The instrument shop at Lowell Observatory carries out a variety of work in support of our research instrumentation, outreach telescopes, and our historic preservation projects. It is outfitted with computer-controlled machining instruments, CAD workstations, a clean room, and a large-format printer.
The Lowell Discovery Telescope’s instrument cube, designed by Instrument Scientist Tom Bida and Director of Technical Services Ralph Nye, was almost entirely machined and assembled in our shop and was delivered to the LDT on schedule in early 2012. (Some parts were outsourced to the Scientific Instrumentation Facility at Boston University). The instrument cube is a key part of the LDT’s functionality and versatility, and it is one of the most complex tasks our team has undertaken.
Instrument Manager Ted Dunham led the development of the High Speed Imaging Photometer for Occultations (HIPO) for NASA’s SOFIA project. In 2014, the instrument group finished an exhaustive restoration of the 24-inch Alvan Clark refractor.