Hawaii scientist awarded grant to advance telescope

HILO — A University of Hawaii scientist has received a $1.1 million grant to install an advanced mirror to the university’s telescope.

The Hawaii Tribune-Herald reported Friday that astronomer Christoph Baranec was awarded the grant by the National Science Foundation to install an adaptive mirror to the university’s telescope at the Mauna Kea Observatories on the Big Island.

Baranec says the mirror is expected to pass its design phase this year and could be installed by 2021.

Officials say the mirror requires about 10 times less power and allows the 50-year-old telescope to deliver images comparable to those produced by the Hubble Space Telescope.

Scientists say the mirror changes its shape by tens of microns or about the width of a human hair to eliminate distortions caused by the atmosphere.

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Information from: Hawaii Tribune-Herald, http://www.hawaiitribune-herald.com/

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