Eastern Anatolia Observatory Ready to Become the Largest in Europe

Countdown to Europe's largest observatory
Countdown to Europe's largest observatory

The mirror to be installed in the Eastern Anatolia Observatory (DAG), one of the most important projects carried out by Turkey in the field of astronomy, was brought to Turkey. With its telescope with a mirror diameter of 4 meters, the Eastern Anatolia Observatory will be the largest astronomy observatory in Europe. When the DAG Project is completed, it will obtain higher quality images from the Hubble Space Telescope. With its equipment and technology, it will be 'Turkey's most sensitive ear in the world'.

Established at an altitude of 3170 meters, the Eastern Anatolia Observatory will take the title of the third observatory established at the highest altitude in the world. Since there is no other telescope of this size in its location, DAG will fill the longitude gap in the Northern Hemisphere with this feature.

WE ARE impatiently waiting for the first light

Turkish Space Agency (TUA) President Serdar Hüseyin Yıldırım, in his post on social media, said, “The 4m diameter mirror of our DAG telescope arrived in Erzurum after polishing and coating processes. If weather conditions allow, it will be transported to its final location at 3170m altitude today. We look forward to the day it gets the first light!” made statements.


Atatürk University Astrophysics Research and Application Center (ATASAM) Director and DAG Project Coordinator Prof. Dr. Cahit Yeşilyaprak also stated that they transported the 4-meter mirror to be installed in DAG with precision, and noted that the mirror was brought by a cargo plane that took off from Russia after some tests.


All optical designs of the Eastern Anatolia Observatory telescope were made by engineers in Turkey. Adaptive optics is also included in the optical technology of the telescope. In this way, observations can be made as if there is no atmosphere in the DAG. DAG will focus on infrared wavelengths as well as visible light. Thus, Turkey will have the chance to observe infrared for the first time.


The largest mirror coating unit in Europe will be set up for recoating within DAG. When the mirror coating wears off, the mirror will be removed and only passed through a special channel to reach this mirror coating system. There is no other like this design in the world.

DAG's scientific goals include star formation, solar system small-body studies, galaxy studies, cosmology studies, and planetary studies.

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