JCMT and UKIRT Closing

Sad news that two of the telescopes atop Mauna Kea will be losing funding. Word comes from Tom on his blog Pacific View

• extend operation of JCMT to end September 2014, to allow for completion of the agreed science programme for the SCUBA-2 instrument on the JCMT

• cease STFC support for the operation of UKIRT from end September 2013, a year after the completion of its current survey programme

These shutdowns have been threatened for some time. It is disheartening to learn that the worst outcome is now reality.

Sunset Behind UKIRT
UKIRT opening for a night of observing atop Mauna Kea

Author: Andrew

An electrical engineer, amateur astronomer, and diver, living and working on the island of Hawaiʻi.

One thought on “JCMT and UKIRT Closing”

  1. Thanks for passing the news on, Andrew. I’m in the UK right now for the UKIRT Board meeting and a UKIDSS workshop and you wouldn’t believe how many pissed off astronomers there are. For your readers, the response to the STFC announcement is here:


    and yes, it really is only 100K Sterling to keep UKIRT open for another year from Sept 2013 ’til Sept 2014. The decision clearly has nothing to do with STFC finances, even they could find that money behind the couch. It has to be a political decision and that is much harder to overturn.


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