This is an optical pyramid used at the Cassegrain focus on the Hale 200-inch telescope to split light into four beams and sent them into an instrument called the "4-shooter." This array of four CCD-based cameras was a proof-test of the split field concept design for the Wide Field/Planetary camera of the Hubble Space Telescope. The NASM collection holds the complete, working camera including split field optics and two of the original four CCD camera units that were used programmatically on the 200-inch for many years and featured in Richard Preston's "First Light" as a galaxy and quasar finder. The California Institute of Technology donated this object to the Museum in September 1999.
Gift of the Palomar Observatory, California Institute of Technology.