BGSU Observatory

The Observatory houses a computer-operated DFM reflecting telescope with a half-meter (20-inch) primary mirror. The telescope is equipped with a First Magnitude CCD camera, a highly-sensitive electronic camera for photographing and measuring the brightness and color of stars and other astronomical objects. The telescope can also be used for visual observing or with a 35-mm camera for film photography.

The 0.5-meter telescope is used for instruction beginning with introductory astronomy students, including stargazing sessions and displaying images taken with the telescope in classes in the planetarium. Advanced students in Observational Astronomy or independent study courses gain hands-on experience and learn modern observing and image processing techniques. Students and faculty also use the telescope for observational research projects.

The Observatory also maintains a sky deck and several portable telescopes used along with the 0.5-meter telescope during stargazing sessions for introductory astronomy students and the general public.

The Observatory is open to the public for stargazing and viewing through the 0.5-meter telescope during the academic year following the weekend planetarium shows, weather permitting. For more information and a current schedule, visit the Planetarium home page.

For further information, contact the Observatory Director, Dr. John Laird by phone at 419-372-7244 or by email at

Go to BGSU Physics & Astronomy home page.