AROUND SLOVAKIA

Slovak night-sky monitoring system wins at Prague innovation fair

SLOVAK science is marking yet another international achievement as researchers from the Comenius University in Bratislava received a gold medal from the 2013 INVENTO fair held annually in Prague each June. The group was hailed for their invention of an automatic night-sky monitoring system. The system, called AMOS Cam (All-sky Meteor Orbit System), was designed by Juraj Tóth of the university's Faculty of Mathematics, Physics and Informatics in co-operation with other colleagues from the school‘s Astronomical and Geophysical Observatory in Modra, in the Bratislava Region.

SLOVAK science is marking yet another international achievement as researchers from the Comenius University in Bratislava received a gold medal from the 2013 INVENTO fair held annually in Prague each June. The group was hailed for their invention of an automatic night-sky monitoring system. The system, called AMOS Cam (All-sky Meteor Orbit System), was designed by Juraj Tóth of the university's Faculty of Mathematics, Physics and Informatics in co-operation with other colleagues from the school‘s Astronomical and Geophysical Observatory in Modra, in the Bratislava Region.

“[The device] monitors the inflow of interplanetary matter to Earth in the form of meteors and meteorites, which can be in a sense viewed as messages in a bottle revealing more about the state of the solar system at the time when it appeared, as well as about its future evolution,” Tóth told the TASR newswire. The Slovak scientist added that the system can be used, for example, to calculate the trajectory and an approximate place in which a celestial body will fall. The prototype of the system has been in operation since 2007 at the Modra observatory.

Individual cameras of the device form the basis of Slovakia's meteor-monitoring network including observatories in Modra, Tesárske Mlyňany and Kysucké Nové Mesto. This year should also see more cameras installed in central and eastern Slovakia. Tests are ongoing at observatories in Važec and Rimavská Sobota. Each camera registers approximately 10,000 meteors and around 50 atmospheric light phenomena per year.

The gold medals on Invento Prague fair are awarded by an international jury, and this year a total of 49 have been given to projects form different countries, according to the Invento.cz website.

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