In this regard, the project leader, the National Astronomical Observatory researcher of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, and the doctoral tutor Han Yanben accepted an exclusive interview with the Science Times.
Science Times: How did the cooperation between the National Astronomical Observatory and Argentina take place? Why did Alfon choose China and choose the China National Astronomical Observatory? Where is China's advantage?
Han Yanben: China-Arab cooperation has to start from more than a decade ago. One of the tasks of astrometrics is to develop a star catalogue, giving the precise position of the celestial body in space, which requires repeated high-precision observation and calculation of the celestial body to obtain, but due to historical reasons, the astronomy of the northern hemisphere countries is more developed than the southern hemisphere, many The astronomical telescope is in the northern hemisphere, so the celestial bodies in the southern hemisphere (Southern) are relatively less observed.
In the late 1980s, the Beijing Astronomical Observatory of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (predecessor of the National Astronomical Observatory) astronomical measurement laboratory envisaged the installation of China's photoelectric contours at the National University of San Juan Observatory in Argentina to carry out the South Star Table and astronomical geodynamics. Cooperative observation and research. This is mainly because the Observatory is located in the southern hemisphere and can observe the unobservable areas in our country, and the climate is dry and the atmosphere is transparent, especially on sunny days, with an average of 300 days per year. Astronomical observations hope that there are more sunny days, so it is very suitable for astronomical observations. In the process of communicating with the Afghan side, we found that the other party is also very interested in such cooperation.
Because China's optoelectronic contours were good astrometric instruments at the time, San Juan University in Argentina lacked the funds and technology to manufacture such instruments. After repeated discussions, the two sides reached an agreement on cooperation and formed the principle of cooperation between the two parties to jointly fund and share the information and results. Specifically, it is that we provide instruments and technology, and the Arab side builds an observation room and pays wages to our scientific research personnel.
This international cooperation has been jointly supported by the Department of International Cooperation of the Ministry of Science and Technology, the International Cooperation Bureau of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Ministry of Science and Technology of Argentina. At the end of 1990, the instrument was shipped to Argentina for installation and commissioning. Observations began in early 1991, and the accuracy of observation and the amount of data were better than in China. The cooperation has achieved good results, completed four South Star catalogues, and published several research papers in internationally renowned academic journals.
As I said earlier, satellite laser ranging is a very meaningful work. In the late 1990s, the two sides began to discuss cooperative observation and research on satellite ranging. This plan is supported by the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Ministry of Science and Technology of China and Afghanistan.
At the end of 2000, Academician Ai Guoxiang, Director of the National Astronomical Observatory, and I were invited to visit San Juan University and signed a formal agreement on long-term cooperative observation and research on SLR between China and Afghanistan. The instrument we developed was completed at the end of 2003. Due to the economic crisis in Argentina, the observation room built by the Arab side was basically completed by mid-2005. Our SLR was shipped to Argentina in September 2005. The technicians of our Institute of Science and Technology and our platform immediately installed and commissioned the instrument in Argentina. At the end of February 2006, the instrument was commissioned and began to observe. The data quickly reached the international satellite laser ranging. The organization and the requirements of the International Earth Rotation Service Organization, the instrument was officially numbered: 7406. This is the first medium-sized astronomical instrument operated by China abroad.
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