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The George Abell Observatory
School of Physical Sciences
Lat: N 52:01:28 Long: W 00:42:23 Observatory Telephone: +44 (0)1908 659457
The Open University
Observatory Booking
Observatory Booking
Astronomy Club
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If you are (i) a member of the OU Astronomy Club or (ii) a member of the School of Physical Sciences, and you have been trained in the use of the observatory equipment, you may book time using the observatory, subject to the rules below.

First check the Observatory Calendar to see if the slot you require is available. Then, from the calendar webpage, click on the link to 'Google Calendar' in the bottom right hand corner. Add your event sing the Google Calendar interface, then transfer the ownership of the event to Once the change of ownership of the event is accepted, it will appear in this calendar.

Rules governing the use of the Observatory are as follows:

  • Up to half the nights in a given month will normally be available to members of the OU Astronomy Club
  • Up to half the nights in a given month will normally be available to members of the School of Physical Sciences.
  • An individual may normally be allocated no more than 7 nights observing in a given month.
  • Nights may be booked no more than one month in advance, and will normally be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.

All the above rules are subject to the discretion of the Observatory Director.

Health & Safety regulations require that the observatory is never operated at night by a single observer - there must always be 2 or more people present. See the Risk Assessment for visitors to the Observatory.

All data are to be archived on the external hard-drive on the computer next to the telescope under an obvious year / month / date folder system (see existing data there).

Please note that if you take off the CCD camera that is attached to the telescope, please pack it away in its crate.

Please remember also to log what you do in the written log book (downstairs).

Notice of cancelations must be made at least twelve hours before observations are due to start. Failure to comply with these requirements may result in Observing privileges being temporarily revoked.

Prof. Andrew Norton
Director, George Abell Observatory