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Green Bank Observatory at #AAS243

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2024b Call for Proposals

Proposal Call

The Green Bank Observatory (GBO) invites scientists to participate in the Semester 2024b Call for Proposals for the Green Bank Telescope (GBT). 

The submission deadline for Semester 2024b proposals is Wednesday, 31 January 2023, at 22:00 UTC (17:00 EST).

Virtual Proposal Planning Office Hours will be held January 24 and 25.


Post Secondary Student Opportunities

The Green Bank Observatory teams up with the National Radio Astronomy Observatory to offer funded research opportunities for undergraduate students, graduate students and post-docs. We also support other opportunities like job-training apprenticeships, and co-ops as funding allows.

Summer Research Experience for Undergraduates

We have held a summer student research program since the beginning of the Observatory in 1959!  Undergraduate students spend 10-12 weeks on site participating in an astronomy, engineering or computer science research project. The project may involve any aspect of astronomy, including original research, instrumentation, telescope design, astronomical site evaluation or astronomical software development.  The program runs from 10-12 weeks over the summer, from late May to mid-August. At the end of the summer, participants present their research results as a short talk and submit a written report. Often, these projects result in publications in scientific journals. Financial support is available for students to present their summer research at a meeting of the American Astronomical Society, generally at the winter meeting following their appointment.

Besides their research, students take part in other activities, including a number of social events and excursions, as well as an extensive summer lecture series which covers aspects of radio astronomy and astronomical research. Students, may in their application materials also indicate a willingness to participate in PING, an opportunity to mentor rising ninth grade students who will be on site for 2 weeks.

We accept and review applications in conjunction with the NRAO summer student program. You can find more information about the GBO program here, and see this website for information on the overall NRAO program, and application.

Physics Inspiring the Next Generation: Exploring the Cosmos with Green Bank Observatory

The Physics Inspiring the Next Generation (PING): Investigating the Cosmos with Green Bank Observatory program engages traditionally underrepresented minorities in science and engineering astronomy, engineering or computer science research at the Green Bank Observatory.

Much like our Summer Student Program, PING Undergraduate Internships provide stipends to undergraduate students for an 10-12 week experience at the Green Bank Observatory. Selected students will conduct research with a scientist/mentor, participate in all research and social activities at the Observatory. The twist to PING is that selected undergraduates will take a two week pause in their research to serve as mentors for  rising 9th-graders at the PING Summer Camp. PING internships are designed to broaden students’ skill sets, opening the doors for future employment and academic opportunities.  Applications for PING internships are accepted through the NRAO Summer Student Program portal

Grote Reber Doctoral Fellowship Program

The Grote Reber Doctoral Fellowship Program enables Ph.D. students in the final years of their thesis to conduct research at one of the NRAO sites or at the GBO site under the supervision of an Observatory advisor. The program is jointly sponsored by the Observatories and by the student’s home university. The program supports thesis projects in radio astronomy, radio instrumentation, or computational techniques.

Student Research Opportunities

Early engagement in authentic STEM research motivates students to enter into and persist on a STEM path toward becoming a STEM professional, and the Green Bank Observatory provides many opportunities for students to practice science and engineering. Some require your presence onsite, but we also have online opportunities. If you are an undergraduate or graduate student seeking a paid experience, please visit this page to learn more about opportunities for you.

Pocahontas County Science Fair

The Green Bank Science Center hosts the annual county-wide science fair for students in grade 3 and up. We’ll visit your school and help students design science and engineering experiments. On Fair Day, students spend the whole school day at the Observatory and participate in hands-on activities and demos, as well as having their projects judged of course!

Radio Astronomer for a Day – Grades 5+

What sets a scientist apart is that they tackle questions that don’t yet have answers. You can’t just “google it” when you are doing science. School groups and youth groups of all kinds and ages may visit the Observatory for an overnight stay or participate virtually. Conduct observations with a working radio telescope! For in-person visits, we supplement the program with tours and hands-on activities as well. This program meets NGSS Nature of Science standards.
Program cost: Free!
Room & board: Costs vary, contact gro.y1709037163rotav1709037163resbo1709037163bg@sn1709037163oitav1709037163reser1709037163
For more information visit our field trips page.

Skynet Junior Scholars

Sharing the Universe with youth. That’s what Skynet Junior Scholars is all about. Youth Leaders and Educators sign up for Skynet Junior Scholars (SJS) and can then enroll students in an SJS Club. That’s when the fun begins!

Leaders and youth gain access to research grade telescopes around the world including a 20 Meter Radio Telescope here in Green Bank! Through a series of fun observational astronomy activities, you can take images and radio data, do experiments, earn online badges, and participate in research projects like tracking asteroids. Collaborate with others via our online forum and team projects. All the learning and observing is online, so what are you waiting for?

Visit the website to learn more

image of centaurius A
Centaurus A imaged and processed by SJS member Surfer9

Pulsar Science Collaboratory

The Pulsar Science Collaboratory (PSC) is a joint project between the Green Bank Observatory and West Virginia University (WVU), funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF). The goal of the PSC  is to give high school students, early college students and their teachers experience doing real research, all while helping pulsar astronomers analyze mountains of data to search for new pulsars!

basic image of a pulsar
Basics of a Pulsar CREDIT: Bill Saxton, NRAO/AUI/NSF

Would you like to join the team? Twice each academic year we hold a six-week online course to prepare you to be diligent researchers. Students, teachers and professors can sign up. Once you pass muster you will be granted access to “raw” data, and the research begins. Active teachers and students may apply to summer camp and attend annual capstone events as well. We have a dedicated website for the project. Learn more and apply to become a PSC member!

Physics Inspiring the Next Generation: Exploring the Cosmos Summer Camp

PING began as collaboration between the National Society of Black Physicists (NSBP), the Green Bank Observatory (GBO) and Associated Universities, Inc. (AUI) to expose traditionally underrepresented minorities to science and engineering with a focus on physics and radio-astronomy. Launched in 2014, the the PING program focuses on multiple levels of the physics and astronomy pipeline, and includes a two-week summer camp that engages middle school students in physics and astronomy.

PING Summer Camp. Rising 9th-graders will attend camp for 12 days in 2024, and will be immersed in the research activities of Green Bank Observatory. Students will work in small teams supported by an undergraduate student mentor and a staff scientist (astronomer, physicist, engineer, etc.) to conduct research by observing the universe with a 40-foot diameter radio telescope. Supplemental educational activities, including bench experiences building electronic circuits, and coding activities complement the primary research theme and enhance our engaging atmosphere. In addition, fun group activities like star gazing, games, hiking, and talent-share sessions (where mentors teach campers anything from a new language to origami) will take place to promote community building and the overall camp experience.

Applications are due May 27th, 2024. For more information, including application instructions, check out the website below!

The program targets specifically two national initiatives, My Brother’s Keeper which is working to address the education needs of young men of color, and a second effort to promote interest in science among girls.  However, all current 8th-graders (rising 9th-graders) are welcome to apply!

Questions about the PING program?  Please contact ude.o1709037163arn@t1709037163niase1709037163ds1709037163

WV Governor’s STEM Institute

Green Bank Observatory hosts the WV GSI for 60 talented 8th graders from around the state who love science, engineering and math. This two-week residential program engages students in radio astronomy research, STEM explorations, outdoor activities and community, all set within an internationally renowned federal research center (the Green Bank Observatory). Applications are submitted to the WV Department of Education. We also seek teachers and undergraduate student mentors to help lead this program. For more information about the application process and links visit:

GBT on cover of Nature Astronomy

Image: Futselaar/ASTRON/NSF/NRAO/GBO. Cover design: Bethany Vukomanovic.