Bill Shupp Software engineer, photographer, musician, space geek

16Nov/120

Lean Telescopes: 25 Years at the Keck Observatory

Today is the last full day of our vacation to Hawaii.  In a couple of hours, we are heading up to the summit of Mauna Kea to see the telescopes and do some star gazing, something I've really been looking forward to given how amazing the night sky has been this week down here at sea level.  In preparation for the trip, I've been reading through some things I picked up at the Keck Observatory Visitor's center yesterday, and was struck by an article in the 2011 Annual Report titled "Reflections on 25 Years at Keck Observatory".  It was written by Deputy Director Hilton Lewis, who started at Keck in 1986 as a young telescope designer, and recalls the two fundamental decisions they made that led to its prominence.  First,"make the world's largest aperture telescope using a hexagonally tiled primary mirror", and second, "build it fast".

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