ING's photographic plate library is located on the northern side of the 2nd floor of the Isaac Newton Telescope (INT)
building (location map
). Please contact the current librarian to obtain acess.
It consists of 4500 transparent and 1000 opaque
photographic plates approximately and two machines: one for measuring distances
on the plates and another one to take polaroid photographs. Plates cover the
whole sky in different filters. This video by Brady Haran shows the plate library.
These are the features of the available
surveys (for further information about these atlases please visit the UK Schmidt Telescope Unit &
Plate Library of the Royal Observatory Edinburgh):
Palomar Sky Survey (PSS), +overlays to identify the objects on the plates.
Opaque plates. -42°<DEC<+90°.|
Palomar Observatory Sky Survey (POSSII) in filters B and R, covering
894 fields in 0°<DEC<+90°. These plates were taken by the Oschin (48-inch) Schmidt telescope
on Palomar mountain. Fields of view and scale are similar to the SERC survey
|ESO/SERC sky atlas in
filters J and R, covering -20°>DEC>-90°. The first major task of the UKST was to survey the southern sky south of
dec -20 on IIIa-J emulsion.
Plates taken through the GG395 filter on 606 centres spaced at intervals of
5 degrees form the blue
(3950-5400A) half of the ESO/SERC Southern Sky Survey. The plates are
sky-limited with a limiting
magnitude of Bj=22.5 and were taken between 1974 and 1987.
The matching red plates (6300-6900A) were taken with the ESO 1m Schmidt
Telescope in Chile. Film
and glass sets of the ESO/SERC Southern Sky Atlas have been made at the ESO
Laboratories at Garching, Munich.
ESO plates are 5.4°×5.4° at a scale of 67.6 arcsec/mm, and SERC
plates are 6.4°×6.4° at 67.2 arcsec/mm.
SERC EJ Sky Survey in filter J. It consists of 288 plates covering
0°>DEC>-15° taken by UKST.
The plates are
6.5°×6.5° at 65.7 arcsec/mm at the telescope.|
|SERC I/SR atlas of
the Milky Way and Magellanic Clouds. The UKST has taken
pairs of plates on the 151 fields with dec < 0 and |b| < 10 plus 12 fields
the Magellanic clouds. The exposures have been deep I-plates (IV-N emulsion
+ RG715 filter) and
matching short exposure red plates (IIIa-F emulsion + RG630 filter); the
limiting magnitude is about
I=19. The plates were taken between 1978 and 1985.|
These are some interesting plates:
|Object Name||Plate Number|
|M45 Pleiades Open Cluster||482|
|M51 Whirpool Galaxy||270|
|Triffid (M20) and Lagoon (M8) Nebulae||521*|
|NGC 7000 North America Nebula||286|
|M13 Globular Cluster||391|
|M42 Orion Nebula||768*|
|Omega Centauri and Centaurus A||270*|
|NGC 1952 Crab Nebula||554|
|M31 Andromeda Galaxy||295|
|Large Magellanic Cloud||56,57*|
|Small Magellanic Cloud||28,29*|
|Coma/Virgo Cluster of Galaxies||644,645,716,717|
|NGC 3031 Spiral Galaxy||61|
|*: Southern chart|
When working in the plate library please remember to put back all charts on the shelves and replace dust covers when you finish. Leave the plate
library tidy. Thanks.