This fall, Northwestern University will begin construction of a twintower observatory as the first step in its projected Benjamin F. Lindheimer Astronomical Research Center. The new observatory, designed for on‐site research by students and faculty, will cost almost $1 million and will be supported by matching grants from the National Science Foundation and the family of the late Mr. Lindheimer. The facility will consist of two 70‐foot‐high domed towers connected by a structure housing a telescope control room and various equipment. A 40‐inch Cassegrainian/Coudé reflecting telescope will be the principal optical instrument in one of the domes, and the addition of an electronic image conversion device to this telescope is expected to increase its light detecting ability an estimated 100 times. The dome on top of the other observatory tower will house a 16‐inch reflector telescope. At the base of the towers will be the mechanical, electronic, and optical shops, as well as a photographic laboratory. The twin‐tower observatory will allow new research programs, notably in image orthicon spectroscopy. Head of the research center is J. Allen Hynek, chairman of the Astronomy Department at Northwestern and director of the University's Dearborn Observatory.

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