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The Marina Towers Observatory in SwanseaThe Marina Swansea City_of_Swansea Wales
Located on the foreshore of Swansea Bay within the prestigious Marina Development is a twin towered structure that has been likened to a space rocket on its launch pad. This similarity is very appropriate as it is the Marina Towers Observatory Site of the Swansea Astronomical Society. Its features are:- 1. Observatory - The fourth floor observatory houses the largest telescope in Wales. It is a 20" Shafer-Maksutov catadioptic telescope which has the further claim to fame in that it is the largest telescope of its type in the world. It was designed and constructed by a Society member, Dr. Fred. C. Jenkins, and must be seen to be appreciated as a fine example of engineering and aesthetic design. In 2006 the Society purchased, from its public and school donations, a Coronado solar telescope for the safe observation of the Sun during the summer public openings. 2. Observation Platform - Sited on the third floor, this level is used by the Mumbles Yacht Club as a starter point for its yacht races in the bay and provides you with the opportunity to capture on film the breathtaking views of the Bay. 3. Small lecture theatre - this is located on the second floor and is used for talks on the stars and other deep space objects during Open Evenings. 4. Solar System Model - Visitors to the tower can not help being impressed with the Solar System model that is installed in the stair tower. This model has been constructed and erected by the Craft Department of Penyrheol Comprehensive School and is an educational asset to the site. It transforms the stair tower from being purely functional to an area to be enjoyed and studied during the climb to the observatory. It is believed to be Britain's largest scale model of the Sun's family on a single site. 5. Astronomical Exhibition and Main Lecture Room - The ground floor exhibition room is the first contact point for visitors to the site. It is here, during the summer, that you can explore the wonders of the universe by browsing through the many posters and astronomical books. During the winter and Spring months, the Society organises Open Nights, or "Marina Towers Star Parties" for the public to come along and view the heavens through the main telescopes and members' telescopes that will be assembled on site.