31-inch NURO Telescope

About the NURO Telescope

Experience the cosmos as a VIP.

This 31-inch (0.79-meter) telescope was installed in 1964 at Lowell’s Anderson Mesa Dark Sky Site. The U.S. Geological Survey originally operated it to create geological maps of the Moon, in support of Project Apollo. Ownership was transferred to Lowell Observatory in 1972 and it was refurbished in 1990.

The telescope later became a primary research tool for the National Undergraduate Research Observatory (NURO). This consortium of mainly undergraduate education institutions from around the country, both public and private, provides training and research experiences for its students. The instrument is currently used by the NURO program for up to 60% of the time and Lowell astronomers and their partners for the remaining time.

Research with the NURO Telescope

Typical research consists of generating light curves to monitor the brightness of celestial phenomena such as disk and planet formation around young stars, variability and dust formation in giant evolved stars, follow-up and monitoring of Kuiper belt objects, and the variations in Blazar emission.