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 Nobel Prize in Physics - CFHT Telescope Mauna Kea
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South Sandwich Islands
8372 Posts

Posted - 10/09/2019 :  16:27:59  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
The Nobel Prize in Physics was awarded for ďPHYSICAL COSMOLOGY AND AN EXOPLANET ORBITING A SOLAR-TYPE STAR.Ē Some of the research on exoplanets was conducted at the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope on Mauna Kea. Itís not often we hear the words Nobel Prize & Hawaii mentioned together so letís hope our politicians, newspapers, and TV news programs take note. Itís extraordinary news for the astronomy community on Big Island. Hopefully TomK can fill us in with more details. (I realize this story fits nicely in the Discoveries On Mauna Kea thread, but itís a big deal and I thought deserved itís own page.)

The UBC group conducted their search for substellar companions at the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope (CFHT), a 3.6-m reflector.

From the Nobel web page:
THE ROYAL SWEDISH ACADEMY OF SCIENCES has as its aim to promote the sciences and strengthen their influence in society.

Yes, good idea.


8564 Posts

Posted - 10/09/2019 :  20:08:55  Show Profile  Visit TomK's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Thanks, HOTPE. The CFHT was involved in the project in a fairly minimal sense in that it helped test many of the methods needed to detect exoplanets around solar-type stars back in the mid-90s but wasn't directly involved in the actual observations. Michel Mayor was at the IfA around the time of the discovery and remember talking to him at the summit not long after I arrived here, probably late 1996, when he showed me the results. It was a huge achievement at the time.

The Keck on Mauna Kea has been involved in Nobel Prize-winning observations in the past, specifically those that led to the discovery that the expansion of the universe is accelerating:


I'm pretty sure the recent discovery and image of Powehi will result in a Nobel Prize sometime in the near future. The two Mauna Kea observatories involved, the SMA and the JCMT, were absolutely crucial in obtaining the image.
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