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UNG Takes to the Cosmos

Peggy Cozart
Photo by: Peggy Cozart

The University of North Georgia Astronomy Department is reaching for the stars. The department now contains a state-of-the-art observatory housing two new telescopes. The 2.5 million dollar project, completed in the fall of 2021, seemingly offers a limitless amount of research possibilities.

The upgrade began after the previous observatory, which had been in place for over two decades, had begun to show its age. Director of the North Georgia Astronomical Observatory, Dr. Greg Feiden, compared the previous facility to a small sheet metal shack built into a mound of dirt. The project was put into motion after pieces of the original facility became a safety hazard for students.

Dome being installed on the observatory. Photo by: Peggy Cozart

Competitively, the new facility makes UNG one of the top astronomy-based programs in Georgia. UNG now is home to one of the largest and most advanced astronomical facilities in the state, and it has the chance to offer a wide array of STEM-based majors. Fieden says that newborn astrophysics concentration is now made possible with the upgrade.

Photo of a Bubble Nebula taken at the observatory. Photo by: Ryan Broussard


Student-led research throughout the intro and advanced astronomy classes are underway, with students now being able to have hands-on experience with the equipment. The facility also offers itself to the entirety of the UNG community. Open Friday and Saturday, the observatory features a public viewing experience where you can use and interact with the equipment.

Fieden’s message to the UNG community is, “We are here, we are open and we welcome everyone to come out and experience the new facility!” Fieden says, much like the stars it observes, the future of the UNG observatory is bright! 

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UNG Takes to the Cosmos