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Mark II Radio Telescope

Hayley Skinner and Chris Holmes

The New Mount

Detailed diagram of the new mount for Mark II radio telescope

The diagram shows that the telescope mount is Y-shaped. This is a useful design as it ensures that the telescope dish is positioned directly above the centre of the mount and base. This ensures that the dish will be more stable. The elevation shaft is also supported at both ends which ensures that the dish is securely attached.

Close-up of the new mount

It can also be seen that there are counterweights in the yoke. These are required to balance the weight of the motors and gearing systems on the opposite side of the yoke. A main factor in the design is the weight of the mount. In an attempt to keep the weight as low as possible aluminium has been used instead of steel. In order to keep the elevation shaft and the azimuth shaft rotating smoothly, a special system using a combination of bearing and grease will be used. At the contact points for each rotating shaft a ring of bearings will be placed to allow smooth rotation. To prevent any weathering of the bearings and to keep the motion smooth, grease will be added into the reservoir where the ball bearings sit. This grease will have to be replaced once a week; this will be done using a simple tube which will be fixed to the outside of the mount leading into the bearing reservoir. The grease can then be squirted down the tube onto the ball bearings. As the mount will be outside for its entire life, the mount will be coated with an anti-corrosive substance to weatherproof it against the elements.