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Advances in Astronomy
Volume 2010 (2010), Article ID 171569, 9 pages
Research Article

From TORTORA to MegaTORTORA—Results and Prospects of Search for Fast Optical Transients

1Special Astrophysical Observatory of Russian Academy of Sciences, Nizhnij Arkhys 369167, Russia
2Arkhyz Branch, Institute for Precise Instrumentation, Nizhnij Arkhys 369167, Russia
3Astronomy Department, Bologna University, 40126 Bologna, Italy
4School of Physics, National University of Ireland, University Road, Galway, Ireland

Received 28 June 2009; Accepted 12 January 2010

Academic Editor: Joshua S. Bloom

Copyright © 2010 Grigory Beskin et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


To study short stochastic optical flares of different objects (GRBs, SNs, etc.) of unknown localizations as well as NEOs it is necessary to monitor large regions of sky with high-time resolution. We developed a system consisting of widefield camera with field of view of 400–600 sq.deg. which uses TV-CCD with 0.13 s temporal resolution to record and classify optical transients, and a fast robotic telescope aimed to perform their spectroscopic and photometric investigation just after detection. Such two-telescope complex, combining wide-field camera TORTORA and robotic telescope REM, operated from May 2006 at La Silla ESO observatory. Some results of its operation, including first high time resolution study of optical transient accompanying GRB and discovery of its fine time structure, are presented. Also, prospects for improving the efficiency of such observations are given, and a project of a next generation wide field monitoring system, the MegaTORTORA, is described.