AZT-11: History

AZT-11: History of the telescope

The initiator and inspirer of the automatic computer-controlled telescope AZT-11 was Professor, Doctor of Physics and Mathematics, Head of the Department of physics of stars and galaxies of CrAO Vladimir Borisovich Nikonov.

The telescope was put into operation on February 20, 1981. Since then the telescope has been actively used by researchers of the Crimean Astrophysical Observatory and researchers from other astronomical institutions of the CIS countries in high-precision photometric, polarimetric and spectrophotometric observations of non-stationary stars, active galactic nuclei and small bodies of the solar system. On average, the telescope operates about 1000 hours per year, excluding time for technical maintenance, scheduled maintenance and repair.

The telescope is used in works on the following research topics:

  • Photopolarimetry of active galactic nuclei: Seyfert galaxies, quasars and BL Lac objects.
  • Photopolarimetry of novae and supernovae, RS CVn and T Tauri stars, Mira-type stars.
  • Photopolarimetry of close binary systems at the late stages of evolution - cataclysmic variables, including selected magnetic interacting binary systems - polars.
  • Photopolarimetry of young stars with protoplanetary disks with the aim of studying their structure and origin of activity cycles of stars.
  • Photometric study of the solar-type activity in stars of different masses and ages in order to acquire information about their variability on time scales from fractions of a second to tens of years and analysis of spottedness and processes of flare development in individual stars.
  • Polarimetric and photometric observations of selected comets and asteroids for studying their physical characteristics - composition and structure of the surface.

All the above-mentioned studies are carried out within the cooperative programs involving researchers from various scientific institutions in Russia and other countries (Ukraine, Finland, France, Canada, Bulgaria, Slovakia, etc.).

The unique information about brightness, colors and polarization of a wide variety of objects has been acquired over the time of telescope operation. These data formed the basis for more than 400 research papers published in Russian and foreign specialized journals and reports at the international conferences and symposiums. Two doctoral and more than 10 PhD dissertations have been defended based on data taken with AZT-11.