text-only page produced automatically by Usablenet Assistive Skip all navigation and go to page content Skip top navigation and go to directorate navigation Skip top navigation and go to page navigation
National Science Foundation
design element
Search Awards
Recent Awards
Presidential and Honorary Awards
About Awards
Grant Policy Manual
Grant General Conditions
Cooperative Agreement Conditions
Special Conditions
Federal Demonstration Partnership
Policy Office Website

Award Abstract #1229720

MRI: Development of the Global Network of Robotic Echelle Spectrographs - NRES

Division Of Astronomical Sciences
divider line
Initial Amendment Date: August 22, 2012
divider line
Latest Amendment Date: October 28, 2015
divider line
Award Number: 1229720
divider line
Award Instrument: Standard Grant
divider line
Program Manager: James Neff
AST Division Of Astronomical Sciences
MPS Direct For Mathematical & Physical Scien
divider line
Start Date: September 1, 2012
divider line
End Date: August 31, 2016 (Estimated)
divider line
Awarded Amount to Date: $1,721,571.00
divider line
Investigator(s): Timothy Brown Timothy.M.Brown@colorado.edu (Principal Investigator)
Edward Gomez (Former Co-Principal Investigator)
Eric Hawkins (Former Co-Principal Investigator)
John Hygelund (Former Co-Principal Investigator)
divider line
Sponsor: Las Cumbres Observatory Global Telescope Network
6740 Cortona Dr Suite 102
Goleta, CA 93117-5575 (805)880-1608
divider line
divider line
Program Reference Code(s): 1207, 7697
divider line
Program Element Code(s): 1189


In recent years astronomers have observed over 1,000 stars that are thought to contain planetary systems akin to our own solar system, and new discoveries are rapidly being added. In order to confirm and characterize these systems, it is necessary to conduct numerous observations of the host stars. Telescopes collect the light from the star and pass it through a spectrograph that spreads the light out into a rainbow-like "spectrum" that can be analyzed to determine the velocity of the star as viewed from earth. If the observed velocity varies in a repeatable way it may be due to the presence of a companion object in orbit around the star. These observations require a considerable amount of telescope time and there is a shortage of the kinds of telescopes and spectrographs specifically designed to do this high precision work. This is especially problematic for so-called short period orbits, where the orbiting planet is close to its host star and the planetary "year" (the time for a full orbit around the host star) may be days or even hours. To determine the orbital characteristics of these objects frequent observations around the clock are required. As the earth rotates on its axis, however, stars, just like the sun and moon, set in the west, so they can only be seen for a few hours from a given observatory. Dr. Timothy Brown of the Las Cumbres Observatory Global Telescope network proposes to put identical spectrographs on several telescopes around the earth so that the stars can be monitored continuously as the earth turns. He and his team have designed a high resolution and very precise spectrograph and they will build six copies. Observations made with this network of spectrographs is certain to add considerably to our understanding of planetary systems. This work is funded by NSF's Division of Astronomical Sciences through the Major Research Instrumentation program.


Note:  When clicking on a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) number, you will be taken to an external site maintained by the publisher. Some full text articles may not yet be available without a charge during the embargo (administrative interval).

Some links on this page may take you to non-federal websites. Their policies may differ from this site.

Brown, T.M., Baliber, N., Bianco, F.B., Bowman, M. Burleson, B. and 50 others. "Las Cumbres Observatory Global Telescope Network," PASP, v.125, 2013, p. 1031. 

Eastman, J.D., Brown, T.M., Hygelund, J., van Eyken, J. Tufts, J.R., Barnes, S.. "NRES: The Network of Robotic Echelle Spectrographs," Journal of the SPIE, v.Unknown, 2014, p. Unknown.


Please report errors in award information by writing to: awardsearch@nsf.gov.



Print this page
Back to Top of page
Research.gov  |  USA.gov  |  National Science Board  |  Recovery Act  |  Budget and Performance  |  Annual Financial Report
Web Policies and Important Links  |  Privacy  |  FOIA  |  NO FEAR Act  |  Inspector General  |  Webmaster Contact  |  Site Map
National Science Foundation Logo
The National Science Foundation, 4201 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, Virginia 22230, USA
Tel: (703) 292-5111, FIRS: (800) 877-8339 | TDD: (800) 281-8749
  Text Only Version