Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Eyes on the Skies

In celebration of the International Year of Astronomy the European Southern Observatory has produced a movie and book known as Eyes on the Skies. Follow the link and you can watch the whole thing in HD.

It explores the many facets of the telescope — the historical development, the scientific importance, the technological breakthroughs, and also the people behind this ground-breaking invention, their triumphs and failures. It is presented by Dr. J, aka Dr. Joe Liske, a professional astronomer from the European Southern Observatory and host of the Hubblecast video podcast. The DVD runs for 60 minutes and contains subtitles in several languages.

The second episode, Bigger is Better, is embedded below. It follows some of the story of George Ellery Hale, the development of Yerkes Observatory (note to narrator: Yerkes is pronounced "yer keys") Mt. Wilson and Palomar.

The show is freely available for TV broadcasters and for public events carried out by educators, science centers, planetariums, amateur astronomers etc.

Update: I had posted a link to the video via YouTube, but it is no longer available. In addition to the link above, you can also, find the video here on Hulu.

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