Oak Ridge Observatory
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Oak Ridge Observatory

The Oak Ridge Observatory (ORO, code: 801), also known as the George R. Agassiz Station, is located at 42 Pinnacle Road, Harvard, Massachusetts. It was operated by the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics as a facility of the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) from 1933 until August 19, 2005.[2]

Description

The observatory was established in 1933. Through its first 40 years, its primary research focus was on tracking minor planets and asteroids in the Solar System. Starting in the 1980s, astronomers began to use the facility to measure stars over long periods of time, which led to hunts for extrasolar planets, i.e., planets outside the Solar System. Surveys at Oak Ridge found many such distant planets.[]

The largest telescope east of Texas in the United States is the 61-inch reflector (see Hobby-Eberly Telescope). However, most of its projects were discontinued in 2005. Harvard University's Optical SETI program continues at the site.

It also housed an 84-foot (26 m) steerable radio telescope once used in Project BETA, a search for extraterrestrial intelligence. A 41-cm (16-inch) Boller and Chivens Cassegrain reflector originally housed at Oak Ridge is available for public use at the National Air and Space Museum's Public Observatory Project on the National Mall in Washington, DC.[3]

The inner main-belt asteroid 4733 ORO, discovered at Oak Ridge in 1982, was named in honor of the observatory.[4]

List of discovered minor planets

In addition to the discoveries below, the Minor Planet Center inconsistently credits some asteroids such as 4760 Jia-xiang directly to the Harvard College Observatory although they have been discovered at Oak Ridge.

2674 Pandarus 27 January 1982 list
2872 Gentelec 5 September 1981 list
3076 Garber 13 September 1982 list
3342 Fivesparks 27 January 1982 list
3773 Smithsonian 23 December 1984 list
3797 Ching-Sung Yu 22 December 1987 list
4372 Quincy 3 October 1984 list
4733 ORO 19 April 1982 list
5976 Kalatajean 25 September 1992 list
6696 Eubanks 1 September 1986 list
6949 Zissell 11 September 1982 list
7276 Maymie 4 September 1983 list
7383 Lassovszky 30 September 1981 list
7386 Paulpellas 25 November 1981 list
7461 Kachmokiam 3 October 1984 list
7639 Offutt 21 February 1985 list
7738 Heyman 24 November 1981 list
7940 Erichmeyer 13 March 1991 list
8161 Newman 19 August 1990 list
8357 O'Connor 25 September 1989 list
8496 Jandlsmith 16 August 1990 list
9179 Satchmo 13 March 1991 list
9291 Alanburdick 17 August 1982 list
9929 McConnell 24 February 1982 list
10289 Geoffperry 24 August 1984 list
10290 Kettering 17 September 1985 list
12223 Hoskin 8 October 1983 list
12224 Jimcornell 19 October 1984 list
2 August 1992 list
22 November 1995 list
8 September 1991 list
5 December 1986 list
16 October 1990 list
7 December 1988 list
13 August 1985 list
24 August 1984 list
5 September 1983 list
13 September 1982 list

See also

References

  1. ^ "Minor Planet Discoverers (by number)". Minor Planet Center. 12 January 2017. Retrieved 2017.
  2. ^ Oak Ridge Observatory
  3. ^ NASM AirSpace Blog, March 29, 2009. Archived July 31, 2009, at the Wayback Machine and NASM Public Observatory Project Archived 2010-02-22 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ Schmadel, Lutz D. (2007). "(4733) Oro". Dictionary of Minor Planet Names - (4733) ORO. Springer Berlin Heidelberg. p. 408. doi:10.1007/978-3-540-29925-7_4643. ISBN 978-3-540-00238-3.

External links



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