Watson Clock Drive
As a professional instrument in its day, the Watson telescope's mechanical accuracy rivals the best telescopes currently being
made. It employed a
mechanism to track astronomical targets in right ascension that was driven by a small motor regulated by
a series of falling weights and a swinging
pendulum, much like a grandfather clock. When originally decommissioned in 1988,
the tracking was found to lose only 1 second per month of
It was this kind of original clock-regulated tracking mechanism that gave rise to the name of right ascension motors still used on
telescopes to this
day. Although now regulated with electronic circuitry, they are still called " clock drives". This part of the
original telescope will not be reused.
HAL plans to retrofit the Watson scope with a modern computer controlled tracking mechanism. This retrofit has now been completed compliments
of Company Seven.
Clock Drive Photos
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