The Southern Skies Star Party in 2003
is sponsoring the Bolivian National Observatory at Tarija

From 1982 -1990, Tarija was developed and used in cooperation with the Academy of Sciences, USSR to perform astrograph observations for Southern Hemisphere Astrometry and improvement of the

FOCAT-S Catalogue for its altitude,
southern exposure and clear nights.

In its period of operation from 1982-1989, Tarija compiled an immense body of work with its 4 instruments:

Expedition Astrograph Refractor: 230mm f/10
Zeiss Reflector: 600mm f/12.5
AZT Reflector: 200mm
Mitzar Reflector: 110mm

The project compiled precise positioning of over 200,000 southern stars to 11th mag in over 6,000 astroplates. Special neutral density Bright Star catalog studies to 6th mag. were conducted. The observatory’s work on astrometry of equatorial stars to 12th mag is 63% complete. In 1987, 113 Astrometric observations of Halley’s comet were conducted; as well as 10 astrometric observations of SN 1987A in the LMC.

Problem: March 1990, brought the end of Russian cooperation and funding. The observatory has meager economic support from the Bolivian Government and University of San Misael Sarancho, and lost significant instrumentation at program’s end and negligible funding to hire observatory staff.

Tarija is in desperate need of many
ordinary technical components!

  • CCD Imaging Equipment
  • Eyepieces Illuminated reticule eyepieces
  • Telrads
  • Star Atlas
  • Video Capture devices & access.
  • Solar Filters
  • Neutral Density, OIII, HA filters
  • Laptop computers
  • Drive Correction Stepper Motors
  • 120/220 format film
  • Red Lights

Objectives include:
Southern Hemisphere NEO Research.
Installation of a fetch program. Completion of equatorial star catalog. Serve as host location for southern hemisphere research available to International Organizations and Universities.

If you can, please help by donating, or have equipment you would like to contribute to the cause. All contributions are tax deductible through the StarGarden Foundation 501(c )(3) not-for-profit.

Members of the SSSP are contributing their equipment and time, training observatory staff in CCD workshops at the SSSP 2003. You do not have to attend the Star Party to help! We will gladly transport your donation to Bolivia. Contact Vic or Jen at or call 660-747-9458

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