The UC Davis Observatory is located on the roof of Hutchison Hall. It is not open to the public, and is used for the UC Davis advanced astronomy labs. Students use the observatory equipment to image Messier 51: the Whirlpool Galaxy to determine star formation rates.
The Observatory dome was Built in the 1960s. At that time Huchison Hall was the UC Davis Physics building. When physics moved the dome remained. In the 2000s, Professor Anthony Tyson renovated the observatory, replacing the large Newtonian Telescope with a computer controlled apparatus with a CCD camera. The Observatory is currently maintained by Professor Tyson, Professor and his graduate student Daniel Polin.
*Images taken by Daniel Polin