Blue Mesa Observatory

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Blue Mesa Observatory
Organization New Mexico State University
Location Sierra de las Uvas, New Mexico
Coordinates
Altitude 1,980 meters (6,500 ft)
Established 1967 (1967)
Closed 1993 (1993)
Telescopes
unnamed telescope 0.61 m reflector

Blue Mesa Observatory (BMO), also referred to Magdalena Peak Station for the International Planetary Patrol Program, was an astronomical observatory owned and operated by New Mexico State University (NMSU). It was located on Magdalena Peak in the Sierra de las Uvas (Grape Mountains) of southern New Mexico (USA), approximately 43 kilometers (27 mi) northwest of Las Cruces. Founded in 1967 under the supervision of Clyde Tombaugh, the observatory was closed in 1993.[1][2][3] The site and the 30 acres (0.047 sq mi; 0.12 km2) surrounding it were conveyed to the Federal Aviation Administration, which tore down the observatory building and replaced it with a radar installation.[4]

BMO's main telescope was a 0.61 m (24 in) Cassegrain reflector built by Astro Mechanics and installed in 1969.[5] It was equipped with a Boller and Chivens spectrograph, a spectrophotometer, and a photoelectric photometer. After BMO closed, the telescope and instruments were acquired by Pittsburg State University (PSU) in 1993. It was installed at the PSU-Greenbush Astrophysical Observatory near Girard, Kansas in 1996.[6] PSU operates the observatory in cooperation with several local school districts.[7]

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References[edit]

  1. ^ Tombaugh, C. W. (1967). "Observatory Reports: National Radio Astronomy Observatory". Astronomical Journal 72: 1122. Bibcode:1967AJ.....72.1118H. 
  2. ^ "Annual Reports of Astronomical Observatories and Departments: New Mexico State University, Astronomy Department". Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society 26: 469. 1994. Bibcode:1994BAAS...26..469. 
  3. ^ "Annual Reports of Astronomical Observatories and Departments: New Mexico State University, Astronomy Department". Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society 25: 420. 1993. Bibcode:1993BAAS...25..420. 
  4. ^ "NEW MEXICO STATE UNIVERSITY WATER PLAN 2002-2042". Office of Facilities and Services New Mexico State University. June 2003. Retrieved 2012-01-30. 
  5. ^ Tombaugh, C. W. (1970). "New Mexico State University Observatory, Las Cruces, New Mexico. Report 1968-1969". Bulletin of the Astronomical Society 2: 108. Bibcode:1970BAAS....2..108T. 
  6. ^ "PSU/Greenbush Astrophysical Observatory - Pittsburg State University". Pittsburg State University. Retrieved 2012-01-30. 
  7. ^ "Astrophysical Observatory". Greenbush Southeast Kansas Education Service Center. Retrieved 2012-01-30. 

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