Hawaii's astronomy sector generated a statewide economic impact of $168 million in 2012, and the Big Island was the major beneficiary, researchers at the University of Hawaii Economic Research Organization have discovered.
Using the latest available numbers, UHERO reported $88 million in astronomy-related expenditures in 2012, with $58 million of the spending and $92 million of the economic impact on the Big Island, where most of the state's telescopes are located. more »
The University of Hawaii on Thursday approved a plan to sublease land at the summit of Mauna Kea for construction of the world’s largest optical telescope.
The Board of Regents voted 15 to 1 to approve subleasing the land atop the Big Island volcano for the Thirty Meter Telescope. The university leases summit land, which hosts about a dozen telescopes in total, from the state. more »
In an important milestone for the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) project, Japan, one of the project’s five international partners, has reiterated its support for next-generation astronomical observatory, clearing funds, which constitute one-fourth of the project. more »
The Thirty Meter Telescope, in limbo for more than a year, moved a huge step closer to approval with the release Friday of a long-awaited hearing officer's report in support of the University of Hawaii's request to build the giant observatory. more »
A team of astronomers have proved it's possible to see volcanic eruptions on Io — a moon of Jupiter — from our perch on Earth hundreds of millions of miles away. The team used three large telescopes (8 to 10 meters in diameter) to watch over Io during the past 8 years: W.M. Keck II and Gemini North at Mauna Kea, Hawaii, and Chile's Very Large Telescope No. 4.
Franck Marchis, lead investigator of the study, estimates there are 7 telescopes in the world that can do the same kind of searches today, but there are more telescopes under construction that will make the technology even better. When TMT is ready in 2021, the images it will produce will be just 22 miles in resolution, Marchis said. more »
How did the first stars and galaxies bring the young universe out of its dark ages and into the light? The Kavli Foundation spoke with three prominent researchers about the hunt for the first stars and galaxies, and how direct and indirect observations are helping them get closer. The participants included Caltech astronomy professor and TMT Board member Richard Ellis, joined by astronomers George Becker and Avi Loeb.. more »
President Barack Obama announced his intent to appoint TMT Board Chair Henry Yang to the Administration post: Member, President's Committee on the National Medal of Science. Dr. Yang joins several other appointees to key Administration posts.
President Obama said, "These fine public servants bring both a depth of experience and tremendous dedication to their new roles. Our nation will be well-served by these individuals, and I look forward to working with them in the months and years to come."
Dr. Yang is currently the chair of the Association of Pacific Rim Universities, a member of the Kavli Foundation board, and Chair of the Thirty Meter Telescope project. more »
The science of astronomy is witnessing a resurgence in India, with the Indian Government pushing for participation in several international projects, said Shrinivas Kulkarni, professor of astronomy and planetary sciences at the California Institute of Technology, US. more »
On November 15, 2011, Dr. Masanori Iye was decorated with the Medal with Purple Ribbon (Shiju Houshou). This honor was given to him not only for his excellence in leading cutting-edge research in astronomy but also for his numerous contributions to the academic world during his lengthy career. Dr. Iye is currently the Director of the TMT (Thirty Meter Telescope) Project Office of the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ). more »
Governor Neil Abercrombie and University of Hawai‘i President MRC Greenwood hosted a reception on Nov. 11 at Washington Place, Honolulu, for officials and community leaders associated with the proposed Thirty Meter Telescope. Among the guests were TMT officials, representatives from Big Island and astronomy communities; federal, state and UH officials; and benefactors. UH Hilo Chancellor Donald Straney attended. more »