The Observatory consists of a 2 storey building which houses the telescope, a control room, kitchen, toilet and store room. The base of the dome is at a height of 6.5 m above the ground to reduce the effect of local thermal effects. The Ash Dome is 4.5 m in diameter and has an encoder with a resolution of 0.9 degree and is computer controlled.
The control room houses the telescope control computer and video monitor showing images from the TV finder and the Cassegrain TV camera. The remote focus position of the Cassegrain and Prime Focus systems is also displayed.
A separate instrument computer controls the CCD camera, and provides a link to the University Campus High Speed Network. This allows access to the Birmingham STARLINK node and to the WWW, from which we can download Weather Satellite Images.
The building from outside at Sunset:
The building in the daytime: