Saturday, 19 May 2012

The Leviathan Telescope

Some more images from the I-LOFAR visit. As we have mentioned, Castle Birr has a fantastic astronomical history. The Leviathan Telescope (the largest in the world from 1845 until 1917) was responsible for some great discoveries. Several well-known celestial objects were named at the eyepiece of this magnificent instrument. Examples include the Whirlpool Galaxy and the Crab Nebula. But, for today, let's just admire the old fashioned architecture of this wonderful scientific instrument.

The elevation winch and service railway at the back of the telescope.

Note the old-fashioned timber gantries.

A side view showing off the crenellations. The winch in the foreground allows the telescope to slew in azimuth (although only over a limited range).

Another view. Note the castle itself in the background.

Another close-up of the 6-foot aperture.
Don't forget to click on the images to see enlargements. Enjoy! (And have a nice weekend!)

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