The Liverpool Telescope is a 2.0 metre unmanned fully robotic
telescope at the Observatorio del Roque de Los Muchachos on the
Canary island of La Palma. It is owned and operated by Liverpool
John Moores University, with financial support from STFC.
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic
The Liverpool Telescope is an unmanned and fully robotic
observatory, and telescope operations continue to proceed normally. LT staff are working
from home and continue to support operations.
We'll continue to keep our users fully informed of any changes in observatory status.
First detection of a double caustic crossing in a microlensed quasar
Astronomers have detected for the first time a double caustic-crossing in a microlensed quasar. The collaborative project, between research teams in Russia, Spain, Ukraine and Uzbekistan, used the Liverpool Telescope and the 1.5m telescope at the Maidanak Observatory in Uzbekistan to conduct a 14-year monitoring campaign (2006-2019) of the gravitationally-lensed quasar known as the "Einstein Cross". [full story]
Nearby stars imaged in 3D
Recent images taken by NASA's New Horizons spacecraft of nearby stars Wolf 359 and Proxima Centauri show obvious parallax much greater than observed from Earth orbit. Astronomers around the world were encouraged to image the stars at the same time as New Horizons and compare them to provide a first-ever demonstration of large and "pure" stellar parallaxes. [full story]
Equatorial outflows in the black hole transient Swift J1357.2-0933
Swift J1357.2-0933 is a black hole X-ray binary which shows transient
behaviour, alternating long periods of quiescence with short (weeks
long) and violent outbursts. These episodes are triggered by
a sudden increase of mass accretion onto the black hole.
The system was observed to go into outburst in 2017: the first
such event since the outburst which led to its discovery in 2011. In a
paper published recently in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical
Society, Jimenez-Ibarra et al. report high time resolution follow-up
of the 2017 outburst. [full story]
New Exposure Time Calculators
New Exposure Time Calculators (ETCs) for the LT have been installed on the website at the Exposure Time Calculator page. Between the two ETCs (one for imaging, the other for spectroscopy), existing and prospective users can answer questions on what exposure times are necessary to achieve a required signal to noise ratio. Users can select any of the many instruments mounted on the LT and adjust their settings, as well as the effect of atmospheric turbulence ("seeing") and background sky brightness. [full story]
A Milestone Gamma Ray Burst Study: GRB190114C
Liverpool John Moores University astrophysicists and the Liverpool Telescope contributed to a study published in Nature recently of a gamma-ray burst caused by the collapse of a massive star 5 billion light years away. Analysis of the minutes immediately after the burst reveals emission of photons a trillion times more energetic than visible light. “These are the highest energy photons ever seen from a gamma-ray burst,” stated Dr Daniel Perley, a senior lecturer at LJMU's Astrophysics Research Institute involved with the study. [full story]