It's part of a quest, Arniel's Endeavor (ought to be "Endeavour"...lousy American spelling :p ). You'll find him in the College of Winterhold. You need to find three of them to complete the quest, but I've only found two thus far, both in Mzulft (one in the storeroom, the other in the first area of Mzulft proper). If anyone knows where one might find another, that'd be awesome.
I've searched Alftand and Mzinchaleft, but come up empty, and twice through Mzulft. I'm almost willing to bet the third is somewhere in Mzulft still, but I bloody well can't seem to find it. :-/
On the same note but different issue at the end of a dwemer ruin I found this gold table/device and when I interact with it it says I do not have the item for it. Anyone find this thing and activate it? Ran in to it on one of the dark brotherhood side assassinations.