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EAC Photo Displays Feature Mount Graham Telescopes, Underscore Scientific Discovery

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EAC Photo Displays Feature Mount Graham Telescopes, Underscore Scientific Discovery

By Kris McBride

Thatcher, AZ—A series of photographic displays that feature research telescopes located at the Mount Graham International Observatory and the spectacular images they produce was recently installed at Eastern Arizona College’s (EAC) Academic Programs and Administration buildings.

“From the Milky Way to extremely distant galaxies, the Mount Graham International Observatory opens up the universe right outside our doors,” said Mark Bryce, Eastern Arizona College president. “These photographic exhibits will expand our students’ vision and show what ingenuity, curiosity and imagination can accomplish.”

Providing a unique vantage into space exploration, viewers learn detailed information about the three telescopes atop Mount Graham and peer deep into space by observing images they capture. The Large Binocular Telescope (LBT), the world’s largest telescope, is featured in a photo that captures the apparent motion of the stars across the sky due to the rotation of the Earth. The Heinrich Hertz Submillimeter Telescope, a radio telescope that allows astronomers to observe at millimeter wavelengths the light from molecules in the clouds of gas from which stars form, is dramatically displayed underneath the Milky Way. The Alice P. Lennon Telescope, owned by the Vatican Observatory, is shown beneath the Moon with both its primary and secondary mirrors which are known to be among the most exact surfaces ever made for a ground-based telescope.

“These displays present the product of the human endeavor of scientific discovery,” said Dr. Buell T. Jannuzi, head of the Department of Astronomy and director of the Steward Observatory of the University of Arizona. “From the local employees who maintain and operate the facilities to the scientists from across the world who use the facilities to seek answers to basic, but sometimes complex questions, these images will hopefully inspire those who view them while they are also reminded that it takes many people to search for new insights and ultimately improve our understanding of the universe.”

To learn more about the Mount Graham International Observatory, the public is encouraged to contact EAC’s Discovery Park at (928) 428-6260. Weekend tours of the Mount Graham International Observatory are offered from mid-May through October, weather permitting. The tours feature a scenic trip up Mount Graham that focuses on the mountain’s rich geology, history and diversity of life, a lunch near the mountain’s summit, and a guided tour of the three telescope observatories.