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Author:  Fanie
Published in:  Harties Heritage/Erfenis
Gerestoureerde Sterrewag Teleskoop

HOEV: OPNAME VAN BESIENSWAARDIGHEDE                  Nr 018

HEHA: SURVEY OF HERITAGE SITES                                     No 018

 

LEIDENSE STERREWAG

DATUM 1954

SAEA BESKERMING (60jr) ja

VERKLAAR nee. GELYS nee

GPS data:X 27.52.33 Y –25.46.12

HARTBEESPOORT 482JQ. GEDEEELTE 4

PAD: pad na Oberon en Toppieshoek vanaf P31-1

EIENAAR / KONTAKPERSOON: Pretoria Tegnikon (012 2441425)

 

In 1923 het die bekende Suid-Afrikaans sterrekundige, Robert Innes, met die samewerking van ‘n jarelange vriend, Willem de Sitter van Nederland, ‘n ooreenkoms met die Leidense Universiteit aangegaan waarvolgens wetenskaplikes van albei lande toegang tot mekaar se fasiliteite sou hê. In 1938 het die regering van Suid-Afrika fondse bewillig vir die oprig van ‘n nuwe gebou op die gronde van die Unie-Sterrewag in Johannesburg. Dit is met ‘n 16 duim (392 mm) astrograaf toegerus, bekend as die Rockefeller teleskoop.

 

 

Met verloop van tyd het dit nodig geword om hierdie sterrewag verder van die stad en sy ligte te verskuif en is op Hartbeespoortdam besluit wat destyds nog redelik onbewoon was. Hierdie sterrewag is dan met die Franklin-Adamson teleskoop toegerus wat alreeds jare lank diens gedoen het. In 1957 sou die Rockefeller gevolg het maar in plek daarvan is die wêreldklas 36 duim (880mm) teleskoop aangeskaf wat vandag nog daar is.

 

Dr Theodore Waveren, een van die wêreld se mees gerespekteerde astronome, het die waarnemings by die Leidense Sterrewag – soos dit daarna bekend was – gedoen. Die doel van die sterrewag was om waarnemings (fotos) wat hier gemaak is na Leiden te stuur vir analise. Alhoewel hierdie sterrewag deurentyd deur Leidense wetenskaplikes hanteer is, was dit steeds die besit en ‘n “buitestasie” van die Uniesterrewag in Johannesburg.

 

Op 1 Januarie 1972 is daar verder op sterrewagte in Suid-Afrika ingekort en is die Unie-sterrewag (wat toe as die Republieksterrewag bekend was) gesluit ten gunste van die Suid-Afrikaanse sterrewag in Kaapstad met sy buitepos op Sutherland waar die lugtoestande die gunstigste is.

 

Die Leidense sterrewag is saam met die Uniesterrewag amptelik gesluit maar sy teleskope is nie verwyder nie en kan vandag nog gebruik word nadat dit deur die Pretoria Tegnikon se personeel gerestoureer is.

 

 

 

LEIDEN UNIVERSITY OBSERVATORY

DATE 1954

SAHRA PROTECTION (60YR) yes

DECLARED MONUMENT: no. LISTED: no

GPS data: X 27.52.33 Y –25.46.12

HARTBEESPOORT 482JQ.PORTION 4

ROAD: road to Oberon and Toppieshoek from P31-1

OWNER / CONTACT PERSON: Pretoria Tegnikon (012 2441425)

 

In 1923 the well-known South African astronomer Robert Innes, in cooperation with an old friend, Willem de Sitter of the Netherlands, entered into an agreement with the University of Leiden which gave scientists of both countries access to one another’s facilities.  In 1938 the government of South Africa made funds available for the erection of a new building on the premises of the Union Observatory in Johannesburg.  It was equipped with a 16-inch (392 mm) astrograph known as the Rockefeller telescope.

 

In the course of time it became necessary to move the observatory further away from the city lights.  The chosen site was at Hartbeespoortdam, which was not very densely populated at the time.  This observatory was equipped with the Franklik-Adamson telescope, which had been used for many years.  The Rockefeller was supposed to be next in line, but the world-class 36 inch (880 mm) telescope, which is still there, was bought instead.

 

Dr Theodore Waveren, one of the world’s most respected astronomers did the observations at the Leiden Observatory (as it was called afterwards).  The purpose of this observatory was to send the observations (photos) that were made there to Leiden in Holland for analysis.  Although this observatory was run by scientists from Leiden all the time, it was still the possession and an outpost of the Union Observatory in Johannesburg.

 

On the 1st of January 1972 the number of observatories in South Africa were further reduced and the Union Observatory (then known as the Republican Observatory) was closed in favour of the South African Observatory in Cape Town with its outpost in Sutherland, where the skies are the most favourable for observation purposes.

 

The Leiden Observatory was officially closed together with the Union Observatory, but the telescopes have not been removed and can still be used today after a restoration by Pretoria Technikon staff.

 

 


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