MPC Code # 838, Dayton Research Station
This is an official research facility conducting astronomical research on Minor Planets (Asteroids), and Supernovae.
The Chumack Observatories are fully automated facilities which will take image data every clear night for the Minor Planet Center, Center for Astrophysics, Harvard University’s Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory in Cambridge, MA.
The Chumack Observatory (Dayton, Ohio) houses an Automated Meade 10″ SCT LX200 + CCD and is used primarily for Astrometry (positional measurements of asteroids & comets) for the Minor Planet Center, Occultations for IOTA, Variable Star observations for the AAVSO, and our own Supernova Search program.
We also do follow up observations of some New Variable stars and Novae discoveries and report this data to the AAVSO also in Cambridge, MA.
The Facilities are owned and operated by John Chumack/Galactic Images®.
See how to build your own Backyard Observatory.
Click here for the construction overview of the Chumack Observatory.
MPC Code # H66, Yellow Springs Research Station
The Chumack Observatories, Yellow Springs Research Station
I constructed my Observatories at this site in Yellow Springs, Ohio.
After 20 years of lugging my equipment around, and wasting precious time setting up, I decided to find a permanent darker sky location not far from home but out of most of the ambient light of the cities.
The Chumack Observatories, Yellow Springs Research Station started as a two month construction project in May of 2002. As time allowed I would do a little work every weeknight or Free weekend.
The homemade 10 ft. Dome & Dome track was the most difficult part to construct, a real pain at times, but now works perfectly, currently the installation of the instruments are 90% completed.
The Plan was to house my Original First Homemade 16″ F4.5 Newt. Telescope, as well as to provide shelter for two other smaller automated systems.
The main Dome houses my 16″ Newtonian which will be used for my Comet/Asteroid/NEO searches.
The Smaller Domes and roll off buildings are the Automated Search Telescopes, One 8″ for Variable Star/Nova searches, The other a 12″ for Supernovae Searches.
The Remote telescopes are controlled from inside the Observatory’s main control room.
My 16″ F4.5 Newtonian is Fully operational and Voice controlled, Using Bartels goto system and Automation Software suite by Software Bisque. Thanks to Tom & The Bisque brothers for customizing the software for my specific needs, their software can do just about anything for you and remotely as well!
This construction was supposed to only take two months, well over two years later, here we are!
Although it was a great geometric learning experience, I probably would not tackle another Dome from scratch!
Next Time I’ll just buy a prefabbed Homedome, Explora-Dome, or SkyShed POD! It would have been done in a weekend, and a heck of a lot less work!
You can see from the photos that I use all the manufactured domes listed above.