The Observatori Astronòmic del Montsec (OAdM) is a scientific infrastructure that is managed by the IEEC by virtue of an agreement with the Direcció General de Recerca of Generalitat de Catalunya.
It is located 1,570 meters high in the Montsec mountains, 50 km north of the city of Lleida, in the municipality of Sant Esteve de la Sarga and near Ager, in the Catalan pre-Pyrenees. This area is recognized as one of the most suitable of the European continent for astronomical observation, thanks to the combination of weather conditions and the low effect of light pollution. It is, undoubtedly, an exceptional sky.
The OAdM comprises four facilities for research in astronomy and two measurement stations. The two measurement stations are devoted to meteorological studies (Servei Meteorològic de Catalunya) and to environmental pollution (Institut de Diagnosi Ambiental i Estudis de l'Aigua - CSIC). The astronomical equipment consists of three robotic telescopes:
- The TJO (Telescopi Joan Oró): owned by the Generalitat de Catalunya and installed and managed by IEEC.
- The TFRM (Telescopi Fabra-ROA Montsec): belonging to the Reial Acadèmia de Ciències i Arts de Barcelona and the Real Observatorio de la Armada.
- XO-Montsec: belonging to the Space Telescope Science Institute, USA.
In addition, it houses a camera for the detection of fireballs and hazardous near-Earth asteroids (All-sky camera, IEEC).
The mission of the OAdM is to provide the tools to carry out cutting-edge research in astronomy as well as to provide the necessary support to exploit the facilities. Several research institutes and universities have actively contributed with scientific and technical supervision and manpower to the development of the OAdM project: the Institut d'Estudis Espacials de Catalunya (IEEC), the Universitat de Barcelona (UB), the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC), the Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC) and the Fundació Joan Oró (FJO).