DFM Engineering, Inc.
1035 Delaware Ave. Unit D
Longmont, CO 80501
Phone: 303-678-8143
Fax: 303-772-9411

Berea College awards DFM Engineering, Inc.
with B&C Telescope Retrofit order.

Berea College in central Kentucky features a Boller and Chivens 16" telescope that has been retrofitted by DFM Engineering, Inc..

According to Dr. Smith Powell, Physics professor at Berea, "We can identify an object displayed on the control screen, select it, and the telescope and dome will slew into position so that the object appears in the eyepiece of the telescope. The telescope and dome will continue to track to keep the object centered.

The new system tracks better and the telescope points quicker and better than before. We are very excited about our new research capabilities, here at Berea."

The Charles Martin Hall Science Building has also been made ready for the computer controlled dome and the retrofitted B&C 16" research grade telescope to provide the Physics Department with the necessary technology of today. The Gilbert Roberts Observatory in the Science Building was recently renovated.

"The original control system and electronics were over forty years old and were in need of replacement," said Dr. Frank Melsheimer of DFM Engineering. DFM technicians, Mark Kelley, Vice President of Engineering and Ian Huss, Production Manager are experts in retrofitting older telescopes and performed the telescope retrofitting and computer upgrades.

They removed the old right ascension and declination secondary drives. They replaced the secondary gearing and installed a single DC servo motor per axis. The telescope was recollimated and a pointing model was obtained.

DFM's Telescope Control System computer and software were added, offering automatic dome control features to the Berea College campus observatory.

The Berea Physics Department's telescope, which now has extensive exploratory capabilities, is capable of being controlled from anywhere in the world.

The system is operating and the observatory continues to host its open house schedule which started four years ago.

"In addition to the students, staff and public use of the new facilities, there will be development in the research project fields," Dr. Powell said.

Already, students have expressed an interest in using the telescope with its new capabilities for senior research projects. New faculty are incorporating the telescope into research and relevant curriculum.

"The impact of the telescope update and observatory improvements is very encouraging," said Dr. Powell.

Retrofit Control System


Retrofit Examples