Joan Oró Telescope

The Joan Oró telescope (TJO) is managed by the IEEC and is currently the largest telescope in Catalonia.
It has a primary mirror of 0.8 metres and an F/9.6 Ritchey-Chrétien optical system. The TJO was built by Optical Mechanics Inc. (OMI) and is equipped with a 6.15 metre automatic dome manufactured by Baader Planetarium GmbH.

The telescope is named in honour of the biochemist Joan Oró i Florensa, one of the most relevant scientists related to the study of the origin of life. In the midst of Franco’s era, Joan Oró emigrated from Lleida to the United States to work on the research on Darwin’s theories and to answer some fundamental questions: who we are and where we come from. He worked at NASA and participated in the arrival of the first man on the Moon and in the exploration of the planet Mars. On returning to Catalonia, during the 1990s, Joan Oró and the foundation that bears his name were the main promoters of the project to build an astronomical observatory in the Montsec area.

a multi-purpose astronomical telescope

Find out all the details of the largest telescope in Catalonia



The TJO is a multi-purpose astronomical telescope and, as such, it carries out a wide variety of observations related to different scientific cases.



The TJO is equipped with two instruments: an imaging camera (LAIA) and a medium resolution spectrograph (ARES).

Control system


The TJO covers a wide variety of scientific cases, including transient astrophysical phenomena.