One of the most important aspects of functioning of ground-based observatories is international cooperation, which optimizes the use of technical resources, provides and enhances observational capabilities, promotes scientific exchange, and more effectively resolves complex scientific issues. The most advanced ground-based observatories are centers or hubs for bringing together scientists, engineers and expertise that lead to innovative discoveries and breakthroughs in observational astronomy. The latter is becoming very relevant from a scientific point of view, because over the next decade, observational astronomy will face many challenges, counting from the light pollution caused by urbanization and exponentially growing space debris as well as artificial satellite constellation for global internet, to the detection and study of dark matter and dark energy. Therefore, it is clear that for astronomy as a global science, it is becoming increasingly necessary to group resources (intellectual and technical) in the most advantageous places for ground-based astronomy in terms of astroclimate, location, infrastructure, etc. Here, the Assy-Turgen Observatory operated by Fesenkov Astrophysical Institute has all the above components to become one of these locations.
Over the past years, the Assy-Turgen Observatory has expanded the possibilities of monitoring and observing near-Earth and deep space objects. First of all, this was the automation of the 1.5-meter and 50-cm wide-field telescopes and their equipment with sensitive detectors, and commissioning of new prompt and robotic wide-field sensors and digital infrastructure, from simple scripts to control telescopes to high-performance computers for data processing and analysis. The idea of the Program is consonant with the speech of the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan on the transformation of Kazakhstan into a research hub.

The Goal of the Program
Development of astronomical hub (AstroHub) — a unified ecosystem combining Kazakhstani and foreign optical telescopes at Assy-Turgen Observatory, near-Earth space monitoring systems, hardware and software tools for collecting, analyzing, storing observational data, and maintaining the growth of expertise in optical mechanical instrument engineering for ground-based observatories.

Tasks of the Program
This section describes how to achieve the goal of the program through logically related, sequential tasks. The list of tasks is given: 1) measurable indicators of problem solving; 2) a brief justification of the role of each of the tasks in achieving the goal of the program and the relationship with other tasks and expected results of the program; 3) other important, in the opinion of the applicant, parameters.

In accordance with scientific and technical assignment No. 54, the following tasks should be solved:
Task 1. Development of an online monitoring complex for observatory astroclimate data, including a system for analyzing the state of the atmosphere, light pollution and related factors necessary for high-quality observations by AstroHub users.
The task is aimed at providing AstroHub participants with up-to-date astroclimatic data presenting the advantage of installing astronomical equipment at the site of the Assy-Turgen Observatory. In particular, it is planned: (1) to develop and install a robotic system based on a dedicated optical telescope — DIMM device for analyzing astroclimatic characteristics, (2) to monitor the state of the atmospheric layer above the Observatory and its seasonal variations, (3) to create and systematically update the database of astroclimatic and meteorological data of the Assy-Turgen Observatory.

Task 2. Development of protocols for software integration (data acquisition, calibration and analysis) and solutions (own control and computing tools) of AstroHub users into the software for the centralized control of telescopes of the observatory (scheduling, priorities, data access, data exchange, etc.).
To implement collaboration within the AstroHub framework, it is required to ensure interoperability and develop protocols for the exchange of observational data, algorithms and programs for their analysis, and numerical models for computer simulations. Also, users will be able to provide part of the observational time on their instruments to other groups. At the same time, all users will be given the opportunity to process data on the spot using the computing equipment of the observatory, which is especially important when it is necessary to quickly obtain the result without preliminary copying large volumes of raw data via the Internet. In both cases, it becomes necessary to work out the scheduling algorithm. This task is aimed at developing protocols for the effective implementation of these research processes within the AstroHub.

Task 3. Development of the required digital infrastructure for the operation of AstroHub: a web application that reflects the current state of the astroclimate, the status of telescopes and power supply, and weather forecasts. Development of a notification protocol for emergency situations at the observatory (gusts of wind, abrupt weather changes, problems with power supply).
To enable AstroHub users to install their own observational instruments, the observatory will provide sites with all the necessary infrastructure — a pavilion, power supply, telecommunications network, weather data supply, etc. For AstroHub users to interact with this infrastructure, it is necessary to develop appropriate protocols and software solutions. This includes, for example, the development of application programming interface (API) for client access to local weather station data on current, past (and possibly predicted) parameters (air temperature, wind speed, humidity, etc.), the development of a scheme for automatically closing domes in the event of weather worsening, while alerting relevant users. Support for protocols such as MQTT for the Internet of Things (monitoring and control of equipment by AstroHub users) should also be implemented. In addition to the API, it is also necessary to develop a user interface in the form of a web portal that displays the current meteorological and astroclimatic parameters (Task 1), power supply state, etc.

Task 4. Providing the observatory with additional hardware and software capabilities and broadband communication channels for monitoring equipment and data transmission within the AstroHub for AstroHub clients and educational institutions of Kazakhstan.
As part of this task we plan the following works: a) to connect devices of AstroHub participants into a single command bus for centralized control, b) to integrate the solar stations, power generators, uninterruptible power supplies and monitoring stations into a single system; c) an enhancement of the observatory’s data storage and computational capabilities for data processing; d) to setup the common time-service at Assy-Turgen Observatory; e) to prepare at least two sites (ports) for the installation of telescopes of interested parties; f) to carry out pre-project studies and assess the possibilities, as well as to work out recommendations for establishing a radio-relay and fiber-optic communication channel to the Assy-Turgen Observatory for the future expansion of the AstroHub capabilities.


Task 5.
Development of international agreements on data exchange, participation in joint surveillance campaigns, participation in citizen science projects. Conducting observations within the framework of international monitoring campaigns for the study of transient objects and objects of increased interest (target of opportunity).
The task involves: 1) observations within research programs for the study of transient objects and objects of increased interest (Target of Opportunity, ToO, including objects from the Goldstone Asteroid Schedule catalog); 2) observations within the collaboration of the International Asteroid Warning Network (IAWN, including IAWN observation campaigns); 3) participation in the projects of the International Occultation Timing Association (IOTA, including Citizen Science projects), in particular, in campaigns for observations of occultations of stars by asteroids; 4) development of a policy for regulating the provision of AstroHub services, data exchange and ownership of the results of scientific activities (service provision and data exchange policy) between AstroHub participants; 5) development of agreements with international groups on alert and follow-up observations of transient objects in deep space, and also participation in joint programs and grants with foreign research groups. The task is closely related to Task 4 in ensuring fast data transmission during intensive observations of transient events, as well as the results of Task 3 in assessing the current conditions and quality of the atmosphere at the observatory to select the optimal observation parameters.

Task 6. Setting up of environment, hardware and software for education and popularization of science: preparation (development) of materials and training manuals, as well as the organization of workshops, master classes, and popular lectures. Development of a web application to reflect the most important events and achievements in the field of space exploration to the public.
The task involves the creation of hardware and software environments for the education and popularization of science. First of all, to popularize astronomy in Kazakhstan it is necessary to develop materials and training manuals in Kazakh and Russian languages, which will allow to attract a wider range of astronomy enthusiasts and young people to science. Organization of workshops, and master classes to improve the quality of education by introducing the experience of foreign scientists. Adaptation of the Zeiss-1000 telescope at the Assy-Turgen Observatory for popular/scientific lectures for undergraduate and graduate students to gain high qualification. Development of training manuals for undergraduate and graduate students on modern data processing methods. The web page will be developed to inform about important AstroHub events and the achievements of its members.

Task 7. Creation of conditions for the establishment of an engineering department for instrument construction and optical and mechanical system development.
To ensure the successful operation of the AstroHub, meet the growing needs of the Assy-Turgen Observatory, support the operation of telescopes and equipment, and develop new equipment and instruments, conditions for the creation of an engineering department must be specified. This requires determining the engineering department’s needs in machine tools and equipment, software, as well as the relevant competences and qualifications of the department’s staff for scientific and technical support of the Assy-Turgen Observatory. Training for employees of departments in profiling companies in Kazakhstan (for example, LLP “Astrotechnopribor”). This Task is related to, among other activities, the development of the DIMM instrument (Task 1).