Astronomy Lab Exercises for the University of Texas Undergraduate Telescope (Adobe PDF format)
Lab 1 - Introduction to the sky and making telescopic observations with the CCD camera
Lab 2 - Characterizing the CCD detector
Lab 3 - Stellar Photometry
Lab 4 - Cluster Photometry
Lab 5 - Creating an observing list
Lab 6 - Proper motion
The Undergraduate 16-inch telescope
The telescope was purchased from Group 128 in 1977. For many years, it was primarily used for teaching undergraduate astronomy majors the processes involved in modern astronomical observation and for a small number of graduate student projects.
In 1997, a grant proposal was approved by the National Science Foundation to renovate the telescope; a generous member of the Department of Astronomy and McDonald Observatory Board of Visitors provided matching funds. In July 1998, the telescope was re-fit with a state-of-the-art Optomechanics mount and drive and new clock. The telescope is controlled from a Dell Optiplex GnMN 5200 computer using PC-TCS control software. Instrumentation includes visual eyepieces, CCD camera, and an Optomechanics 10-C Spectrograph.
The National Science Foundation Division of Undergraduate Education [award number 97-51287] supported renovation of the telescope under the Undergraduate Instrumentation and Laboratory Improvement Program. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.