sCMOS Observations at SwissOGS

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Owner: LabRoots

2019/12/11 11:00:00 | 60 min | English | (GMT-4:00) Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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The Zimmerwald Laser and Astrometric Telescope (ZIMLAT) is the most versatile instrument of the Swiss Optical Ground Station and Geodynamics Observatory Zimmerwald (SwissOGS). The telescope hosts both, the Satellite Laser Ranging (SLR) system, and the astronomical cameras used for the observation and the characterization of space debris objects. Until now, the ANDOR NEO 5.5 sCMOS camera was mainly used for the characterization of space debris by acquiring high-resolution light curves. In this presentation, we will show the results achieved by the recently extended use of the sCMOS camera to different astronomical research fields.
First, we will describe the integration of the sCMOS camera in the SLR system as tracking camera. Then we will show how, by using the camera, we could improve the performances of the SLR system. The tracking camera in fact allows us to correct in real time the pointing of the telescope, thus helping us to overcome the limit given by the small field of view of the SLR system by shortening the target acquisition time. The correction of the telescope pointing allows us to measure, via SLR, the distance to the observed objects. At the same time, the camera provides simultaneously angular and brightness information, which can be merged with the ranges, for both, the orbit, and the attitude determination of the observed object. This feature becomes fundamental for space debris research. Finally, we will show the results produced by the camera during daytime and its application in the field of Near Earth Asteroids.
This study analyses only real measurements (both angular and ranges) gathered for defunct satellite using the night-tracking camera of the ZIMLAT telescope of the SwissOGS, owned by the Astronomical Institute of the University of Bern (AIUB).
Learning Objectives:
  • Using CMOS camera in different astronomical research fields.
  • Demonstrating the innovation in space debris orbit and attitude determination due to camera technology.
  • Discovering unusual astronomical use cases for the camera.

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Emiliano Cordelli, PhD Physics, MSc Astronautical/Space Engineering

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Dr. Emiliano Cordelli is a researcher at the Astronomical Institute of the University of Bern (AIUB) and currently in charge of research and development at the Swiss Optical Ground Station and Geodynamics Observatory Zimmerwald (SwissOGS). His areas of expertise include orbital and attitude dynamics of artificial objects, covering also the orbit and attitude determination of space debris. He has observational and analysis experience of satellite laser ranging, astrometric, and photometric measurements. After his BA in Aerospace Engineering at the University of Bologna with a thesis project on the application of differential GPS technique, he worked as GPS augmentation algorithm developer for an info-mobility project of the Italian Space Agency. He earned his MA in Astronautical Engineering at the University of Rome where he was involved in the first setup of a telescope system for space debris observation. His MA thesis was on orbit and attitude determination of space debris using optical measurements. He then moved to Bern, where he earned is Ph.D. degree. During his Ph.D., his research focused on the accuracy improvement of orbit determination results. He studied the influence of observation geometry in the orbit determination process and the benefits of angular and ranges data fusion. At the same time, he was responsible for maintaining the AIUB internal space debris catalog, the planning of observations at SwissOGS, SwissOGS data quality check, and was part of the SwissOGS night-observers. At the University of Bern, he is involved in teaching the Fundamentals Astronomy course regarding satellite laser ranging and space debris observations. He also acts as advisor to bachelor, master and doctoral level dissertation projects.

Ines Juvan-Beaulieu, Dr. Rer. nat.

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Dr. Ines Juvan-Beaulieu studied physics, with a primary focus on Astrophysics, at the University of Graz in Austria. In April 2018 she completed her PhD thesis in 'Multicolor Photometry of Transiting Extrasolar Planets'. In addition, she has held a research position at the Space Research Institute in Graz and spent some time lecturing at the University of Innsbruck. Further to her work in the field of Exoplanets, Dr. Juvan-Beaulieu also has experience in Python programming, data analysis and she successfully conducted observing runs. Since November 2018, Dr. Juvan-Beaulieu is part of Andor Technology. In her role as an Astronomy Specialist, she is supporting the product management-, marketing- and sales team at Andor as well as Astronomers with technical and application related questions.

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