Observing Advice for the NRAO Skynet 20-meter telescope

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Some Advice for Beginners

Getting Started ... Where's my data?

Details for various kinds of observing projects
Mapping/Imaging Advice Spectrum Observing Advice Pulsar observing

Getting started: Introduction to Observing with the Green Bank 20-meter telescope

The Skynet 20-meter radio telescope can be used for several different types of observing.

  • Continuum : the power in a specified bandwidth or filter is recorded. This is good for mapping, i.e., making images of the objects, and measuring the strength or flux density of a source.
  • Spectral Line : for analyzing the frequencies emitted by certain atoms and molecules, such as Hydrogen and OH. One can measure velocities and power.
  • Pulsars : for detecting rapidly rotating neutron stars and measuring the rate of pulses.

    Here is a guide to the Skynet radio web interface.

  • 1. Main 20-meter Skynet Page: Near the top right of the page, click "LOGIN" : Enter your login and password.

  • You are shown a list of your observations that have already been done.

  • 2. Click "+Add New Observation" this takes you to the "Add Observation" screen.

  • 3. The "Radio Observing | Add Observation" screen:

  • 4. The "Receiver Settings" screen:


  • 5. "Path Settings" screen:"

    There are four path types to choose: Track, Map, Daisy, and On/Off.

    [by Frank D. Ghigo, NRAO-Green Bank, Feb-Mar 2015; revised July 2017; June 2020]