United States Air Force Academy

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Astronomical Research Group and Observatory

The Astronomical Research Group and Observatory (ARGO), based at the U.S. Air Force Academy Observatory, houses both 1- and 0.4-m telescopes in collaboration with the worldwide Falcon Telescope Network (FTN). Our new state-of-the-art 1-meter telescope is fast-tracking, fast light-gathering, remotely operable, and features a large-format cryo-cooled camera and high-resolution spectrograph. Further, it is now the largest academic research telescope in Colorado. This system will be invaluable for both space domain awareness (SDA) and deep-space research as well as STEM outreach.

ARGO conducts near-Earth research including resolved and non-resolved space object tracking deep-space research including asteroid tracking, astronomical spectroscopy and photometry and exoplanet studies. ARGO also supports the other DFP research centers and grant work. Finally, ARGO hosts STEM outreach activities for Scout groups, school groups and teachers in partnership with the Planetarium.

  • Space object identification and tracking
  • Space object photometry and spectroscopy
  • Deep space object photometry and spectroscopy
  • STEM education and outreach in astronomy and space science
  • Space object photometry, spectroscopy, and polarimetry
  • Search for exoplanets (transit and radial velocity methods)
  • Light curve photometry of binary stars, gamma ray bursts, and supernovae
  • Hazardous near-Earth asteroid tracking

observatory telescope

The USAFA 1-meter telescope system, installed in fall 2019.


Benjamin D. Roth, Lt Col, USAF
(719) 333-6326