International Scientific Optical Network and UN Basic

International Scientific Optical
Network and
UN Basic Space Science Initiative
Vladimir Agapov and Igor Molotov
Outreach seminar
in margins of
55th session of Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space
11 June 2012
International Scientific Optical Network
International Scientific Optical Network (ISON)
• Open non-government scientific project having goals
– to support existing and establishing new telescope facilities
– to enhance the international collaboration in optical observation of
celestial objects between observatories in developing nations and
scientific organization in industrialized countries
– to provide significant scientific output in 3 key areas of research:
space debris, asteroids and GRB afterglows
• Cooperation already joins 31 observation facilities of various
affiliation (Academy of Sciences, Universities, Scientific
Institutions, Private Companies) in 14 countries
• Coordinated by the Keldysh Institute of Applied Mathematics of
the Russian Academy of Sciences (KIAM) and maintained with
participation of ASC “Project-technics” and “ISON-Skolkovo”
Examples of ISON activities in developing nations
left: 40-cm telescope in Uzbekistan; center: 25-cm telescope in Moldova (top) and
CCD-camera in Vietnam (bottom); right: equipment for modernization of 60-cm
telescope in Tadjikistan is on the way, 25-cm telescope in Bolivia is ready to observe
Typical ISON telescopes:
19-cm VT-78e, 25-cm ORI-25, 40-cm ORI-40
Forms of collaboration within ISON project
• Participation in regular ISON coordinated observations
• Joint observation and data analysis campaigns, exchange
the obtained results
• Arrangement of ISON resources for observations under
specific scientific goal or program
• Providing software tools, elaborated under ISON project,
for further coordinated activities
• Installation of telescopes, elaborated under ISON project
• Modernization of non-operational obsolete telescopes
• Production of telescope under joint grant
• Education and training (including special workshops)
The most recently opened ISON observation
facility in Mexico – joint project with
Universidad Autónoma de Sinaloa
left: dome with 25-cm telescope in Cosalá, Sinaloa (Mexico);
center: the commemorative plaque
right: outreach and educational seminar at the facility;
bottom: the telescope and numerous visitors at the opening ceremony
ISON workshops
left: Oct 2009 ISON workshop participants.
The workshop took place in Andrushivka observatory, Ukraine.
right: Nov 2011 ISON workshop participants.
The workshop took place in Verbilki, Moscow region, Russia.
The UN General Assembly Resolution
62/117 (1 February 2008)
The General Assembly,
Considering, that space debris is an issue of concern to all nations,
28. Considers that it is essential that Member States pay more
attention to the problem of collisions of space objects, including those
with nuclear power sources, with space debris, and other aspects of
space debris, calls for the continuation of national research on this
question, for the development of improved technology for the
monitoring of space debris and for the compilation and
dissemination of data on space debris, also considers that, to the
extent possible, information thereon should be provided to the
Scientific and Technical Subcommittee, and agrees that international
cooperation is needed to expand appropriate and affordable strategies
to minimize the impact of space debris on future space missions;
ISON – leading international project in
observational research of space debris at
high near-Earth orbits
1704 GEO and 1585 HEO region objects were in the ISON database as of
54 new GEO and 18 HEO region fragments are already discovered in 2012
ISON maintains the largest in the world database on orbital and other
information for unique GEO space debris objects having high area-to-mass ratio
Results obtained by ISON are presenting to IADC annually
Success of the ISON project proved feasibility of creation of international
observation network and data centre (similar to the Minor Planet Centre) on
space debris information for high altitude (GEO, MEO, GTO and other HEO)
objects in full compliance with the UN General Assembly Resolution 62/217
Quantity of measurements accumulated
by ISON participating instruments
Distribution of observing GEO objects
by RAAN and inclination
ISON project presentations to STSC COPUOS
Results of GEO region artificial objects population research and proposal for
organization of cooperative international GEO space debris monitoring.
Presentation to the 44th Session of the COPUOS STSC , 12-23 February, 2007, Vienna
International scientific optical observation network (ISON) for the near-Earth space
surveillance – results of the first years of work and plans for the future.
Presentation to the 45th session of the COPUOS STSC, 11-22 February 2008, Vienna
Estimation of current status of geostationary orbit based on results of research in the
framework of ISON international project.
Presentation to the 46th session of the COPUOS STSC, 9 - 20 February 2009 , Vienna
GEO protected region: ISON capabilities to provide informational support for tasks
of spacecraft flight safety and space debris removal.
Presentation to the 47th session of the COPUOS STSC, 8 - 19 February 2010 , Vienna
Review of events occurred in geostationary region in 2010 based on data obtained by
ISON international network.
Presentation to the 48th session of the COPUOS STSC, 7-18 February 2011, Vienna.
Results of GEO and HEO space debris population research and asteroids study within
the framework of ISON international project in 2011.
Presentation to the 49th session of the COPUOS STSC, 6-17 February 2012, Vienna
ISON and BSSI - similar aims and ways
• Both BSSI and ISON are a long-term efforts for the development of
astronomy and space science through regional and international
cooperation in this field on a worldwide basis, particularly in
developing nations. Material for teaching and observing programs for
small optical telescopes were developed or recommended and
astronomical telescope facilities have been inaugurated in a number of
• 7 optical telescopes & CCD cameras and 20 planetariums are installed
in 22 countries under Official Development Assistance (ODA) program
• 25 optical telescopes, 43 CCD-cameras, various other equipment and
special software tools are installed in 14 countries (Bolivia, Georgia,
Italy, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Moldova, Mongolia, Russia, Spain,
Tajikistan, Vietnam, Ukraine, USA, Uzbekistan) under ISON project and
there are plans to start collaboration with teams in another 9 countries
(Argentina, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Brazil, Chile, Namibia, South Africa,
• Joining efforts
• Involvement of new countries (mainly
developing nations)
• Enlarging quantity of telescopes participating
in Observing Program of BSSI
• Adding new topical goals to Observing
Program of BSSI such as space debris,
asteroids, gamma ray burst afterglows etc.
• Development of an international database on
space debris

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