Tracking SOFIA, the flying telescope
SOFIA (N747NA) tracked via RadarBox.com
SOFIA, a modified Boeing 747SP with a giant telescope, often known as the "Flying Telescope," is tracked weekly by RadarBox.com on its observations flights over North America and Europe. Continue reading our blog to learn more about SOFIA and how to track it on RadarBox.com!
SOFIA is a Boeing 747SP aircraft modified to carry a 2.7-meter (106-inch) reflecting telescope (with an effective diameter of 2.5 meters or 100 inches). Flying into the stratosphere at 38,000-45,000 feet puts SOFIA above 99 percent of Earth’s infrared-blocking atmosphere, allowing astronomers to study the solar system and beyond in ways that are not possible with ground-based telescopes. SOFIA is made possible through a partnership between NASA and the German Space Agency at DLR.
NASA Boeing 747SP (N747NA) - AirTeamImages.com
NASA photo / Jim Ross, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
Carla Thomas/NASA, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
SOFIA is designed to observe the infrared universe. Many objects in space emit almost all their energy at infrared wavelengths and are often invisible when observed with visible light. In other cases, celestial clouds of gas and dust block the light emitted by more distant objects, but infrared energy pierces through these clouds. The only way to learn about these objects is to study the infrared light they emit.
Dylan O’Donnell; Right: NASA/SOFIA/J. Bally et. al
Tutorial on how to track SOFIA (N747NA) on RadarBox.com
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