Astrograph, Type A-1, Kodak, WW2 Navigator's Tool
This artifact resides in our Private Collection, yet we welcome inquiries from restorers, museums, or serious enthusiasts. Please email us with the name of the artifact at Curator@AeroAntique.com.
Here is a WW2-era Astrograph, Type A-1, make by Eastman Kodak. This instrument was used in aircraft with a navigator crewman as an aid to determine the position and course of the aircraft during nighttime flying using celestial navigation.
The black projector was installed above a map table at the navigators station at the height specified by the height gauge included in the kit. The star chart for the intended course of the aircraft was selected from among the 7 canisters stored in the wooden case. Each chart had the star map for a given latitude across longitude, all look to be of the northern hemisphere. The start chart film was then installed within the projector so that the film could be transferred across the lighted rectangular glass lens to pinpoint the starting position and then track it across the sky when illuminated by the selected lamp. The film was advanced via the large knobs at the side, which would be facing the navigator at the map table. The lamp projected the star chart image onto the map table below, which would have the ground map of the terrain below. Here's a helpful video on the Astrograph from a fellow enthusiast.
You may encounter an Astrograph among collectors, but you'll look long and hard for one with the projector intact and ALL of the star charts. It's a prize in our collection.