FSU Observatory

A modern astronomical observatory, situated on a terrace at Doak Campbell Stadium, is a visible reminder of the innovative academics-athletics partnership at FSU. The observatory includes a 17-inch primary science-grade telescope housed in a 10-ft fiberglass dome. The observatory will facilitate student training and research for both introductory and upper-level classes, as well as provide outreach opportunities for the general public. Construction was supported by the FSU Student Technology Fee, the Office of the President, and the Office of the Vice President for Finance and Administration.

“We Are All Star Stuff” Astronomy Program (WAASSAP)

WAASSAP aims to introduce astronomy to high school students from our neighboring counties. Students will learn about the observatory and the astronomical objects they are observing. Furthermore, they will interact with FSU undergraduate and graduate students as well as professors regarding STEM education and careers. These activities will in turn improve our recruitment of students from historically underrepresented groups and enhance learning about diversity for FSU students. At this stage, we are looking for FSU students who will commit approximately one night a month to enjoy the night sky with our observatory and to mentor and chat with these students about a possible career path in the STEM fields. All you need to do at this point is to leave us your name and email address at the link below so we know you are interested. We will try to restart the program virtually this fall. Thank you!

FSU students sign up here!

The project is made possible by the President’s Diversity & Inclusion Mini-Grant and the College of Arts and Sciences.

Questions? Ask Eric Hsiao or Melissa Shahbandeh.


Dome assembly work on 13-14 November 2018


Telescope Planewave CDK17
Aperture: 17 inch (432 mm)
Focal length: 115.71 inch (2939 mm)
Focal ratio: f/6.8
Configuration: Corrected Dall-Kirkham - Cassegrain with an elliptical primary and a spherical secondary
Mount: L-500 direct drive alt-az mount
Camera SBIG Aluma 8300
3448 x 2574 pixels
5.4 micron pixels
Image Characteristics Pixel scale: 0.379 arcsec/pixel
FOV: 16.3 x 21.7 arcmin
Dome Home-Dome model HD10
10 ft diameter fiberglass motorized door and rotation
Vendor (Telescope, Camera, and Dome): Observatory Solutions, Durango, Colorado


Pic 01

Dome and telescope foundations.

Pic 02

Students from AST 4722 (Observational Techniques) visiting the dome construction in progress.

Pic 01

Telescope/pier interface plate (before painting), machined in the Physics Machine Shop.




Bug Nebula

Snowball Nebula

Saturn Nebula