On Tuesday August 28th, 2018, the Grand Mesa Observatory received its final components for the Air Force Academy's Falcon Telescope network. This telescope, its instrumentation, and its encompassing dome will be fully owned and operated by the Air Force Academy. This also meant that their personnel were on hand to handle installation and the initial calibration routines, with Mr. Francis Chun taking the lead on this particular project. He can be seen in a number of the photos/videos manning the arrival (by crane) of the monster 20" scope, as well as on the front page of this past Wendesday's local paper!. The scope itself was made by an Italian company called Officina Stellare, and it's an f/8 Ritchey-Chrétien design which is perched atop a Software Bisque Paramount ME2. This project has been many months in the making, but we are both honored and thrilled to be hosting the Falcon Telescope Network here at Grand Mesa Observatory
Due to the sheer size of the telescope it required a crane to lift in to place, and considering how rare of a site this is we had not one but TWO local TV stations on-hand to document the event, as well as a return by our esteemed local newspaper, The Daily Sentinel. You can check out some of the footage and videos below, as well as our second front-page appearance in the last 2 months!
Terry Hancock's video of the lifting of the Falcon Telescope:
Channel 5 TV Station interview on the Falcon Telescope:
Channel 11 TV Station interview on the Falcon Telescope: