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.