BOOTES, the Burst Observer and Optical Transient Exploring System, is located in Southern Spain and makes use of two sets of wide-field astrographic cameras, 240 km apart. These two stations taking simultaneous images will allow astronomers to distinguish near-Earth objects, closer than 1 million ft, from more distant phenomena, thus ruling out satellite glints, head-on meteors, etc in order to study the short duration optical transient phenomena that occur in the Universe.

BOOTES provides an automated real time observing response to the detection of Gamma Ray Bursts GRBs. Error box size depending, it uses wide field cameras (WFC), ultra wide field cameras (UWFC) and narrow field cameras (NFC) attached to small robotic telescopes or the telescopes themselves.

To study GRBs it is of the utmost importance to perform prompt optical follow up observations, to detect longer wavelength transient emission associated to them. BOOTES can perform such follow ups. Its scientific objectives include:

• Simultaneous and quasi simultaneous observations of GRB error boxes.

• Detection of optical flashes of cosmic origin.

• Sky monitoring in the I, R1 & V bands.

• Monitoring of different types of objects in search of recurrent transient optical emission.

• Discovery of comets, meteors, asteroids, variable stars, novae and supernovae.

BOOTES is part, within the framework of a Spanish-Czech collaboration, of a wide ongoing effort to prepare for the ESA’s satellite INTEGRAL. The project has been now performing rapid follow up observations of events detected by BATSE, BeppoSAX, RossiXTE and the IPN, for two years. Results include:

• Predetection images: they set up upper limits for any possible precursors.

• Simultaneous images: the first was achieved last 20 February 2001, although no counterpart was detected.

• Quasi simultaneous images: i.e. GRB 000313 as shown in the picture at the right.

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