darren DePoy.
  • October-November 2002:  New cameras were installed at the 1.5-m and 0.9-m.
  • 1 February 2003:   SMARTS officially began its operation of the CTIO 0.9-m, 1.3-m and 1.5-m telescopes
  • March 2003:  OSU installed a new 12-position filter wheel and CCD at the 1.0m.
  • 12 May 2004:  SMARTS operations at the 1.0m telescope began with the first visiting astronomer.
  • 28 May 2004:  The first SMARTS queue/service observing block began at the 1.0m telescope.
  • April 2005:  A new Telescope Control System for the 0.9m was installed.
  • 7-8 July 2005:  The Y4KCam began regular observing operations at the 1.0m telescope.
  • 9 January 2006:  The SMARTS2 Consortium Agreement took effect.
  • 2006B:  The SMARTS 1.5m telescope begins to run in full queue mode for the RC Spec and the CPAPIR.

History and pictures of the SMARTS telescopes