Thank you...

... for taking the time to stop by. I hope some of these ponderings will resonate with you.

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(Unless stated otherwise, all text & pictures are © Lee Labuschagne, all rights reserved.)

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The best is yet to come for astronomy in SA

Among the many electronic newsletters on various subjects that end up in my inbox, the ones that I always glance at least briefly, are the astronomy-related ones.

Together with regular “clicks” to visit links via the places like the Astronomy Picture of the Day and numerous newsfeeds, the newsletters from NASA, JPL,,, the Planetary Society and various astronomy clubs & societies around the world are very useful to keep up to date with relevant developments.

Naturally, for professional as well as amateur astronomers the “looking up” is the main thing. Professionals worry about funds and research project deadlines if their domes remain closed and data cannot be gathered from ancient light hitting their mirrors. Big, complicated research telescopes like SALT are not commissioned overnight and running them smoothly takes the technical expertise of some of the best minds on the planet. The astronomers find ways to work around problems and use existing data to continue their work or plan new projects from their offices – indeed, their telescopes no longer have the traditional eye pieces and modern research astronomers are mostly desk bound.