Hicks Observatory Specifications

The Hicks Observatory houses a 0.4m (16") Meade LX200-ACF f/10 Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope. A 0.67x focal reducer is inserted into the telescope when imaging to give a larger field of view. Imaging is carried out via a SBIG ST10-XME CCD camera with a SBIG CFW10 Filter Wheel (a list of currently installed filters are given below). Spectroscopy can also be undertaken on the 0.4m by using the same CCD camera coupled to a SBIG SGS Spectrograph.

A 80mm diameter, 670mm focal length refractor is attached to the main telescope which incorporates an unfiltered (white light) Starlight Xpress Lodestar CCD which is used for autoguiding the main telescope.

It should be noted that atmospheric extinction from the Hicks Observatory is highly variable from night to night. Some examples of measured extinction are given below.

0.40m Optical Specifications
  without focal reducer with 0.67x focal reducer
aperture 406.4mm
focal length 4064mm 2723mm
focal ratio f/10 f/6.7
SBIG ST10-XME CCD field of view 12' 36" arcmin x 8' 28" arcmin 18' 49" arcmin x 12' 38" arcmin
SBIG ST10-XME CCD plate scale 0.35 arcsec/pixel (binned 1x1)
0.7 arcsec/pixel (binned 2x2)
1.1 arcsec/pixel (binned 3x3)
0.52 arcsec/pixel (binned 1x1)
1.04 arcsec/pixel (binned 2x2)
1.56 arcsec/pixel (binned 3x3)

0.40m CCD Specifications
make and model SBIG ST10-XME
imager size (WxH) 14.9mm x 10mm
pixel array (WxH, unbinned) 2184 pixels x 1472 pixels
pixel size (WxH, unbinned) 6.8µm x 6.8µm

SBIG CFW10 Filter Wheel - list of currently installed filters
position 1 (empty)
position 2 B (Astrodon Photometrics Johnson/Cousins B)
position 3 V (Astrodon Photometrics Johnson/Cousins V)
position 4 R (Astrodon Photometrics Johnson/Cousins Rc)
position 5 I (Astrodon Photometrics Johnson/Cousins Ic)
position 6 H-alpha (Baader narrowband 7nm)
position 7 H-beta (Baader narrowband 8.5nm)
position 8 O III (Baader narrowband 8.5nm)
position 9 S II (Baader narrowband 8.5nm)
position 10 (empty)

The filter transmission plots can be viewed on the instrumentation page.

0.40m Autoguider Finder Optical Specifications
aperture 80mm
focal length 670mm
focal ratio f/8.4
Starlight Xpress Lodestar CCD field of view 33 arcmin x 24 arcmin
Starlight Xpress Lodestar CCD plate scale 2.6 arcsec/pixel x 2.5 arcsec/pixel (binned 1x1)
5.2 arcsec/pixel x 5.0 arcsec/pixel (binned 2x2)

Hicks Observatory Atmospheric Extinction
date, telescope and filter airmass range atmospheric extinction
2010_10_27, 0.4m, V 1.16 - 1.24 0.59
2010_11_23, 0.4m, V 1.13 - 1.44 0.86
2010_11_25, 0.4m, V 1.08 - 1.23 2.36
2010_12_08, 0.4m, V 1.25 - 1.80 0.52
2010_12_08, 0.25m, V 1.04 - 1.15 0.18

0.40m Measured CCD Zero Point Magnitudes
filter zero point
B 20.70
V 21.34
R [currently unknown - not enough data for calculation]
I [currently unknown - not enough data for calculation]