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University astronomers help schools to reach for the stars

Published: 
25 April 2002

Astronomers at the University of Southampton are helping schools and colleges in the region gain access to state-of-the-art robotic telescopes around the world.

At a meeting at the University on Tuesday 30 April, experts will be explaining how school students can use the facilities of research class telescopes in Hawaii, Australia and the Canary Islands, and how they can build links with professional astronomers.

Dr Malcolm Coe of the University's Department of Physics and Astronomy says: "We hope that by providing access to some of the most advanced telescopes in the world we can inspire the astronomers of the future from amongst the students in local schools and colleges.

"Astronomy is a fascinating area of science and by linking up with high-tech telescopes via the Web youngsters can participate in the latest astronomical research. And they can do this from their classroom without having to travel halfway across the world to visit the telescopes themselves."

The new initiative is an expansion of the Liverpool Telescope Schools' Programme that has been running for more than three years. From now on schools will have access not only to the Liverpool telescope in La Palma in the Canary Islands but also the Faulkes Telescopes in Hawaii and Australia.

Paul Roche of the Faulkes Telescope Educational Unit will discuss the projects available to schools, and Professor Phil Charles, Head of Astronomy at the University of Southampton, will speak about building links with professional astronomers.

Notes for editors

  1. The Educational Use of Telescopes meeting is being held in Lecture Theatre B, Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Southampton on Tuesday 30 April at 5.30pm.
  2. The University of Southampton is a leading UK teaching and research institution with a global reputation for leading-edge research and scholarship. The University, which celebrates its Golden Jubilee in 2002, has 20,000 students and over 4,500 staff and plays an important role in the City of Southampton. Its annual turnover is in the region of £215 million.

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