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A Photo Tour of the Palomar Observatory (Gallery)

The Palomar Observatory in southern California

Nola Taylor Redd

The Palomar Observatory in Southern California, the home of the iconic Hale telescope, was a powerhouse of astronomical discoveries for many years. Here's a photo tour inside the historic facility. Read the full article here.

Protection

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Hard hats near the door make the observatory's basement feel a little like a construction site.

Dim hallways

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The dimly lit hallways carry an orange tint used in many observatories at night.

Back to the beginning

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Sketches of the Hale telescope and other telescopes decorate one of the observatory's hallways.

Support

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Massive beams support the 530-ton Hale telescope.

Separate supports

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Stretching across the ceiling, the beams keep the telescope separate from the building support, to reduce unwanted movement of the instrument.

Cleanliness

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The vacuum chamber on the lower level is used to clean smaller mirrors.

Hardware

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Clamps and bolts of varying sizes.

Stairway to...

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A metal stairway ascends to the second floor, where the Hale telescope awaits.

Hale telescope

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The bottom half of the Hale telescope. The original eyepiece was replaced by electronics.

Out and beyond

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Peering up through the telescope to the dome beyond.

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