Where Most of It Began: Auckland Observatory

The Auckland Observatory is eight kilometres SE of the centre of Auckland, Latitude 36o 54’ S, Longitude 174o 47’ E at an altitude of 89 metres ASL. on the slopes of Maugakeikei. The red roofed extension housing a planetarium is a recent addition.

Auckland_Obs_1

A recent photo of the telescope at night  looking roughly west south west. The dome to the left is a recent addition.

Auckland_Obs_2 

This picture shows a view of the Edith Winstone Blackwell telescope with Grant Christie. The dome is copper over a timber framework. It’s 500mm Zeiss, installed by Kurt ottleib of Stromlo in 1966. The offset German equatorial mount is very easy to use—the only problem being the motor drive unit, installed completely according to instructions, but on the south side of the pier as is normal in the Northern Hemisphere!  The Mark I photometer with an external preamplifier is at the Cassegrain focus with a cable to the elctronic units.

Auckland_Obs_3

This shows Roger Feasey using the Mark I photometer. The device taped underneath is the A/D converter, later replaced by the photon detection system. This was taken 25 years before the picture above but note the easily replaceable tape in use.


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