JATObservatory 
Photos
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Telescope  Photos
Power Layout    
Network Layout
Dome Geometry

The Observatory 
Computerized Control
Log Book  
User's Manual   

(Updated on 07/11/2015)

  The images below show the general construction sequence and seemly never ending ongoing upgrades. 
Scroll through the images for a detailed  peek inside  finished observatory. 
 


Hmm..this looks like a great spot to build an observatory..except for the snow and that swing set thingy..(1/03) 
The same spot a year later, and there it sits, covered with snow.

 


Here the location of the observatory is marked with white paint. The orange paint marks the location of the underground cable and satellite TV coax lines. This location provides the best access to the sky. The fun part  was the relocation of the wooden swing, slide set that used to be near by. The wireless Davis weather sensors (not shown) has also been installed near by. (3/18/03)


The solar panel has been installed, now I have power for my hole in the ground! The panel still needs to be aligned to true south. The form for the pier can be seen in the foreground. The
concrete has not been poured because the ground is still so wet and I have not received the pier mounting plate yet.. (3/22/03)


Since the solar panel didn't come with a mounting bracket one was made from angle brackets purchased from the local Home Depot..


The mounting head was cannibalized from an old Primestar direct to home satellite dish. Using this head simplified the elevation adjustment.  The is adjusted twice a year in order to get the maximum amount of sunlight since the Sun is higher in the sky during the summer months and lower in the winter. Using a socket and a ratchet  on the upper right bolt makes the adjustment a 2 minute job. The other nice feature of the Primestar head is it mounts on a standard corner fence post which is cemented into the ground. The post is beefy enough to support the panel, even in a strong wind.


A view down the hole.  The finished hole will be 36"  deep by 18" square.. The sides still have to have some dirt removed  in order to match the wooden form sitting on top. Also the water will be pumped out before the
concrete is poured.  The bottom of the hole will aslo be  dug out to form a footer. Nice boots, huh?(3/23/03).


The pressure treated deck frame is finally done. Now if the ground would just dry out, I could mix up the  bags of
concrete for the pier foundation. The ground is so wet the hole gets the water pumped out daily. The single blue flag marks true north. I will use this to align the pier base. The other flags are the underground coax lines. (4/12/03)


The pier base is poured, and the base plate has been installed. (4/15/03)


The base plate is level and aligned to true north. (4/15/03)


Covered and waiting for the
concrete to set and cure. (4/15/03)


The decks all done. The synthetic decking was purchased from the Home Depot. (4/19/03)


Cement pier with form and supports removed. The left side was trimmed a little more to ensure the pier is isolated from vibrations of the floor. (4/19/03)  The 2nd picture shows the adjustable height pier installed with a rubberized mat at the base. The mat seals the gap between the pier base and the floor, but transmits no vibrations to the telescope.


Unassembled observatory stacked in the garage. A week ago there was a car in here!  This is pretty much how the observatory was transported home in the back of a U-Haul. Blankets were used to cover the parts during transport so they would not be damaged. There was some minor damage but that was fixed with a fiber glass repair kit and touch-up paint. Hey those boots look familiar. (4/16/03)


It took my wife and I a couple of  hours to assemble and align the panels (I think I was slowing her down). "There sure are a lot of nuts and bolts in this bag!"  A neighbor helped us get the dome on top.  No hatches, motors or power source yet, but the dome rotates freely with a push of the hand.. (4/19/03)


Here is a view from the back. It shows the 3 solar panels and the 3 locker panels.  The large solar panel is used to charge the two 100 amp hour batteries (note the power cable going to center locker panel).  The dome rotation motor as  well as the telescope, cameras, laser, 1200 watt inverter, USB hub, oscillating fan and florescent lights are feed from this power source.  The second solar panel  up (mounted level with the bottom of the hatch) is used to charge the battery for the front and top hatch motor and powers the wireless shutter control board.. The last one (silver circle with the blue center) is actually part of a self contained vent. During the day the fan in the vent is driven by the small blue solar panel. The solar panel also charges a battery that supplies power to the fan at night. The fan will supposedly run for 48 hours on a fully charged battery (personally I doubt it). (4/27/03)


Night shot of the hatches open. The red glow is coming from the 12 volt DC florescent  light mounted just inside the door on the right. This shot also gives an idea of the amount of  local light pollution. (6/26/04)


The interior of the observatory bathed in red light (this picture is over exposed..it's really not that bright in there).  (6/20/04)


Here the Meade 10" LX200GPS sits polar mounted on the polished aluminum Milburn wedge (which is currently covered with finger prints). The Meade ETX90EC guider scope can be seen piggy backed ( hanging down which is really the top side of the scope). Also visible are the cables for the dew heaters. The cables are covered with Flexi-Tube. This prevents the cables from becoming tangled during scope movement. Sticking up on the top are the counter weights used to balance the scope.

The dome does a great job of  blocking light from street and porch lights. Ursa Major (the Big Dipper) seen from inside the darkened observatory. (6/26/04).


Here the little guy is hang'in out with "Lucy". In this picture the scope is configured for Sun spot observing. You can see the white light glass solar filter perched on the front. While this filter
produces natural color views of the sun, no surface details other than sunspots are visible. (Note the finder and guide scope remained covered to protect them from the sun).

 


DewBuster heater control box  This box controls when the heater strips on the main scope's corrector plate, the Short Tube80  and eyepiece turns on and off. The observer sets the number of degrees above the ambient air temperature they wish to have the scope's optics. Setting and maintaining this delta temperature keeps dew from forming on the optics.

 
CCD camera control boxes are attached to the adjustable height pier.  The Pictor 416XT control box (keypad) sits above the Starlight Express MX7-C USB interface unit. The MX7-C  camera is just above the Pictor control box.


A view of 2 of the 3 "locker panels" that serve as a storage area for CCD cameras, eyepieces, focuser and solar filter. The folded-up white thing is a full scope and pier cover. The Dew shield is also stored here, along  with the telescope's counter  weights. The bottles contain Dr. Clay Sherrod's cleaning solution used to keep the telescope optics all clean a shiny.
  The storage bins contain all the other things needed inside the observatory. Wrenches, flashlight, laser pointing pen, bug spay! The flat area on top of the box  is used as an eye-piece tray during observing sessions. Each wall has been marked with it's compass direction. The thermometer is on the west wall.


This is the top section of the center "locker panel". It houses the computer that is used to control the telescope, dome rotation, CCD camera and image processing.  Directly to the left of the monitor  is the solar charge regulator. This regulates the voltage and current from the 110 watt solar panel that is used to charge the observatories batteries. It also controls power to the  telescope and dome motors,  as well as all other DC powered equipment.  Above  the regulator is one of  the four 12 volt DC power distribution points. On the center of the ceiling of  this locker panel is the Belkin USB to serial converter, that allows the TheSky software  to control the  scope. Another  DC distribution point is just to the right. The image on the monitor was taken at the observatory. It is M42, better known as the Orion Nebula.


Here is the  lower section of the center "locker panel". It contains the two 100 amp deep cycle batteries (center black boxes). The 1200 watt (2400 watt peak) AC inverter is on the bottom right. It is used to provide emergency 110 volt AC power to the observatory. When switched on it  is powered by the deep cycle batteries.   Above the inverter sits the uninterruptible power supply (UPS). In case of an AC power failure the computer, monitor and Canon 10D digital SLR will automatically be switched over to the UPS external  battery (not shown). The  UPS is capable of providing power for approx 1/2 hour. The vertical black box  on the right with AC plug is one of two remote wireless  cut-off switches. This one is used to stop the scope in case of a run-a-way condition that could result in damage to the scope or accessories mounted on it. It is used when the observatory is under remote computer control. The switch is activated via a key fob.  The second switch (not shown) is used to re-boot the PC should it hang during a remote session. On the far left side is 10 amp 12 volt DC power supply. It's primary function is to supply power to the dew heaters. It can also be used as an auxiliary source of power for dome rotation, should the dome's separate battery run low on power. The black box below it is used to switch in the power supply to the domes motors.


The grey box is the dome control box. It contains the battery, the motor, the interface to a small solar panel to charge the battery and the computer interface board for the dome control. The two LEDs  indicate when power is being  supplied to the box and when the dome is enabled for remote control. The toggle switch enables power. A second switch out of view on the side of the box controls the remote computer interface enable function. The pendant for manual control is hanging from the right side of the box.  It is attached to a 10 foot cord which allows use from any position inside the dome. The brown box  is the Davis wireless weather station receiver. This box gathers data from the wireless sensors located outside the observatory. The data is transmitted to a remote computer inside the house once every 15 minutes via a serial connection. It is then uploaded to the internet and displayed at the top frame of the weather page on this website. Weather info can also be displayed on any computer connected to the observatories local network.  The fan is used in the summer time to cool the operator.  The green and orange markings on the wall are used to visually verify dome alignment. The horizontal mark (is on the dome as it rotates) depicts the commanded range of error after a computer controlled slew. If the two vertical marks line up, there was no error in the commanded position. There  marks are located at 0, 45, 90, 135, 180, 225,  and 315 degrees.


This  box is located above the dome control box when the dome is in the home position (it rotates with the dome). It contains the control circuit boards, battery  and solar panel interface for the top hatch. The front hatch also gets its power from the this box, but has it's own control board and switch. As the note states, the hatches must be open and close in order or the hatches will be damaged. Since this image was taken a wireless remote controlled system has been installed. When used the remote system will open and close the hatches in the correct sequence in order to prevent damage. The two analog  meters monitor the solar panel and battery voltage for the hatches.

 3 analog Radio Shack meters are used to display: Main solar panel voltage, main battery voltage,  and dome rotation  voltage.  (They are mounted directly below the dome control box.) The meters for dome rotation  and main battery voltage have been modified to include red LEDs inside so the display can be read at night.  The dome rotation display is only active and illuminated when the dome power switch  (located on the grey control box above) is switched to the on position. (No LED was installed in the solar panel meter since it does not output voltage at night.)


Screen shot from the Weather PC display. Clear skies and no moon, life is good! This software resides on a remote computer. The package is also used to provide the weather on this webpage. When the yellow and aqua bars on the top row are at the same level, dew begins to form. (The actual screen display is of course clearer than the one displayed here).


These pictures show the anemometer, rain gauge, temperature, barometer and humidity sensors used to monitor the weather conditions outside the observatory. The sensors are just in back of the observatory (they have since been moved to a new location, the lightning detector now occupies to this spot). Power is supplied via a battery that is recharged by a small solar panel. All the data for the sensors are relayed by a wireless transmitter contained with in the bottom of the rain gauge to both the observatory and a LCD weather display panel inside the house.. A closer look at the picture on the right reveals a B&W security camera. This camera is also used from time to time to transmit pictures to the JATO-cam page.


This is the south end (back) of the Milburn wedge. The 4 inch LCD display is used as a monitor for video and digital cameras or the electric eyepiece when they are attached to the main telescope or guider scope. The black hand-box for the adjustable height pier can be seen on the left side of the wedge.


On the left is another shot of the Milburn Wedge as it sits on the top of the Pier-Tech 2 adjustable height pier. The CCD camera interface box can be seen on the right of the pier. The T-handle is used to adjust the latitude angle of the wedge. The circular knob above the camera control box is the Azimuth adjustment.

In the right picture, the pier sits at it lowest height, this puts the eye-piece at a level that is comfortable for even the smallest astronomer.  The rubber mat at the base of the pier is used to cover the cement pier base. It also does a very good job of sealing the gap between the concrete and the deck. The gap is required in order to prevent vibrations when the dome rotates or when people walk inside the observatory from being transmitted to the pier and to the telescope. These vibrations would show up in the eyepiece as well as ruin any images taken with the cameras.


Here is the 12 volt DC red and white florescent light. The light is wired so only one tube is illuminated at a time.. The right side tube is tinted red so the observers night vision is not lost. The front hatch  motor and interface box can be seen above and to the right of the florescent light. The observatory door is just to the right of the light.


Black & White wireless video camera with LED illumination for night vision mode. This camera is used to monitor the telescope during remote operations. The camera connects to a selector box that allows up to 4 camera outputs to be displayed. The selector box is connect to the input of the video processing PC on the network. The is one of  the three cameras that are  installed to monitor the telescope's operation and provide security for observatory. Two internal cameras are used to monitor the telescope in case of cable wrap or "runaway slews". The third camera is an outdoor camera that provides a view from the roof of the house. All 3 cameras are also capable of night vision mode. The link below shows the external camera and one internal  camera (alternating 5 second views) while the scope and dome slew 180 degrees. 
SLEW  MOVIE (approx 6.5 megs).  The internal cameras also upload still images to this website every 60 seconds minutes.


These still pictures were captured from the 2 internal video monitoring cameras inside the observatory during night time remote operations.
 


The D-Link 4 port USB hub is mounted to the side of the adjustable height pier (double sided tape is a wonderful thing!). The hub is used to connect to the imaging cameras (Starlight Express MX7C, Meade DSI-Pro imager, Canon 10D Digital SLR or the SBIG ST-2000XM. Sometimes one of these ports are used to power a USB notebook light.

 This summer the humidity became a problem in the observatory, so a 30 pint dehumidifier was installed. A permanent drain hose was connected using a brass quick disconnect and routed outside the observatory. This was done so I would not have to remember to empty the water tray.

 It quickly became apparent the dehumidifier's built in controller was inadequate. It was replaced with a IGS-030  humidity controller that connects to a remote switch that plugs into an AC outlet. The dehumidifier then plugs into the remote switch. The controller supports both a daytime and nighttime setting. The dehumidifier's controller and fan are set to high. The controller well cycle the dehumidifier on and off based on the settings selected. A photo sensor on the unit determines if it's daytime of night time.

 This data plot covers a 24 hour period from  midnight to midnight, after the IGS-030 humidity controller was installed. The inside humidity is held to approximately 50% when the dome is closed, even when the outside humidity was 100% because it was raining for 16 straight hours!
Legend: Red = Inside Humidity    Green = Outside Humidity    Blue = Outside Temp     Yellow = Inside Temp


 One of the computers on observatory network used for remote operations. This one resides in the familly room.  The two emergency RF cut-off switches are at the top corners of the monitor. the one (on right) is used to shut down the telescope by killing DC power to the telescope. The other (left side) is used to re-boot the PC in the observatory should it hang or stop responding to the remote desktop software. If the computer is rebooted all systems in the observatory can be restarted from the remote location. If the scope is shut down via the RF switch, the scope will loose alignment and must be reset to its home position manually. There is also a wireless emergency DC power off switch near the sliding glass door. That switch shuts down all DC power in the observatory, which will stop any dome rotation and scope movement. The box on top of the monitor is used to display the video feeds from the remote surveillance cameras. The box is set to switch between the cameras every 5 seconds. Currently the video can only be displayed on one PC, this one. 

It should be noted that this computer resides in the family room. When it is not being used to control the observatory it is commonly used by my family to play a addictive video game that requires defending our planet from hordes of space invading chickens.


A Boltek StormTracker Lightning Detector has been mounted on a roof near the observatory. The detector is capable of  detecting lightning strikes within a 300 mile radius of the observatory. The data is uploaded to this website every 60 seconds. The detector is enclosed in the cylinder at the top of the PVC tube. The assembly is made completely from PVC tubing. All the components were purchased from the local Home Depot and Sears Hardware stores, it contains no metal hardware (except for the lag bolts used to secure it to the building). The detector is attached to the tubing using nylon nuts and bolts. The detector is connected to a receiver on a PCI card installed in the observatory's weather station computer. The two components are connected via a 100 ft standard Ethernet cable. One of the observatory's security camera's can be seen just to the left of the satellite dish.


This screen copy shows the PC Remote Control program  used to remote control the shutters on dome. This system was put in place because when purchased  the original shutters while motorized didn't support remote computerized control. After being quoted a price of approx $5K by the hardware manufacturer for the parts to upgrade the current shutter system to wireless computerized control, I figured I could do it myself for a fraction of their quoted price (about $200).  The image in the center of the screen is from a Weather-CAM that can be position to monitor the dome. (The camera can also be controlled from the Internet). The image is the upper left corner is from one of the Black & White  low light security cameras inside the dome. The images from these camera are broadcast to the net in 60 second intervals.  The PC Remote Control program and both cameras can be accessed from any PC on the observatory's network providing real-time video.

 
The wireless 434 MHz  receiver/decoder  is mounted in a project box and sits on top of  the factory upper shutter control box. The rubber antenna can be seen sticking up (top right). The control box rotates with the dome and get its power from the 12 volt battery  inside the factory shutter control box below.  A solar charge regulator (yellow box)  was added to control the charging of the battery by the solar panels. A 12 volt cigarette light type outlet was installed in case of a dead shutter control battery. In the case of a dead battery a "jump" is provided from another 12 volt DC  source within the observatory. and is plugged into the outlet. This will supply power to open or close the shutter. It can also be used to provide a night time charge to the battery if needed.


A second solar panel was added to insure the shutter control battery receives an adequate charge after the installation of the wireless shutter control system. The second panel was the original factory panel used to recharge the original dome rotation battery.


UPDATE: The two Sirius solar panels were replaced with a single 11 watt panel. The original panels only produced about 2 watts each, for a total of 4 watts. The large panel was needed to keep the shutter battery charged. Part of the dead battery issues were related to the fact the my do-it-yourself wireless receiver system is also powered by the shutter battery and the receiver is on all the time. The newer Sirius systems use a different solar panel that I believe produces a bit more power.


The new panel was mounted by bolting the original Sirius mounting brackets together.


 This image  shows the Remote Shutter Control  Box. This box contains 2 encoder/transmitter boards and  provides manual and computerized control of the shutters over the 434 MHz wireless link. The box is mounted inside the house and has a rubber ducky antenna mounted on top (not shown).  For a more info on the remote control of the shutters click here.
 

  
This is my home grown Visual Basic application  to control the major functions of the observatory. The GUI was originally written to control the dome's shutters. I felt the free PC Remote Control software was rather clumsy to use so I wrote my own.  The GUI gets regular modifications whenever needed in to keep up with the observatory's updates. The GUI on the right is version 1.1. You can see how it has changed. The labels on the buttons of the newer GUI are clearer than what is depicted in the screen shot here.


Here the Boltwood Cloud/Rain detector is seen attached to the lower roof. The detector is mounted on the southeastern corner of the house. It is angled southwest at approx 10 degrees. This allows the rain to roll off the sensor plate and keeps the heater from having to work harder to dry the moisture. The observatory is located out of frame of this picture to the left.


 A screen shot of the detector's factory software on the left shows the sky's condition along with the sky temperature, ambient temp and sensor temp. The picture on the right shows the detectors data in real-time. The data is updated on the website every 5 minutes.


 In addition to the cloud sensor, cameras are also used at the observatory for visual conformation of  the sky conditions.  Cameras also assist in calibration of the cloud sensor.


The Panasonic Weather-CAM used to upload images to this website. The camera allows limited control from the internet using 8 preset buttons.


A new lighting system was installed that is battery powered and uses a small solar panel to charge the  battery during daylight hours. The light automatically turns on at dusk, and off at dawn. It can also be shut off/on  from inside the observatory using the wall mounted switches seen below the lamp. Two lights were installed, one is clear and the other is red (not shown).


    A  Flat Fielder light box made by Adirondack has been  installed on the south wall of the dome. The light box will be used as part of the calibration process when astro-images are taken. The box helps remove the effects of dust, uneven illumination of the imaging chip and vignetting. When the scope is parked and the dome is in the homed position, the height of the motorized pier is adjusted so that the scope's aperture is in front of the Flat Fielder.  The light output level can either be remotely controlled by a PC or locally set by a hand controller. Without the box the "flats" would have to be taken by pointing the scope at a clear spot in the sky at either dusk or dawn. The problem with the sky method  is there is only about a 15 minute window in which the flats can be taken.  The sky must be dark enough so it doesn't overexposure the CCD chip but no so  dark that  stars show up in  the background.


Here the SBIG All Sky cam can be seen mounted in what I hope is it's permanent home. The cloud sensor can be seen just in back and to the right of the Sky Cam.


In order for the  observatory's  computer to be remote controlled the front panel power button was replaced with a CPS relay box. The relay box is remote controllable via a Ethernet controller. This allowed the PC to powered up or powered down remotely over the internet. The relay box shown in this image above was eventually replaced with a CPS Intelligent Auto Push Board. The I-APB board mounts in the rear of the PC, in an empty card slot location and works similar to the Relay Box but  is a cleaner installation and more reliable. The new configuration also restores the functionality of the front panel button. An actual card slot on the mother board is not used, just the physical slot on the back of the chassis.


Above is an image of the Paramount ME German Equatorial Mount that replaced the fork mounted LX200GPS and the wedge. The LX200GPS Optical Tube Assembly (OTA) was kept and mounted on the Paramount ME. Click on the image above to see a larger version. Click here for more info about the Paramount ME installation.


Here is an image I found on the hard drive of me and the ME caught by the one of the cameras used to monitor the scope during remote ops.  I believe I may be tweaking the polar alignment as the Paramount ME had only been installed for about a week and half. In this photo the scope is pointed near the Zenith. The telescope tube is only partially visible on  the right side of the frame.


A Hewlett Packard IPAQ 3115 is sometimes used to monitor and control the observatory. The Pocket PC can either connect to the network via Bluetooth or 802.11b. In the picture above an image from the CCDSoft camera control software is shown on the left side of the display and TheSky6 is on the right. With this setup the telescope can be re-pointed,  imaging parameters for the CCD camera can be changed or I can watch to make sure the mount performs the meridian flip and correctly reacquires the imaging target afterward. Because of its size the IPAQ is much more convenient to use (in some cases) than the laptop. 


Periodically a new mask is made of the sky that is visible from the observatory. Trees grow, additions on built on homes etc. The edges of the black area are trees and houses that block the view of the telescopes. This is the local horizon. The circle is the real horizon. The mask is used by the telescope control program to prevent the telescope from slewing outside the black area. For observational planning the local horizon is used for when objects while be visible (rise and set times).


Here is view of the observatory PC with the ACP Observatory Control software running. This software allows safe reliable remote and automated control  of the observatory.  The display is from a test run using camera and telescope simulators in order to prove the system software.
- The window in the upper left is MaxImDL. The images are automatically acquired. The stars in the image are analyzed then compared to a star catalog. The telescope pointing is determined from the star pattern and adjusted if needed.
- The window in the lower left is imaging progress window. It shows how far along the current exposure is. It also displays the camera's electronic cooler temperature.
- The center window is the ACP window. At the top it displays the telescope position, time date and observatory status. The center section display info about the target as well as who is remotely accessing the observatory. From this section you can also control the telescope and  dome, or open the web browser to control the observatory.
- The lower center section is where scripts can be loaded and executed locally. The operator can also provide input here if the script requires user interaction. There is also a window the displays the script output.
- The far right side window is TheSky6 display. It graphically shows where the telescope is pointed. 
Hovering the mouse over the image above will show the interface to the observatory from the web browser. A larger night vision mode of the display server can be seen by clicking here.


The upgrade to the ACP software required the existing  dome controller board to be replaced. with a newer controller. You can see from the above picture how much fun it was as I had made a number of modifications to the factory controller. I now had to make all those work with the new board. You can see the observatory control GUI and source code on the PC display below the control box. The code was modified and tested at various stages during the upgrade before everything was buttoned up.


This shows the difference between the old controller and the new one. The old controller used two boards to control the dome rotation. The new MaxDome II system uses only one. The shutter control board is identical to the rotation control. I elected to use my old controller for the shutters (it saved me $500). I hope I don't end up regretting that decision The old shutter controller uses the same Autodome motor controller for the shutters as it does for the dome rotation.


Idle hands... Here the newly installed red door lamp is seen.  A box of 4 of these were acquired from NEAF. The lights use a single red LED and use solar power to charge a single AA battery. The light turns on automatically at dusk and runs for about 8 hours. before the battery goes dead. It use it to see door latch in the dark so I can unlock & lock the door. (I have to figure out what to do with the other 3).



This 2500 BTU heating and air conditioning unit was actually for a dog house. The thing that I found appealing about it is it was deigned for outside use. There is precious little space inside the observatory.


 

This inside view shows the vent tubes. The top line is the air flow line the bottom is the filtered return. Since the system is a closed loop system it also has the ability to function as a dehumidifier. The micro-fiber filter is washable.
 

The unit is positioned on the southeast rear corner of the observatory.

Since the HAC unit reside at the back of the observatory and the controls are on the unit, it would be rather inconvenient to use them to turn heat or A/C on and off.  To get around that the Observatory Control Panel GUI was updated to include the HAC unit. Unfortunately that also required the addition of another remote control power strip as there where no spare outlets. A weather proof extension box with an manual ON/OFF switch was installed that allows the HAC to be powered via one of the remote control outlets.  Click on the GUI to see a 10 meg AVI video of the obse 

5" A/C vent. The 90 degree tube is removable so the cap can be fitted during the winter. A screen just inside the observatory keeps the critters out.

Here my son is cleaning the cubbies.

The dome is off and 2 of the walls are gone. The power is disconnected and all the equipment is out.

All lined up and ready to be power washed.

Stored in the garage waiting for the movers.

 

This is all that remains of the JAT Observatory, The bird bath sit son the 12" x 12" pier base plate. The base plate is  a top the 18" x 18" x 4'  cement pier.  The pier still remains perfectly level even after 11 years.



The observatory and all the telescopes and astronomy equipment was stored in our new garage in Georgia.  The 3 custom built crates hold the observatory and the Pier-Tech 2 adjustable pier. That and the dehumidifier (floor) and the external HAVC unit (up right green) have been donated to the Kennesaw Mountain High School science department. A U-Haul truck and a bunch of JROTC student got it all moved to the school for installation at a future date. My wife's car now occupies this spot,

 

 

 

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