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14th of September 2017
Repairs of the Parkes Master Equatorial
(by Tim Wilson)
The picture above shows more detail of the Parkes Master Equatorial drive system. The gold-coloured main hour angle gear-wheel can be seen, but in this image the worm gear that drives it has been removed. Behind it, the "backlash" wheel and worm gear are visible. The "backlash" worm wheel is attached to the upper gear-wheel with springs. The two wheels are each driven by a worm gear at the same speed, however the spring tension between the two wheels eliminates backlash in the drive train and ensures smooth movement across the sky in both directions. During the repairs last week, four old worm gears were replaced with new ones.

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