ROCK HILL, SC (WCSC) - For the first time, South Carolina students were able to take control of a the Alvan Clark telescope from their classroom to study images of the night sky.
The South Carolina State Museum's new learning program allowed eighth graders from Saluda Trail Middle School in Rock Hill to take control of the Boeing Observatory's telescope on March 24.
That school is one of five across the state, including one in Summerville, that is part of a Boeing-sponsored pilot group.
Students remotely operated the telescope, streamed images in real-time and photographed objects like the moon and the Orion Nebula.
The program is the first of its kind in the nation and is enhancing STEM resources, according to South Carolina State Museum spokesperson AnnaKate Twitty. STEM stands for science, technology, engineering and math.
Eventually, all schools in South Carolina will have free remote access to the observatory, Twitty said.
The other middle schools involved in the program are located in Columbia, Myrtle Beach and Spartanburg.