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ARO 50 Inch (1.3m) Astro-Research Astrograph

AR-50 Telescope

The 1.3m telescope currently under construction at ARO is expected to be completed in the early summer of 2011.  Only the mirror, mirror cell telescope base and drives need to be completed.  Other completed components include the optical tube assembly center-section and camera mount at the prime focus.  All components are expected to be delivered or completed at ARO by June 2011. 


1.3m telescope fork in automotive epoxy primer.  Telescope fork weighs in at 1,990 lbs (902.65 kg)


The 1.0m T-6061 drive disks have been fabricated and will soon be machined and bored to specs.



1.3m telescope headring   1.3m telescope tailring

Head-ring and Tail-ring components for the AR-50 Astrograph


50 inch telescope

CAD drawing of the AR-50 Tailring assembly


Progress on the 1.3-m mirror blank

The 1.3m telescope mirror blank has been completed by Peter Wangsness and is now at JP Astrocraft in Charleston, Illinois for generating the f/4.0 curve in the fall of 2010.  After generating the it will be taken 60 miles north to Lockwood Optics for grinding, polishing and figuring.   Completion of the 1.3-m mirror is expected in the late Spring 2011.

wangsness optic 50 inch mirror mold

1.3m mirror blank mold - that is a coffee cup in the center of the mold


  50 inch telescope mirror blank 

1.3 mirror blank just out of the furnace


50 inch telescope mirror blank

1.3m mirror blank - yard stick comparison


50 inch telescope grinding machine

1.3-m Mirror Grinding Machine  -  Photo: Mike Lockwood