astronomy



The Milky Way over the Southern African Large Telescope in the Southern Hemisphere, as seen on July 18, 2017. Photo by Jeff Miller, UW-Madison
Today (yesterday, as you read this) we departed Johannesburg, headed toward Madison by way of Atlanta. As I type this sentence, we are 7,371 miles away, six miles above the Earth, soon to be over ocean. Our South African journey culminated as it began, in the Cradle of Humankind, in pursuit of […]

Gifts and serendipity





Planetary nebula NGC 2818, a gaseous shroud of a dying, sun-like star in the southern constellation Pyxis.
Putting telescopes and astronomical instruments in space has long been a UW-Madison specialty. Since at least the early 1960s, when the late Wisconsin astronomer Arthur D. Code devised a cigar-box sized photometer for the X-15, the first rocket-powered plane to soar briefly in space, UW-Madison has been developing hardware – […]

Hubble and beyond






P1020117
Thinking a lot about the Hubble Space Telescope this week. Friday, April 24, 2015, marks twenty-five years in orbit for the telescope whose glorious imagery has changed the way humans think about astronomy and space. I was lucky to be a UW-Madison science writer all those years ago and had […]

Covering Hubble: A Reminder from Deep in the Closet