UND Physics and Astrophysics Department sets ‘Martens-Kraus Telescope’ dedication Friday, Nov. 1, at the Gorecki Alumni Center

The University of North Dakota Department of Physics and Astrophysics will dedicate the “Martens-Kraus Telescope” during a free community event on Friday, Nov. 1, at the Gorecki Alumni Center.

The event will celebrate the department’s fully operational telescope, donated by Erwin Martens, and co-named for the late UND Professor Emeritus of physics and astrophysics Olen Kraus.

The event is open to the public with free reception and refreshments at 3:30 p.m.

The Martens Observatory contains the Martens-Kraus telescope, a 0.51-meter (20 inch) diameter telescope made by PlaneWave, housed in a Technical Innovations 15-foot diameter Pro-Dome observatory.

The observatory’s site in Forest River, N.D., offers very dark skies, very little light pollution, and little anticipated urban sprawl.

In addition, the telescope is designed to carry out observations over the Internet and be as autonomous as possible. The primary mission for the telescope is research, but will include teaching and outreach projects.

The astronomical research that is possible at the Martens Observatory will enhance UND’s capabilities and give students advanced knowledge of the operations of large telescopes. In general, telescope time is competitive on federally funded telescopes.

The Martens-Kraus Telescope gives UND students an unprecedented opportunity to explore the night sky without time constraints.

For more information, contact Craig Garaas-Johnson, director of advancement for the College of Arts & Sciences, at 777.3669 or craig.garaasjohnson@und.edu.

Contact:
David L. Dodds
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Public Relations Group
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David.dodds@UND.edu
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