If you have any questions about the public open nights, please call
and leave a voice message.
Your call will be returned.
For general information, please call
848-445-8973 or 848-445-8785 (08:30 a.m. to 04:30 p.m.).
Public Observing at the
Robert A. Schommer Astronomical Observatory
Members of the Rutgers University
community and the general public are invited to observe the night sky
through the 20-inch optical telescope of the Robert A. Schommer
Astronomical Observatory on the second and fourth Thursdays of every month,
weather permitting. The observatory is open for two hours starting at
8:30 p.m. (October through March) or starting about one hour after sunset
(April through September, when it is not yet dark at 8:30 p.m.).
Observing will be canceled for
that night if the skies are cloudy at the beginning of the observing
session. Please check this web-site for the most up-to-date
Naked-eye visibility of
satellites from the Robert A. Schommer Astronomical Observatory may be found at
The Robert A. Schommer Astronomical
Observatory is located in the dome on the roof of the Serin Physics
Laboratories on the corner of Frelinghuysen Road and Allison Road on the
Busch Campus of Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey. Our address is
136 Frelinghuysen Road, Piscataway, NJ and
to our building are
available. The public can park in lot 53 (between the building and the street) or lot
53A (about one block east on the other side of Frelinghuysen Road), but should
obtain an electronic permit beforehand. To obtain the permit, follow this
link. Rutgers faculty, staff, and students do not need to obtain an
additional permit, but should only park in lots allowed by their existing
parking permits (in most cases, this does NOT include lot 53).
Enter the doors on the west end of the building (facing Allison Road)
and take the stairs (left or right sides of the lobby) or the elevator
(left side of the lobby) to the fourth floor.
Transit of Venus -- June 05, 2012
This image was taken at 08:03 p.m. EDT
through a narrow gap in the clouds
during the only few minutes that the transit was visible at the Schommer
Observatory. The dark band in the lower-left corner of the image is the
roof of the Pharmacy Building. The edge of the silhouette of Venus is
ragged because of blurring by the Earth's atmosphere -- the Sun was only
3.3 degrees above the horizon. The 20-inch telescope was stopped down
to a 4-inch aperture covered with a Baader solar filter. This
single-color image was taken through an SBIG STL-11000M camera with
a V-band (green) filter and an exposure time of 0.05 sec.
Galaxy, Messier 33 (M33)
This color image was created by combining
three images taken through blue, green, and red (B-, V-, and R-band) images
taken with the CCD camera on the 20-inch telescope of the Schommer
Please send any comments on
this page to Carlton Pryor, firstname.lastname@example.org.
This web-site was most recently
modified on October 25, 2013.