Indian Astronomical Observatory (IAO) Hanle

#GS3 #Science&Technology

Located at Hanle, the Indian Astronomical Observatory (IAO)  (near Leh in Ladakh) is becoming one of the globally promising observatory sites, reveals a recent study.


According to the Department of Science and Technology, this is due to its advantages of: 

  • Clear nights
  • Minimal light pollution
  • Background aerosol concentration
  • Extremely dry atmospheric condition 
  • Uninterrupted monsoon

The research analysed Eight observatories

  • Indian Astronomical Observatory (IAO) in Hanle, Merak (Ladakh) and Devasthal (Nainital) in India, 
  • Ali Observatory in the Tibet Autonomous Region in China
  • South African Large Telescope in South Africa
  • University of Tokyo Atacama Observatory 
  • Paranal in Chile
  • National Astronomical Observatory in Mexico.

Indian Astronomical Observatory (IAO) 

  • Stands on Mt. Saraswati, Digpa-ratsa Ri, Hanle near Leh in Ladakh. 
  • It has one of the world's highest located sites for optical, infrared and gamma-ray telescopes. 
  • It is operated by the Indian Institute of Astrophysics, Bangalore.
  • The Observatory has two active telescopes: 
    1. 2.01 meter optical-infrared Himalayan Chandra Telescope (HCT) 
    2. High Altitude Gamma Ray Telescope (HAGAR).
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