Astronomical Photographic Data ArchiveUp one level
The Astronomical Photographic Data Archive (APDA) has been established at PARI to be the primary North American archive for collections of astronomical photographic plates. The goal is to make the archive a resource harnessed by present and generations of astronomers. APDA has recognized by the International Astronomical Union (IAU) and AAS Historical Astronomy Division.
- About the Astronomical Photographic Data Archive
- Photographic plates were the primary data recording medium for generations of astronomers, spanning over 130 years. The data is precious, and we cannot go back in time to image the sky as it appeared to generations of astronomers. A danger exists today for the safety of these plates, estimated at over 2 million. Observatories and universities are space limited and some seek a safe home for the legacy left by so many astronomers. PARI provides space, infrastructure, and Internet access. The goal is to make the archive a resource harnessed by present and generations of astronomers. We look forward to serving the astronomical community as a vital archival resource for future research projects.
- Infrastructure of APDA at PARI
- Description of what the APDA Archive Room, Office, and Scanning Room look like.
- Warner Swasey Observatory Plates
- The Warner Swasey Observatory Collection arrived at the Plate Center 18 October 2006. We are in the process of archiving the collection. We present here an electronic catalog that came with the plate collection. This electronic catalog (in MS Excel only) is preliminary and will be updated as the archiving process proceeds.
- Ann Arbor Spectrograph Plates
- The Ann Arbor Spectrograph Plates were taken with the Ann Arbor 37.5-inch telescope and spectrograph. Dates of the plates range from 1911 to 1963 and include 472 stars. Requests for a scan of particular plate, or a visit to PARI to access the plates, may be requested by e-mailing Michael Castelaz (email@example.com). The list of plates can be viewed or downloaded herein either PDF, MS Excel, or HTML format. The list was compiled by Thurburn Barker.
- Catalog of Blue Survey Objective Prism Plates 1967-1984
- Objective-prism plates taken with the Michigan Curtis Schmidt telescope at Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory (CTIO) in Chile and the Case Burrell Schmidt telescope at the National Optical Astronomy Observatories (NOAO) in Arizona. Dr. Nancy Houk was the PI and led the effort to classify stars on the plates. Her work resulted in the Michigan Spectral Catalogue. The 4 deg + 6 deg combined prisms (Curtis) and 10 deg prism (Burrell) yield a dispersion at H gamma of 108 A/mm, and the resolution is about 2A, comparable to that of the original MK system. The spectra were taken on unfiltered IIaO photographic plates and widened to 0.8 mm, with 20 min, 4 min and 1 min exposures being obtained.
- Smithsonian Observatory Prairie Network Meteor Patrol
- The Harvard and Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatories operated a series of cameras in the central U.S. in the period 1939 -1975 to photograph meteors. APDA holds the roughly 56,000 wide-field camera films as well as the associated observing records. Shown here is a representative sample of pictures from this collection. Some of this material is of potential scientific value, others of historical interest (e.g., the Lost City Meteorite).
- Committee Workshop to Develop a National Plan for Preserving Astronomical Photographic Data
- In response to a growing concern that astronomy's rich heritage of historic photographic observations is in danger of becoming lost, a Workshop "To Develop a National Plan for Preserving Astronomical Photographic Data" was held on November 1-3, 2007 at Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute (PARI) in Rosman, NC. Thirty astronomers and archivists from North America and Europe attended the workshop. We present here a summary and recommendations from the committee.
- Presentations about APDA made at conferences and meetings