DAYTIME VIEWING: Gottlieb Transit Corridor
Each day at local noon, the new Robert J. and Suzanne Gottlieb Transit Corridor enables visitors to see how the Sun's progress across the sky is linked with time and the calendar. A 22-foot-long engraved star chart illustrates the Sun's annual path through the background stars and the constellations they occupy. In this way, the Sun's light reveals to visitors the unseen sky that is always present but invisible to our view because the Sun is so bright.
DAYTIME VIEWING: Coelostat, triple-beam solar telescope
Griffith Observatory's three solar telescopes bring the Sun directly to visitors in the west rotunda of the Ahmanson Hall of the Sky. On clear days, each of these telescopes provides a different real-time view of our local star, including sunspots and solar flares. The three beams of sunlight for the telescopes are focused into the rotunda by a triple-mirrored tracking device called a coelostat (Latin for 'sky-stopper'), which is located above in the western dome of the building.
The solar telescopes operate only during clear daytime hours.
NIGHTTIME VIEWING: Telescopes
Each night at full dark the Observatory staffs the Zeiss Telescope on the roof. A Telescope Operator will position the telescope and describe all that is being seen through the lens of the "most looked-through telescope in the world".
Many nights the Observatory also has telescopes on the Front Lawn which are staffed by the Observatory Telescope Operators. You will be able to talk to the telescope operators about what is in the sky and enjoy the view.
On any given night, Observatory staff may set up one or more free-standing telescopes on the lawn or East Observation Terrace to enable more people to put their eyeball to the sky.
Once a month, the Los Angeles Astronomical Society and Sidewalk Astronomers hold a star party at the Observatory in which many more telescopes are available for public viewing. These amateur astronomy clubs bring their own telescopes and are happy to share their expertise and their views of the cosmos.