Teide Observatory

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Teide Observatory
Obs 1.jpg
Organization Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias
Location Tenerife
Coordinates 28°18′00″N 16°30′35″W / 28.30000°N 16.50972°W / 28.30000; -16.50972Coordinates: 28°18′00″N 16°30′35″W / 28.30000°N 16.50972°W / 28.30000; -16.50972
Altitude 2,390 m. (7,841 ft.)
Established 1964

The Observatorio del Teide (Teide Observatory) is an astronomical observatory on Tenerife operated by the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias. Opened in 1964, it became one of the first major international observatories, attracting telescopes from different countries around the world because of the good astronomical seeing conditions. Later the emphasis for optical telescopes shifted more towards Roque de los Muchachos Observatory on La Palma. It is considered one of the world's major observatories.

Telescopes[edit]

Solar telescopes[edit]

THÉMIS
Testing laser systems on the ESO Wendelstein Laser Guide Star system.[1]

Nocturnal telescopes[edit]

Radio telescopes for cosmic microwave background astronomy[edit]

Other buildings on the site[edit]

The observatory has a visitors' centre and a residencia (hostel) for astronomers. Brian May helped construct a building there to study interplanetary dust.

Climate[edit]

The position where the observatory is situated has a cold mediterranean climate, with average temperature features reminiscent of southern England. This renders in warm summers that averages around 23 °C (73 °F) with light frosts being possible and sometimes happening in winter. Extremes are moderated by its marine features, which combined with the altitude keeps temperatures below 30 °C (86 °F) even during heat waves, and in spite of the altitude the marine features are strong enough to prevent severe frosts. Sunshine levels, as typical of semi-arid climates, are high throughout the year. Many alpine areas at further distance from the equator are above the tree line at this elevation, but Teide is far above even any subarctic temperatures due to its position on the 28th parallel north.

Climate data for Izaña Observatory (1981-2010) (altitude: 2371 m)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 18.3
(64.9)
19.9
(67.8)
22.0
(71.6)
23.0
(73.4)
26.0
(78.8)
27.7
(81.9)
30.4
(86.7)
29.6
(85.3)
27.2
(81)
23.0
(73.4)
20.8
(69.4)
18.8
(65.8)
30.4
(86.7)
Average high °C (°F) 7.5
(45.5)
8.0
(46.4)
10.2
(50.4)
11.8
(53.2)
14.5
(58.1)
18.9
(66)
23.0
(73.4)
22.6
(72.7)
18.6
(65.5)
14.3
(57.7)
11.1
(52)
8.8
(47.8)
14.1
(57.4)
Daily mean °C (°F) 4.3
(39.7)
4.7
(40.5)
6.4
(43.5)
7.6
(45.7)
10.1
(50.2)
14.4
(57.9)
18.5
(65.3)
18.2
(64.8)
14.5
(58.1)
10.6
(51.1)
7.8
(46)
5.6
(42.1)
10.2
(50.4)
Average low °C (°F) 1.1
(34)
1.3
(34.3)
2.7
(36.9)
3.5
(38.3)
5.8
(42.4)
9.9
(49.8)
14.0
(57.2)
13.8
(56.8)
10.4
(50.7)
6.9
(44.4)
4.5
(40.1)
2.4
(36.3)
6.4
(43.5)
Record low °C (°F) −8.0
(17.6)
−9.8
(14.4)
−9.1
(15.6)
−8.2
(17.2)
−5.1
(22.8)
−1.4
(29.5)
−0.2
(31.6)
1.2
(34.2)
0.0
(32)
−3.0
(26.6)
−4.0
(24.8)
−6.8
(19.8)
−9.8
(14.4)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 47
(1.85)
67
(2.64)
58
(2.28)
18
(0.71)
7
(0.28)
1
(0.04)
0
(0)
5
(0.2)
13
(0.51)
37
(1.46)
54
(2.13)
60
(2.36)
367
(14.46)
Avg. precipitation days (≥ 1.0 mm) 5 4 4 3 1 0 0 1 2 4 4 6 34
Avg. relative humidity (%) 50 54 48 45 40 32 25 30 43 55 54 52 44
Mean monthly sunshine hours 226 223 260 294 356 382 382 358 295 259 220 218 3,473
Source: Agencia Estatal de Meteorología[5]

See also[edit]

ESO and Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias sign agreement on adaptive optics collaboration.[6]

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  • Rayrole, J. (1985). "The European observatory at the Canary Islands" 233. pp. 32–50. doi:10.1007/BFb0022394.