Rich Science Accessible to All

The SMARTS Consortium operates four 1-meter class telescopes on Cerro Tololo, Chile.  Membership in SMARTS is open to individuals or institutions, including international partners.

0.9-m + 2KCCD

A 13.5' x 13.5' imager with a variety of filters. Observing mode is traditional user runs.

1.3-m + ANDICAM

Simultaneous optical (6' x 6') and IR (2.5' x 3.5') imager. Observing preformed in queue and service mode.

1.5-m + CHIRON

High resolution spectrometer covering 410-870 nm. Observing preformed in queue and service mode.

Science Highlights

Spectroscopic Subsystems in Nearby Wide Binaries

SMARTS PI Andrei Tokovinin has written a paper showcasing SMARTS CHIRON data. Read the abstract here: Radial velocity (RV) monitoring of solar-type visual binaries has been conducted at the CTIO/SMARTS 1.5-m telescope to study short-period systems. Data reduction is described, mean and individual RVs of 163 observed objects are given. New spectroscopic binaries are discovered or suspected in 17 objects, for some of them orbital periods could be determined. Subsystems are efficiently detected even in a single observation by double lines and/or by the RV difference between the components of visual binaries. The potential of this detection technique is quantified by simulation and used for statistical assessment of 96 wide binaries within 67 pc. It is found that 43 binaries contain at least one subsystem and the occurrence of subsystems is equally probable in either primary or secondary components. The frequency of subsystems and their periods match the simple prescription proposed by the author (2014, AJ, 147, 87). The remaining 53 simple wide binaries with a median projected separation of 1300 AU have the distribution of the RV difference between their components that is not compatible with the thermal eccentricity distribution f(e) = 2e but rather matches the uniform eccentricity distribution. Paper | CHIRON.

A New Scheme for CHIRON Data Reductions in Fiber Mode

SMARTS P.I. Fred Walter (Stony Brook University) has expanded upon the current CHIRON reduction scheme! New features include cosmic ray rejection, Boxcar extraction with inter-order background subtraction, improved error propagation, optional Gaussian extraction, extraction of orders 126-138 (4085 - 4510A), extraction of all 1028 pixels in the order, enabling complete coverage to 8300A, flux calibration, and order splicing into a one-dimensional spectrum, 4085 - 8900A.
Paper | Figures | IDL Procedures | Master Calibration Files

Terrestrial planet found using microlensing

Astronomers, led by SMARTS P.I. Andy Gould (O.S.U.), used the SMARTS 1.3-m + ANDICAM, along with data compiled from observatories around the world, to reveal the presence of a planet during a microlensing event. This exciting result was recently published in Science, v345, p46-49, 2014. Abstract | Paper | Figures

The Solar Neighborhood

The RECONS team has compiled a comprehensive-and growing-data base of every object in every system within 25 parsecs of the sun. See their video documenting their heroic efforts below. Video credit Adric Riedel.

Three is a crowd

Eric Mamajek (University of Rochester), Andreas Seifahrt (The University of Chicago) Jennifer Bartlett (U.S. Naval Observatory), Todd Henry (Georgia State University), et al used the SMARTS 0.9m telescope to measure the parallax for the third component in the Fomalhaut system, previously thought to have been a double star system. Press Release.

Stony Brook/SMARTS Atlas of (mostly) Southern Novae

Fredrick Walter, Andrew Battisi, and Sarah E. Towers (Stony Brook University) have created the Stony Brook/SMARTS Atlas of (mostly) Southern Novae. This atlas contains spectra and photometry obtained with SMARTS since 2003. Abstract | Paper | Atlas.