Shane Observer Information

To see the Deadlines and the Most Recent call for proposals please see Calls for Proposals, Deadlines, and Schedules page.

Call for Proposals

Shane, APF and Nickel Telescopes Mountain Hosted Schedule

Proposal Basics

Call for Proposals for the Shane 3m telescope at Lick Observatory. Lick Observatory’s scientific impact manifests itself in several ways:

  • Lick and the Shane 3m telescope can undertake observing programs that require substantially more observing time than is available at 8-10m telescopes.
  • Lick provides a testbed for new and improved technologies, both in instrumentation and in observing techniques.
  • Graduate students and postdocs can write their own observing proposals and lead their own programs, gaining valuable experience in scientific planning and leadership.
  • Proposals for large and/or long-term programs on the Shane 3-m telescope are encouraged.
  • Guidelines for the structure of such proposals can be found at:

Proposals for use of the 3-m Shane reflector will be submitted online in a process very similar to that used for UC Keck proposals.

Proposal Submittal Instructions

Submitting an application is a two-step process: on-line creation of a proposal cover sheet and uploading a pdf-format file with the Scientific Justification and other support materials.

Step 1: Create a proposal cover sheet and be assigned a Proposal ID#. Go to the web page below, enter the information required for the form, submit the form and note the assigned proposal ID#, which is required in Step 2.

Step 2: Prepare a file with the following sections:

1. Scientific Justification (2-page limit),
2. References and Figures (2-page limit),
3. Targets and Exposures,
4. Supplementary Observations Required from other Observatories,
5. Technical Remarks,
6. Path to Science from Observations,
7. Status of Previously Approved 3-m Programs, including a complete list of publications that have resulted from your previous observing time at Lick over the past 5 years.

Create a pdf-format of this document and upload it at the submission web page:

Graduate Student Applications

Graduate Student Applications: Graduate students are eligible to apply for 3-m observing time. A letter must accompany each proposal from the faculty sponsor stating the student is qualified to carry out the project. Please email the letter to, and be sure the subject line says “Graduate Student Shane Proposal.”

Graduate student observing projects requiring a large number of nights or nights spread over several semesters must be thesis-related; the first proposal must be accompanied by a letter of support from the student’s thesis adviser.

Remote Observing

Remote observing is supported for the Shane Telescope. With the exception of UC Merced and UC San Francisco, all UC campuses maintain at least one remote observing room. General information and caveats for those considering remote observing may be found here:

For details about reserving one of these rooms on your campus for your Lick observations, please contact your local astronomy (or physics) department or the support astronomers at Lick (email to

Lick observers (astronomers, postdocs, students) are not permitted to observe remotely until they have completed an on-site checkout at Lick Observatory plus a separate remote-observing checkout. These are described further in the Lick remote observing policy page:
Please contact the Lick support astronomers ( to arrange the necessary checkouts.

Other useful links:

Shane 3-m Telescope Manual:

Guidelines for preparing 3-m proposals:

Instruments available are:

Kast Spectrograph – Dual channel optical spectrometer:

Hamilton Spectrograph – High-resolution optical echelle spectrometer:

Natural and Laser guide star adaptive optics systems

Adaptive Optics – The AO system for the Shane 3m (known as ShaneAO and ShARCS) is available for the general user community. Note: Proposals which use the Natural Guide Star mode are particularly encouraged due to the fact that the reliability and power available in the current dye laser is low. Operations with Laser guide star will be done on a best effort basis. Staff limitations at Mount Hamilton may limit the number of Laser Guide Star nights that can be scheduled.

Links to information about Shane AO and ShARCS are the following:

NOTE: LATE PROPOSALS will NOT be accepted. Please contact Deputy Director ( for more information.