Inside the Hobby-Eberly Telescope

I have lunch with two astronomers from UT Austin, who had come out to Marfa for the weekend, while we wait for the afternoon tour at Chinati. They tell me not to miss the nearby McDonald Observatory, and they’re right.

This is a visible-light telescope built on the cheap: it’s a set of hexagonal mirrors which can be repositioned slightly to focus the dish; the entire dome can be rotated but only on a fixed axis, so it covers only part of the sky.

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