Far out! SFU to build $4.4-million astronomical observatory by August
When I attended Simon Fraser University way back when, one of my favourite first-year classes was a physics course called Introduction to Astronomy. Well, that course would have been much more interesting with an astronomical observatory on campus.
SFU has just unveiled its plans for such a facility on Burnaby Mountain: the $4.4-million Trottier Observatory and Courtyard. To be located near Strand Hall, the observatory will feature a 0.7-metre-diameter reflector telescope under a six-meter-diameter dome. The university expects it to be completed by August.
According to an SFU news release, the telescope will have a digital feed and be remote-controllable by community groups and schools. Next to the dome, a viewing plaza will offer sundials and space for people to set up portable telescopes.
A donation from the Trottier Foundation is making the observatory possible. SFU is also opening the Trottier Studio for Innovative Science Education, which will host hands-on science workshops for kids in the Shrum Science Building.