::Oak Ridge Observatory


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The Oak Ridge Observatory, also known as the George R. Agassiz Station, is located at 42 Pinnacle Road, Harvard, Massachusetts. It was operated by the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics as a facility of the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) until August 19, 2005.<ref>Oak Ridge Observatory</ref>

The observatory was established in 1933. Through its first 40 years, its primary research focus was on tracking minor planets and asteroids in the solar system. Starting in the 1980s, astronomers began to use the facility to measure stars over long periods of time, which led to hunts for extrasolar planets, i.e., planets outside our solar system. Surveys at Oak Ridge found many such distant planets.{{ safesubst:#invoke:Unsubst||date=__DATE__ |$B= {{#invoke:Category handler|main}}{{#invoke:Category handler|main}}[citation needed] }}

The largest telescope east of Texas in the United States is the 61-inch reflector. (see Hobby-Eberly Telescope) However, most of its projects were discontinued in 2005. Harvard University's Optical SETI program continues at the site.

It also housed an {{safesubst:#invoke:convert|convert}} steerable radio telescope once used in Project BETA, a search for extraterrestrial intelligence. A 41-cm (16-inch) Boller and Chivens Cassegrain reflector originally housed at Oak Ridge is available for public use at the National Air and Space Museum's Public Observatory Project on the National Mall in Washington, DC.<ref>NASM AirSpace Blog, March 29, 2009. and NASM Public Observatory Project</ref>

Oak Ridge Observatory sections
Intro   See also   Notes and references   External links   

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