LARRY LANDOLFI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY LARRY LANDOLFI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
The 107' (2.7M) Harlan J. Smith telescope atop Mt. Locke in Ft. Davis, Texas, has uncovered important insights into stellar atmospheres and composition, supernovas, and the nature of galaxies and quasars since going into operation in November, 1969. McDonald Observatory's Smith Telescope was the third largest in the world when completed that year. Its light-gathering power is a quarter of a million times greater than that of the unaided human eye. The telescope was built under terms of a joint contract between NASA and The University of Texas, at a total cost of about $5 million. Since its dedication in November 1969, the Smith Telescope has been in steady use every clear night.
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