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Telescope

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NEWS
September 11, 2009 | By Sam Wood INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
For five months, the telescope built by the master himself served as the centerpiece of the Franklin Institute's summer exhibition "Galileo, the Medici and the Age of Astronomy. " In that span - which Derrick Pitts, the institute's chief astronomer, described as "a semi-religious experience" - the museum's attendance swelled beyond expectations. Though museum-goers were not allowed to handle the priceless artifact, it did not take much imagination to put themselves in the 17th-century scientist's shoes.
NEWS
March 27, 1986 | By David Lieber, Inquirer Staff Writer
For Ed Kaczanowicz, seeing Halley's comet, perched in the pre-dawn southeastern sky near Saturn, Mars and the constellation Sagittarius, was nothing compared to seeing the hundreds of people lined up outside his mini- observatory in Upper Dublin Township. "The crowd is a bigger spectacle here than the comet," said Kaczanowicz, a research technician for the physics department at Temple University's Ambler campus. He was charged with the difficult task of giving everyone in line a quick glimpse of the comet.
NEWS
June 20, 1991 | By Mary Anne Janco, Special to The Inquirer
Amateur astronomers can catch a glimpse of a rare sight - three planets in the same visual area - during a free star party tomorrow night. The last time the planets - Venus, Mars and Jupiter - were in the same visual area was during the Revolutionary War, according to Marilyn Michalski, president of the Delaware Valley Amateur Astronomers. The club will sponsor a public viewing session of a wide range of celestial sights tomorrow from dark until 11 p.m. at the upper parking lot of the Harriton High School on North Ithan Avenue between Old Gulph Road and Morris Avenue in Rosemont.
NEWS
July 23, 1989 | By Dan Hardy, Special to The Inquirer
As an astronomer, it is Wulff Heintz's job to take the long view of things - both literally and figuratively. Literally because Heintz, a professor of astronomy at Swarthmore College, spends most of his time looking at stars that are many light-years from Earth. Figuratively because it often takes decades before a star deviates from its expected appearance or location, which indicates something unusual and interesting is going on. "A few of the stars I'm studying I know are interesting now. " said the German-born Heintz, 59. "Some of them will become interesting long after I'm dead.
LIVING
December 18, 2000 | By Faye Flam, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Though it has only been running full-force for about a year, a small telescope in New Mexico has already broken the record for finding the most distant object ever known. It has also discovered scores of cosmic exotica, including a number of the star-planet hybrids called brown dwarfs. The telescope is designed to carry out the Sloan Digital Sky Survey - an ambitious attempt to conduct a census of the universe. Over the next five years it will scan its camera over one-fourth of the sky to map out the locations of about 100 million objects - everything from previously undetected asteroids in our solar system to galaxies millions or billions of light-years away.
NEWS
July 18, 2005 | By Faye Flam INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
To get the clearest possible view of the heavens you need to get above Earth's atmosphere, but you don't necessarily have to get there by space shuttle. Last month an international collaboration led by the University of Pennsylvania lofted a telescope to the edge of outer space on an enormous balloon. As it flew from Sweden to western Canada, it observed dusty regions where new stars are being born millions of light years away. That may help explain how stars and planets are formed from stardust.
NEWS
April 2, 2009 | By Christopher Yasiejko FOR THE INQUIRER
The Italian museum's director pulled out a stack of letters and, one by one, laid them atop his desk at the Institute and Museum of the History of Science in Florence. It was late 2007 and appeals were pouring in from museums in China, Korea, Germany, New York, Chicago, and a host of cities around the globe, though the International Year of Astronomy was still more than a year away. "Tutti vogliono il mio telescopio," Paolo Galluzzi said. "Everyone wants my telescope," the only remaining functional telescope made by Galileo Galilei, whom Albert Einstein called "the father of modern physics - indeed, of modern science altogether.
NEWS
November 5, 2000 | By Susan Weidener, INQUIRER SUBURBAN STAFF
Mike Turco first saw the rings of Saturn through his telescope three years ago. And he has never forgotten the experience. "It's the most beautiful sight in the heavens," said Turco, who is president of the Chester County Astronomical Society. The group holds "star parties" to view planets, stars and galaxies. "We try to get a dark night when there is no full moon and a place away from the lights of towns and cities," said Turco, 54, of Thornbury. For that reason, star parties often are held at the Brandywine Valley Association property, consisting of woods and open fields on Route 842, west of West Chester.
NEWS
October 25, 1990 | By Ralph Vigoda, Inquirer Staff Writer
Louis Green remembers the days he could walk out the door of his building on the Haverford College campus and see the Milky Way shivering in the sky. "You could even see the fainter parts," said Green, a retired astronomy and physics professor at the school. "What a gorgeous site. You could never see that now. " Blame that on Thomas Edison: Light pollution in the Philadelphia area makes it impossible to see any but the brightest stars. And even with a telescope, the brightness makes it harder to see heavenly bodies.
NEWS
September 18, 1986
The Sept. 5 Steve Lopez column was an incisive, witty, devastating exposure of various aspects of the Anti-Graffiti Network paycheck fiasco. He managed to telescope this with several other recent city imbroglios with skilled humor that reminded me of A.J. Liebling. Donald True Van Deusen Philadelphia.
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NEWS
February 13, 2015 | By Edward Colimore, Inquirer Staff Writer
WALL, N.J. - The five-story satellite dish made history nearly six decades ago, early in America's space race with the Soviet Union. It tracked the first U.S. space launch, Explorer 1, that year, and received the first hurricane data from the TIROS 1 satellite in 1960. Then the dish was mothballed in the late 1970s as more modern equipment came into use, and eventually was relegated to the status of science relic, part of the museum collection of the InfoAge Science Center at Camp Evans, a historic former Army Signal Corps center in Monmouth County.
NEWS
December 27, 2013 | By Julie Zauzmer, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Through the wide opening in a rooftop dome on the engineering building at Widener University, the most prominent feature of the view is a brilliantly lit Days Inn billboard. Focus a bit more, and you'll notice a cellphone tower, a patchwork of illuminated city buildings, and an airplane blinking across a grayish night sky. Harry Augensen has made it his mission to show residents of Chester that there are stars there, too. On many Monday and Friday evenings, he invites community members of all ages to the roof of Kirkbride Hall, where he runs Widener's observatory.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 28, 2013 | By A.D. Amorosi, For The Inquirer
Renowned for her dazzlingly melodic art-pop since 2005's glossy Eye to the Telescope , Scottish singer KT Tunstall took a more somber turn with this year's Invisible Empire // Crescent Moon . Throughout this elegantly atmospheric album (coproduced by Howie Gelb in the Tucson brush), Tunstall touches on life's rich pageant at its saddest: the decay of the body, the end of romance, the finality of death. There's a neorealist candor on this spare album unheard in previous Tunstall works.
NEWS
May 16, 2013
Planet-hunter needs repair LOS ANGELES - NASA's Kepler planet-hunting telescope is broken, potentially jeopardizing a mission that opened up whole new possibilities on life outside the solar system. If engineers can't find a fix, the malfunction could mean an end to the $600 million mission's planet search, although the space agency wasn't ready to call it quits Wednesday. "I wouldn't call Kepler down-and-out just yet," said NASA sciences chief John Grunsfeld. NASA said the spacecraft lost the second of four wheels that control the telescope's orientation in space.
NEWS
March 23, 2013 | By Peter Mucha, Philly.com
The world's largest telescope won't be in its full glory till summer, but already a team of scientists, including a Penn astrophysicist, has used it to make discoveries about the early universe. Their project, reported in the journal Nature last week, examined dozens of bright ancient galaxies where gas and dust were churning into suns, and found that star birth then happened at a remarkable rate - a thousand times that seen in the Milky Way today. Water was even detected in one of the two most distant galaxies, which were dated to about 12.7 billion years ago - more than 8 billion years before the Earth was even a twinkle in the solar system's sky. "We see that already within a billion years after the Big Bang happened," said James Aguirre, an assistant professor in the University of Pennsylvania's physics and astronomy department.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 30, 2012 | By Faye Flam, Inquirer Staff Writer
Serendipity has been known to catapult science to new heights, but few lucky accidents could compete with the windfall astrophysicists picked up from the biggest, most expensive blunder in the history of spy satellites. After spending an estimated half billion dollars on two telescopes designed to spy on earthly activities, the federal government gave up and offered them for civilian use. Astronomers quickly realized that turning the scopes from spy craft into science craft could open up a new view of the universe.
NEWS
August 11, 2012
Sir Bernard Lovell, 98, a pioneer in radar and radio telescopes from the days when the technology helped save Britain in World War II until the beginning of the space age, died Monday at his home in Swettenham Village, England. Sir Bernard, who became widely known through his books, lectures, and BBC television appearances, was especially renowned for creating the Jodrell Bank radio telescope, the only antenna that could track rockets in space in the early years of the space race.
NEWS
June 2, 2012 | By Tom Avril, Inquirer Staff Writer
David Rittenhouse spent months fine-tuning his handmade instruments and setting up a small observatory on the grounds of his farm, 20 miles outside the bustling young city of Philadelphia. On a clear June day in 1769, he was ready to participate in a landmark moment in science's efforts to measure the heavens. The rare event was called the transit of Venus, and it can be seen once again Tuesday evening - likely the last such chance for anyone now alive. For several hours, the path of Venus will take it directly across our view of the sun - looking something like a small blueberry against a fiery volleyball, for those with a telescope and proper eye protection (number 14 welder's goggles will work)
NEWS
April 20, 2012 | By Faye Flam, Inquirer Staff Writer
When people think of Philadelphia, they might imagine cheesesteaks and Rocky, the Phillies and the Flyers. They don't necessarily think of our city as an intellectual hub or a center of scientific research, but they should, said Steve Snyder, vice president for exhibit and program development at the Franklin Institute. This region is packed with top-notch universities, illustrious science museums, and booming technology-oriented businesses. Philadelphia is among the top five U.S. cities in National Institutes of Health grants, Snyder said.
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