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The main optical telescope at Lanihuli Observatory is a Meade 16-inch LX200 Schmidt Cassegrain that's situated on an elevated platform and mounted on a permanent equatorial fork mount. A 4.7-inch Orion 120ED refractor is mounted piggyback on the main telescope.

The observatory's dome is a 16’6” diameter Model REB Ash-Dome with upper and lower shutters. The main telescope and dome are both automated and slew using TheSky software controls.

Astrophotography is normally carried out with either a SBIG 8EI CCD or an SLR camera. Click this link for a sample of astrophotos taken at Lanihuli Observatory.


Student research projects have included such activities as astrophotograhy and occultation observations.

Among the research undertaken with this 16-inch instrument were two occultation observations conducted jointly with Williams College and MIT. The studies were published and presented at poster sessions:

Marv Kessler-Sam Plunkett-Nathan Hiraoka
Astronomy instructor Marv Kessler with student interns
Sam Plunkett & Nathan Hiraoka
Joe Ciotti at Meade 16-inch
Observatory Director Joseph Ciotti at the 16" platform
Meade 16-inch
Polynesian and Western Compass directions are enscribed around the base of the dome.