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SONG-China overview

SONG North hand shaking

China officially joined SONG in June 2009. The community reached an agreement to commit to the collaboration by promoting the SONG-China project. The project went smoothly and quickly. SONG-China now includes the following components:

  1. Building a standard SONG node: almost a identical copy of the prototype of SONG.
  2. Running a SONG node in west China (the site is to be selected among existing sites): site surveys at Delingha and Nanshan are going on.
  3. Building a customized SONG node: without high resolution spectrograph, keeping the Lucky Imaging capability for microlensing, and adding capability for wide field imaging. (This is very likely to be hosted in the Argentinian station of NAOC.)
  4. 50BiN: a low-cost multi-site photometry system for time-domain research, mainly on variable objects of all kinds contained within a sample of well-selected open clusters that best fit our hardware parameters. A number of other science goals can also be accomodated. The idea is to have such a photometry capable sub-network of SONG operating with the main network, initially in the Northern hemisphere.

The current status (as of Feb 2012) of SONG-China is the following:

  • The major components of standard SONG node is now being fabricated at NIAOT, please see the hardware page for details. Installation at the selected site is scheduled for 2013, most likely in April.
  • The first set of 50BiN telescope have been ordered from APM (Germany), hopefully will be shipped to China in summer 2012. All the instruments attached to this node have also been ordered.
  • The foundation of the telescopes at Delingha, together with the control buildings have been planned. All the buildings will be started not later than May 1 2012.
  • Most likely, the final site will be Delingha. An official approval will still be needed from SSC of SONG. Some arrangements for a site-tour will be considered around the IAU GA (Aug. 2012).
  • Two 50BiN nodes are now funded respectively by China-West Normal university (CWNU) and Nanjing University (NJU). GZU could not continue due to finance reasons. We are still looking for other 2 partners.

The current status

A monthly updated status report of SONG-China telescope and instruments manufacturing.

0 0 1 27 156 NAOC 1 1 182 14.0 96 800x600 Normal 0 false false false EN-US JA X-NONE /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0cm 5.4pt 0cm 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0cm; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:Calibri;} The kick-off meeting of China SONG telescope was held on April 27, 2010. After the period of discussion and revision, the preliminary design proposal was finished on August 13, 2010.


Telescope 3-D model with tags

Four monthes later, on Dec. 25, 2010, the CDR meeting was held on Nanjing to check the  telescope detail design and calculation from the view of feasibility, reliability, suitability and cost effective.

After CDR, telescope entered into the phase of manufacture. So far, the following work was or nearly finished:

-        Primary mirror is on the stage of milling;

-        The milling of secondary mirror has been finished, shown as following figure;


Secondary mirror after milling


-Signed the contract of large bearings for azimuth and elevation;

-Signed the contract of torque motors and corresponding amplifiers for azimuth and elevation;

-Signed the contract of encoders for azimuth and elevation;

-Signed the contract of controller(UMAC) with the U.S. Delta Tau company;

-Mechanical manufacture are going smoothly according to the schedule and this work will be finished by the end of next March;

Now, we are preparing the following contract:

-Contract of force actuators, force sensors and force controllers, which will be used to form the close-loop control of primary mirror shape with the help of S-H;

-Contract of S-H unit;

-Contract of 5-DoF hexapod, which will be used to align M2 with M1;

-Contract of echelle, CCD, Tip/tilt;


The work of the telescope will be updated periodically with the project going on this web. Please do not hesitate to contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you need further information about the telescope or have something to discuss with us.


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