Kvistaberg Observatory: The Schmidt Telescope

Photo: Göran Henriksson 1977
Photo: Göran Henriksson 1977
Photo: Bertil Pettersson
100/135/300cm Schmidt telescope
The general plans for the telescope were worked out at the end of the 1940's by Prof. Malmquist and the first director at Kvistaberg, Åke Wallenquist. F. Thorlin, constructional engineer at Stockholm observatory, was responsible for the design and construction of the instrument as well as the 180cm aluminization plant at the Uppsala observatory. The major mechanical parts of the telescope were manufactured by various Swedish firms, while the minor parts were made at the workshop at the Uppsala observatory, where the mirror also was grounded and polished.
The spherical 135cm mirror of borosilicate glass produced by Pilkington Brothers, England was delivered in 1950. The final precision figuring was carried out by Prof. Väisälä, Turku, Finland and he also figured the 100cm corrector plate and this was all completed in 1957. The foundation of the dome was inaugurated by Nils Tamm in late 1951. In 1955 some of the heavy mechanical parts could be mounted and in 1960 the final parts of the tube. In 1963 the mirror and the corrector plate arrived and in late 1963 the telescope was fully operational. The official inauguration of the telescope took place on June 7, 1964 in the presence of officials from Uppsala university. In the summer of 1965 the 7° - 80cm objective prism was delivered from Zeiss, Germany and spectral plates could be obtained. An objective grating was constructed by the observatory engineer at Uppsala, Berndt Malm, to be used in combination with the objective prism. (grating constant: 1.00 mag)
Two guide telescopes are mounted on opposite sides of the telescope tube, 20/380cm and 24/440cm, the 24 cm lens from the Uppsala refractor of 1860. Two finders, one larger and one smaller are also mounted on the telescope. The telescope is driven by a 1/20 horsepower synchronous motor (1500 rev/min) that is geared to the polar axis. The total weight of the telescope is about 20 tons.
The Kvistaberg Schmidt was the largest optical telescope in Sweden for almost 50 years.

Plate size: 24 x 24 cm
Plate scale: 69.0 arcsec/mm
Total field: 4.6 x 4.6 °   (non-vignetted field has a diameter of 3°.0)
Objective prism, linear dispersion: H(beta) 370 Å/mm - H(epsilon) 199 Å/mm
  • Plate Archive   (1963-1999)
    Kvistaberg Observatory      Telescopes at Kvistaberg