Good Article: Telescope Mishaps on Earth and in the Heavens

Image (Copy): The Wyoming Infrared Observatory (WIRO). (WIRO)

The New York Times had a good article on various mishaps related to telescopes here on Earth (such as WIRO above) as well as those now floating in space. The story, “From Bullets to ‘Bird Residue,’ the Many Trials of Telescopes,” shares stories about various natural (bird poop) and man-made (dropped tool) events that have left their marks on astronomy.

We have all heard about the misshaped mirror on the Hubble Space Telescope as well as micrometeors hitting the James Webb Space Telescope, but have you heard about the employee who shot and hammered the primary mirror at the McDonald Observatory in West Texas?

Take a look at the article. You will find plenty of stories to amuse you as well as give you pause.