Local camera retires

Mark Klaene, the site operations manager for the Apache Point Observatory in Sunspot, discusses how the Sloan Digital Sky Survey imager works Wednesday afternoon at the observatory. Full Story

“Leadership is listening.”

Since: Jan 09

Casper, WY and Alamogordo, NM

#2 Jan 21, 2011
Many will never understand the scope of the work that the imaging camera has accomplished with the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS). But having spent quite a few nights over there with my "dark side" friends, I can tell you personally that watching the universe being imaged "real time" for the first time was an unbelievable feeling.

I sometimes went over there and stood in front of the monitors displaying what was coming off of the camera with my jaw wide open as galaxies upon galaxies were photographed and recorded for research and posterity. Scott Kleinman (the former Lead observer) said to me one night "you know, I'll never cease to be amazed." I can't even describe to you the feeling I had knowing that visually, some of the objects/galaxies I watched slew across the screens were being seen for the very first time.

Otero County has been blessed to have this instrument here on the mountain. The Sloan Digital Sky Survey will feed the astronomical research community with enough data to keep them busy for decades. It's usefulness is a tremendous credit to the hard work by Jim Gunn, Connie Rockosi and all of the "Sloanies" (scientific observers) who have spent night after night "capturing" our universe into digital form for humanity.

A slight correction to this story - Dr. Steph Snedden is not "just" an electrical engineer for the telescope. She is the lead scientific observer and an astronomer on the project. Not only is she a terrific astronomer, but as her friend I can tell you she has a lot of dedication to share the passion of astronomy with others as well.

Southen New Mexico has a lot to be proud of in the realms of astronomical research.

The impact this camera has had in the astronomical community will be felt for many, many years to come.

My heart just bursts with pride as we witness its retirement. But then again, things change and there will be "other" instruments that will help discover new things.

Hmmmmmm...it reminds me of a certain solar telescope that we are in the process of building.

And then people ask me why I'm nuts about this stuff.

Cedar Crest, NM

#3 Jan 21, 2011
galaxyzoo.ORG is the address....not .com

Alamogordo, NM

#4 Jan 21, 2011
I do hope Apache Point stays in operation.

El Paso, TX

#5 Jan 21, 2011
Gorky wrote:
I do hope Apache Point stays in operation.
Me too! I hate going all the way to Taos to go skiing.

“Leadership is listening.”

Since: Jan 09

Casper, WY and Alamogordo, NM

#6 Jan 21, 2011
Gorky wrote:
I do hope Apache Point stays in operation.
Gorky, this is just an "instrument" retirement. Not an indication of closure whatsoever.

Apache Point is alive and well.

So is Sunspot for that matter.

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