Hopkins Observatory & Planetarium

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Hopkins Observatory & Planetarium
33 Lab Campus Dr.
Williamstown, MA 01267
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The modern equipment of the Hopkins Observatory is situated atop the Thompson Physics and Astronomy Laboratory, and includes a 24-inch Cassegrain telescope (manufactured by DFM Engineering, Inc.) equipped with a 3056 x 3056 pixel CCD detector. A 14-inch Celestron telescope on a Losmandy mount and a 10-inch Meade telescope are also located on the Science Center roof, each in separate domes. Additional instruments include several 8-inch Meade and Celestron telescopes, a 6-inch Meade apochromatic refractor, a 5-inch solar telescope, a heliostat, a solar spectrograph, and several portable telescopes. The domed ceiling of the Planetarium was originally black with stars painted on it, making it in some sense the nation’s oldest planetarium. In 1963, a Spitz A3p projector was installed, named in memory of Prof. Willis Milham, professor of astronomy from 1901 to 1942 and the third director of the observatory. In 1973, the side rooms were turned into the Mehlin Museum of Astronomy in memory of Theodore Mehlin, fourth director of the planetarium and professor of astronomy at Williams from 1942 to 1971. In 2005, a new projector, a magnificent Zeiss Skymaster ZKP3/B, was installed to replace the older projector.