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The Anglo-Australian Telescope

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The Anglo-Australian Telescope, with the mirror cover open and the prime focus 'cage' attached for photography. It is seen here from the south-east — note the figure in the foreground for scale. The huge yellow horseshoe bearing moves the telescope in the east-west plane ('right ascension'), riding on oil pads, and its size ensures a smooth tracking motion, The odd angle of the horseshoe reflects the local latitude of the instrument, allowing it to compensate for the earth's rotation during long observations. The white telescope 'tube' is seen here slightly tilted, allows the telescope to swivel in a north-south direction (declination). July 1984.

Credit: David Malin

© Australian Astronomical Observatory