Welcome to the UND Space Studies Observatory! As the leader in astronomy research and education in North Dakota, the UND Space Studies Observatory is leading the way to building a dynamic and growing astronomy infrastructure in North Dakota. The UND Space Studies Observatory is the only active astronomical observatory in North Dakota and offers diverse observing opportunities with multiple Internet-controllable telescopes.
The mission of the UND Space Studies Observatory is to increase and expand the astronomical research and education infrastructure in North Dakota. As the recipient of only ~$4 million annually from NASA while also being designated as an EPSCoR state, North Dakota offers abundant opportunities to develop aggressive, ground-breaking, and new research activities that will benefit the University of North Dakota, Grand Forks, and North Dakota
The primary objectives that the UND Space Studies Observatory pursues to accomplish its mission include: 1) maintaining and operating a multi-telescope, multi-wavelength facility for the conduct of research and education projects; 2) conducting complementary research projects that assist research programs at the larger national observatories, 3) offer research and education opportunities for the study of asteroids, variable stars, and the Sun, and 4) promoting science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education in North Dakota’s colleges and K-12 schools.
Current and expanding astronomy research efforts in North Dakota include asteroid near-infrared (NIR) spectroscopic research, solar physics research; broadband photometric research of asteroids and variable stars; and visible-wavelength stellar spectroscopy. Through partnership with the North Dakota Space Grant Consortium (NDSGC) and the North Dakota NASA EPSCoR programs, the UND Space Studies Observatory is working to promote a primary Research Focus Area (RFA) in North Dakota, which is to increase and expand astronomical and planetary science research in the state.
Contact Dr. Paul S. Hardersen at Hardersen@space.edu or at (701) 777-4896 with any questions. Only through increasing participation from faculty, students, teachers, and the citizens of North Dakota can we accomplish our goals. Join us today!