Lowell Observatory Tour

Lowell Observatory not only has a wonderful location among the cool pines of northern Arizona, it also has an important place in the history of astronomy. Touring the grounds, visitors learn about many scientific discoveries, the astronomers who made them, and the instruments they used. The 24-Inch Clark Telescope, built by master telescope-maker Alvan Clark of Boston and installed in 1896, was used by Percival Lowell to map the planet Mars -- and its spurious "canals." The same telescope was also used by V.M. Slipher to collect early evidence of the expanding universe. And the planet Pluto, recently reclassified as a "dwarf planet," was discovered at Lowell Observatory by astronomer Clyde Tombaugh in 1930.



Click on each thumbnail to see a larger image.


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Observatory Entrance
and Visitor Center
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Percival Lowell
and His Astronomers


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Visitor Center Displays
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Planet Display in Gift Shop


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Clark Refractor Dome
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24-Inch Clark Refractor


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Eyepiece End of Clark Refractor
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Percival Lowell's Observing Chair


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Pluto Discovery Telescope Dome
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Tour Guide Jill Allen
with Pluto Telescope


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Slipher Building Rotunda
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Zeiss Blink Comparator


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Lowell's Mars Globes with "Canals"
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Slipher Spectrograph


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1892 Clark Refractor
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Planet Walk


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Percival Lowell Mausoleum


Lowell Observatory is located on Mars Hill on the western edge of Flagstaff, Arizona. The observatory is open to the public; for hours and directions, visit the Lowell Observatory web site.


Revised: October 3, 2006
Copyright © 2004 Joe Orman
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