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Discipine of Physics
Faculty of Science, Engineering & Technology

Mount Canopus Observatory

The Canopus Hill Observatory houses a one metre telescope and is situated approximately 12 km from Hobart. Because of its high southern latitude (43° South) the telescope provides opportunities for study of the Magellanic Clouds throughout the year.

Telescope instrumentation includes a 2-channel high speed photometer with UBVR and clear filters and a CCD photometer with SITe 512 × 512 pixel backside-thinned CCD and 6-channel filter wheel.  Johnson-Cousins BVRI, Washington CM, and a small selection of narrowband filters (Hα, Ca HK, DDO51) are available.  These are mounted at the f/11 Cassegrain focus.  The observatory owns a high resolution Coudé spectrograph which is currently being retro-fitted for use with an optical fibre system.  Auto-guiding is achieved with an auxilary  telescope and fast imager.  We are currently examining the potential to improve image quality by active cooling of the primary mirrow during daylight hours.
Mount Canopus Observatory
If you are interested in visiting the observatory, please telephone the
School of Mathematics & Physics on
 +61(0)3 6226 2439

In addition to the main dome, there is also a 16" telescope at the site which is used principally by the Astronomical Society of Tasmania  for photographic work, and for public viewing during observatory open nights.

The latest Observer's Notes are now available on-line.  Essential reading for anyone using the Canopus telescope. Because observing procedures can sometimes change on a day-to-day basis there is a section on current problems/tips/warnings.

The Mount Canopus Observatory must soon close owing to encroaching light pollution from the Hobart suburbs. However, the future of Tasmanian optical astronomy is bright:  a state-of-the-art 1.3m telescope is planned to see first light in 2010.  The new observatory will be located at "Bisdee Tier".

Bisdee Tier Observatory Project

Can You Help?
Help us  Reach for the Stars 
by becoming part of a scientific progress in Tasmania by contributing to this project. Visit The UTAS Foundation homepage for more information.  To donate click here.

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Created: September 2009 by Tammy Riley
Last modified: September 2009
© Copyright School of Mathematics & Physics, University of Tasmania Australia, 2009