Bringing the Royal Observatory at Greenwich back to life

For the first time in 60 years astronomy could be reborn in one of its most iconic locations, the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, London.

Bring astronomy home

SIXTY years ago, the Royal Observatory Greenwich stopped stargazing and became a museum and science centre. It set out to inspire the next generation of astronomers, and to illuminate the rich history of astronomy that, since the 17th century, had taken place atop the hill in Greenwich Park in south-east London - reports newscientist.

This year, Royal Museums Greenwich has launched an appeal to bring astronomy back to the heart of Greenwich by installing a set of modern telescopes in the Altazimuth Pavilion at the Royal Observatory. The building itself, in need of conservation, is being restored by the museum to the best condition possible. The historic instruments currently housed in the upper floor of the small building will be removed, given the care and attention they need, and conserved in the museum’s collections.

The appeal provides an opportunity to transform the observatory into a working institution once more. The fundraising target of £50,000 would allow the museum to purchase new instruments capable of photographing and videoing the wonders of the universe. In order to engage as wide an audience as possible, the equipment will enable these views to be live-streamed to the world online and shared with schools and the public through the Peter Harrison Planetarium and workshops at the observatory.

The equipment would also allow the capture of data on alien planets orbiting distant stars and chemical analyses of nebulae, which could be shared widely and used by university students.

With your help, the astronomers at the Royal Observatory Greenwich can throw the doors to the cosmos wide open and inspire and excite people all over the world.Brendan Owens, Astronomer at Royal Observatory Greenwich

Signal Boost is your chance to tell our readers about a project that needs their help. We’re looking for campaigns, programmes or ideas from non-profit or voluntary enterprises. Send a proposal, together with images and information about yourself, to signalboost@newscientist.com .New Scientistdoes not endorse any claims made in this donated advertising space. We reserve the right to edit contributions for clarity and style.

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