Katzman Automatic Imaging Telescope


Katzman Automatic Imaging Telescope
Katzman Automatic Imaging Telescope, Aug 2019 2.jpg
The Katzman Automatic Imaging Telescope dome
Alternative namesKAIT Edit this on Wikidata
Part ofLick Observatory Edit this on Wikidata
Location(s)Santa Clara County, California
Coordinates37°20′36″N 121°38′05″W / 37.343344°N 121.634822°W / 37.343344; -121.634822Coordinates: 37°20′36″N 121°38′05″W / 37.343344°N 121.634822°W / 37.343344; -121.634822 Edit this at Wikidata
First light1996
Telescope styleoptical telescope Edit this on Wikidata
Diameter76 cm (2 ft 6 in) Edit this at Wikidata
Websitewww.ucolick.org/public/telescopes/kait.html,%20https://www.ucolick.org/main/science/telescopes/kait.html Edit this at Wikidata
Katzman Automatic Imaging Telescope is located in the United States
Katzman Automatic Imaging Telescope
Location of Katzman Automatic Imaging Telescope
Commons page Related media on Wikimedia Commons

The Katzman Automatic Imaging Telescope (KAIT) is an automated telescope used in the search for supernovae.

The telescope had a first light in 1998, and is a noted robotic telescope.[1] It had first recorded data in August 1996, and was formally dedicated late that year.[2] It was used for the Lick Observatory Supernova Search.[3]

The KAIT is a computer-controlled reflecting telescope with a 76 cm mirror and a CCD camera to take pictures. It is located at the Lick Observatory near San Jose, California.

KAIT can take close to 100 images per hour and observe about 1000 galaxies a night.

The Katzman Automatic Imaging Telescope is a robotic telescope designed to look for supernova.[4] The telescope uses 76 cm (30 inch) diameter mirror that feeds a CCD imager with 20 slot filter wheel.[4] The telescope is also supported by an electronic weather station, that can feed data to the robotic telescope control system.[3] Several computers run software that controls the telescope and take in the data from the sensors.[3]

The telescope's development was funded by the NSF at private donors since 1989, turning 30-inch (~760 mm) telescope in a computer controlled super nova huntress.[5][dead link] The telescope can also monitor the brightness of variable stars.[5]

Observations & research

KAIT discovered its first supernova in 1997, SN 1997bs.[3] The next year (1998) twenty supernova were found after improvements to the telescope, and in 1999 forty supernova were discovered.[3]

The telescope has been noted for discovering the supernova SN 1999em.[6] This super nova was in the spiral galaxy NGC 1637, and was observed later by telescope such as the VLT (4x8.2m).[6]

Another example of KAIT discovery was SN 1999ec, a type Ib supernova that was discovered in the interacting galaxy NGC 2207 on October 2, 1999.[7]

In 2011, KAIT was one of six telescopes used for the Lick AGN Monitoring Project.[8]

Between 1998 and 2013, KAIT had discovered 900 supernova.[9] In 2013, the supernova 2013ej was discovered by KAIT in the galaxy Messier 74; it was noted for being as bright as 10th magnitude.[9]

In 2014, KAIT helped determine the age of a supernova found in the galaxy M83, because it had images of that region of the sky from just a few days prior to its discovery, establishing it had not brightened at that time.[10]

In 2016, KAIT spotted the super nova SN 2016coj in NGC 4125, thought to be a Type Ia supernova.[11]

In 2019, KAIT was one of the telescopes whose data was used in a study on Blazars.[12]


Year Supernovae Novae Dwarf Novae Comets
1998 20 4 2 1
1999 40 1 7 1
2000 38 2 0 0
2001 68 3 0 0
2002 82 2 0 0
2003 95 5 0 0
2004 83 0 0 0
2005 82 0 0 0
2006 84 0 0 0
2007 69 0 0 0
2008 77 0 0 0
2009 54 0 0 0
2010 51 0 0 0

See also


  1. ^ "The 0.76 m KAIT telescope, adapted from [28]". ResearchGate. Retrieved 2019-11-22.
  2. ^ "2001ASPC..246..121F Page 121". Bibcode:2001ASPC..246..121F. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  3. ^ a b c d e "2001ASPC..246..121F Page 121". Bibcode:2001ASPC..246..121F. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  4. ^ a b "2001ASPC..246..121F Page 121". Bibcode:2001ASPC..246..121F. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  5. ^ a b "Automated Supernova Searches To Begin At Lick Observatory". EurekAlert!. Retrieved 2019-11-21.
  6. ^ a b information@eso.org. "Spiral Beauty Graced by Fading Supernova". www.eso.org. Retrieved 2019-11-21.
  7. ^ Jha, S.; et al. (1999). "Supernova 1999ec in NGC 2207". IAU Circular. 7269: 2. Bibcode:1999IAUC.7269....2J.
  8. ^ A. Panncoast, et al. - The Lick AGN Monitoring Project 2011: Photometric Light Curves (2019) - American Astronomical Society
  9. ^ a b "Bright supernova in M74". Sky & Telescope. 2013-07-29. Retrieved 2019-11-22.
  10. ^ Science, Megan Gannon 2014-01-22T21:40:49Z; Astronomy. "Exploding Star: New Supernova Discovery Is Closest in Years". Space.com. Retrieved 2019-11-22.
  11. ^ Lewis, Danny. "Spy Two Supernovae in June's Night Sky". Smithsonian. Retrieved 2019-11-22.
  12. ^ Liodakis, Ioannis; Romani, Roger W.; Filippenko, Alexei V.; Kocevski, Daniel; Zheng, WeiKang (2019-07-22). "Probing Blazar Emission Processes with Optical/Gamma-Ray Flare Correlations". The Astrophysical Journal. 880 (1): 32. arXiv:1905.11418. Bibcode:2019ApJ...880...32L. doi:10.3847/1538-4357/ab26b7. ISSN 1538-4357. S2CID 167217500.
  13. ^ "The KAIT Home Page". Archived from the original on 2006-04-22. Retrieved 2006-01-05.

External link

  • The Lick Observatory Supernova Search with the Katzman Automatic Imaging Telescope (2001)