Mayall 4-m Telescope on Kitt Peak

KPNO is a division of the National Optical Astronomy Observatories which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA), Inc. under cooperative agreement with the National Science Foundation

Crab Nebula The Mayall 4-meter Telescope on Kitt Peak was dedicated in 1973.

The 4-m Telescope is the largest optical telescope on Kitt Peak. Originally designed with a prime focus, a wide-field Ritchey-Chrétien focus, and a coudé focus, the telescope has hosted a wide variety of instrumentation from the original prime focus photographic camera to modern digital imagers. Spectroscopic instrumentation has included the RC and Echelle spectrographs, the Cryogenic Camera, the innovative Fourier Transform Spectrometer. Powerful infrared instrumentation has included the high resolution Phoenix spectrometer and the diffraction limited imager DLIRIM, as well as many other instruments.

The Mayall Telescope has played an important role in establishing the role of dark matter in the universe through observations of the rotation curves of galaxies, in determinations of stellar radii from occultations, in understanding the dynamical structure of elliptical galaxies, and in determinations of the distance scale and large scale structure of the universe.

4-m under construction
4-m under construction
4-m on Kitt Peak

Image Caption: The true color image above of the Crab Nebula was taken using Ektachrome film at the prime focus of the Kitt Peak 4-m Telescope in 1973 by Bill Schoening, NOAO. One of the more spectacular historical supernovae, it was recorded by Chinese astronomers in the year 1054 AD.

Kitt Peak 40th
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Last updated: 31Jul1998
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