Anglo-Australian Telescope Hydraulic Plant Replacement
Department of Industry and Science | Published February 13, 2015 - Deadline March 10, 2015
The Australian Astronomical Observatory (AAO) is Australia’s national optical astronomy observatory. It operates the 3.9m Anglo-Australian Telescope (AAT) and the 1.2m UK Schmidt Telescope (UKST) on behalf of the astronomical community of Australia.
The Anglo-Australian Telescope (AAT) is a 3.9 m equatorially mounted telescope, commissioned in 1974 and operated by the AAO. The telescope is located at Siding Spring Observatory, 26km outside Coonabarabran, NSW Australia. The telescope itself has a total mass of 326 Tonne, which is supported via 5 hydrostatic bearings, fed by a hydraulic power unit.
The hydraulic system is now over 40 years old and past its original design life, with the majority of the components either out dated, not serviceable or replacement components no longer available.
A heat removal system was added to the hydrostatic power unit several years ago to improve the seeing quality of the telescope by removing the heat from the hydraulic oil, before being pumped to the hydrostatic bearings. This is also in a poor state of repair, compounding the reliability of the entire system. The project is to replace the existing hydraulic unit with an integral oil cooling system.
Accordingly, the Department invites suitably qualified consultants/contractors to submit a tender for the replacement of the Hydraulic Plant of the Telescope Drive System.