How I Became the NRAO Electroplater / Electroformer

Astronomy, Chemistry
[caption id="attachment_9605" align="alignright" width="480"] NRAO Green Bank Telescope.[/caption] Little did I know my future lay with the NRAO. As early as the 8th grade, my teacher informed us we needed to choose a career. I chose astronomy. My mother informed me, “No. There is no future in astronomy.” I was downhearted! Her friend’s husband worked for Union Carbide. I asked Mom if chemistry was acceptable? She said that was fine. Curiously, in high school I became a close friend of a kid from Canada who loved chemistry, Charles Harris. I greatly admired him. He was instrumental in my growing appreciation of chemistry. From College to Employment Beginning in my junior and senior years at high school, and later at college, I found myself drawn to organic chemistry and to quantum…
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Near Death Experience: The Collapse of a Telescope

[caption id="attachment_9569" align="alignright" width="480"] The demise of the 300-foot telescope. Image: NRAO[/caption] A near death experience at an astronomy observatory? My son and I attended the National Radio Astronomy Observatory Green Bank West Virginia 140-foot radio telescope 50th year celebration. Most of my fellow attendees were new to me. I'd never met them before. This was because, first, many of them were from Green Bank, WV (I had been in Charlottesville, VA), and secondly, they were older than I am, having worked on the 140-foot from early on. A Casual Acquaintance - Near Death Experience One person I introduced myself to (I have learned to introduce myself to strangers, a wondrous practice, really) told me her husband was a mechanic on the 300-foot telescope that completely collapsed one night about…
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50th Anniversary Celebration of the 140′ Radio Telescope at Green Bank WV

[caption id="attachment_9549" align="alignleft" width="300"] NRAO 140-foot radio telescope at Green Bank, WV.[/caption] We want to explore the history of the 140′ Radio Telescope... Sometimes people are honored for their achievements in the sciences. On Tuesday, October 13, 2015, a most interesting object was recognized for its groundbreaking exploration in the field of astrochemistry. It is the 140′ Radio Telescope completed in December of 1964. It is owned and operated by the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) located in Green Bank, West Virginia. As a retiree of the Charlottesville, Virginia Central Development Lab, I was invited. It was an invitation I heartily accepted. Official Statement This NRAO public announcement of the event includes the proclamation by the Governor of West Virginia of the historical importance of the telescope. Included on the…
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