MacAdam Student Observatory

Keith and his wife, Phyllis, helped create the MacAdam Student Observatory, which opened in 2008. Observatory Director Tim Knauer reflected on its impact on students: "Since the observatory’s dedication, we have provided education outreach to over 16,000 people. This does not include our own UK students. We also offer safe views of the Sun to our students and to local middle and high schoolers."

Dr. MacAdam said “We won’t duplicate the Hubble Space Telescope with an on-campus observatory, but this is your eye, receiving photons that have been on their way to you, for millions of years. Only you. You don’t have to be an astronomer or physicist to understand and be fascinated by what’s going on.”

The observatory is dedicated to serving UK students as well as astronomy enthusiasts of every age and level of experience throughout Kentucky. The observatory is atop Parking Structure No. 2 between the W. T. Young Library and the Chemistry-Physics Building. Its dome houses a Planewave 20'' (0.5 m), CDK telescope, mounted on a Mathis MI-750, equatorial mount with fork configuration. It uses a SBIG, STXL-6303, Dual Sensor, CCD camera, with filter wheel. More information and directions to the MacAdam Student Observatory are available here.

To share the excitement of stargazing through a powerful telescope, the MacAdam Student Observatory staff welcomes the public to monthly “SkyTalks” on the second Thursday of each month. A 50-minute presentation on astronomy is held in the Chemistry-Physics Building, before moving across the street to the observatory, weather permitting.