The Rachel Hutzel Observatory
Posted 01 February 2014 - 10:48 AM
Posted 01 February 2014 - 10:53 AM
Posted 01 February 2014 - 11:18 AM
Posted 12 May 2014 - 08:30 PM
Here is a photo-play of the installation graciously put onto the Warren County Astronomical Society website by member Fred Bay along with many other photos:
Next comes the tweaking of the instrument for polar alignment and training & program development. There still is some finish work the kids will do to the building and a lot of concrete works for the surrounding patios plus the parking lot. Last thing done will be the landscaping.
It was a very emotional day.
Posted 12 May 2014 - 09:28 PM
Posted 13 May 2014 - 12:43 PM
Posted 26 July 2014 - 09:39 AM
Sorry for the crummy cell photo. It looks stunning in person. The top of the granite pier is 8' so it gives you an idea of the scale.
And the scope works fantastic. Polar aligned but we're using the SkyX and T-Point for the show and tell. The screen will be routed to a big TV so people can point and click to an object. The pier is plumbed with etra USB and video cables for video & CCD, especially with the Orion 110 ED on the side.
Visually the big 11" is fantastic. The observatory is in a deep yellow zone. The Milky Way overhead displays many dark lanes and textures. Combine that with the ability of a big doublet and Chromacor and the view of M13 for example is extraordinay.
My only regret and mistake I'd take back in a second was having the roof roll off to the south instead of the north. The peak restricts southern views. But that's just an excuse to get a big Dob.
Posted 27 July 2014 - 08:48 AM
Posted 28 July 2014 - 09:23 AM
The school is a vocational arts center and they're always looking for projects for their students. They have done many in the area in association with several institutions including our county's Area Progress Council, of which they are members and who are running the observatory project. Like other construction projects, this one was actually a class taught by the school and offered to seniors. The kids LOVED working on it.
The materials were supplied to them and they supplied the labor for free.
Posted 30 July 2014 - 09:04 PM
Posted 14 August 2014 - 04:07 PM
That is one super duper Observatory! May I ask what mount you used for the 11 inch D&G?
Posted 14 August 2014 - 08:21 PM
That is some amazing work and design. Glad to see the results and tribute.
Posted 05 October 2014 - 11:16 AM
Well, we had our dedication Friday night and it was spectacular. It rained all day with high winds but we were going ahead anyway with the 7:00 dedication and make it quick. Well right around 6:00 PM, the rain stopped and the winds started dying down and people started to arrive.
Right as the program was to begin, the sun came out lighting up the surrounding fall colored tree tops with a warm green/yellow-red-ish glow. And then there appeared a spectacular double rainbow. As we looked from the parking lot, it arched down through the center of the roof. There was not a dry eye in the 200 guests present. I rolled off the roof, we started the program and then we treated the guests to views of the moon. It was still and calm. There were countless oohs and wows which went on to about 9:30. Shortly after we buttoned up the facility and as us remaining few were getting into our cars to leave, the wind and rain returned.
Miracles just don't get anymore blatant than that.