The WIYN Observatory

The WIYN Observatory is a ground-breaking facility with a 3.5-meter telescope atop Kitt Peak National Observatory in Southern Arizona. It is owned and operated by the WIYN Consortium, which consists of the University of Wisconsin, Indiana University and the National Optical Astronomy Observatory (NOAO). This partnership between public and private universities and NOAO was the first of its kind. Over nearly two decades of operation, the universities and the larger astronomical community have benefited from access to this well run observatory and its excellent site. The telescope incorporates many technological breakthroughs including a modern dome and actively controlled mirror. WIYN has earned a reputation in particular for its excellent image quality that is now available over a wider field than ever before through the addition of the One Degree Imager optical camera.

Detailed information on the WIYN Telescope is available on the WIYN Technical Specifications page.

WIYN Consortium Seeks New Partners

The WIYN Consortium, which operates the 3.5-m WIYN telescope on Kitt Peak in Arizona, is seeking new partners to join the consortium. Our immediate goal is to secure the future operations of the WIYN 3.5-m telescope. However, we are also interested in talking to potential partners about the possibility of creating a new consortium that would operate both the WIYN and Mayall 4-m telescope as a two-telescope system on Kitt Peak.

For additional information, pleas see the Potential Partner Information.


Science Highlight

Supernova SN2014J imaged with ODI

The recent supernova explosion (named SN2014J) in the galaxy M82 is particularly exciting because this galaxy is relatively close ("only" about 12 million light years distant). This enables astronomers to independently measure the distance of this type Ia supernova, and thus calibrate the distance to other type Ia supernovae.

The image shows SN2014J (arrow) in M82 as it was observed by the WIYN 3.5m telescope on January 28, 2014, a few days before reaching maximum brightness. The observation used WIYN's newest camera, the One Degree Imager. The WIYN aperture and spatial resolution will be essential as the team follows the fading supernova during the months ahead.

Visitor Information

The WIYN 3.5m is not open to the public. However, the visitor's center does offer daily tours of other telescopes on Kitt Peak. For more information on visiting Kitt Peak National Obseratory see the Kitt Peak Visitor's Center web site.