Sunday, October 26, 2014

TMT Thirty Meter Telscope

A lot has been written lately about the telescope on Mauna Kea, citing what appear to be big numbers, like 18 story building, but it’s a dome not an office block. 
In perspective, Mauna Kea is about 1000 square miles, or about 620,000 acres. The entire TMT structure is less than 2 acres. So the structure will occupy 1/300,000th of the surface of the mountain. In comparison to a newspaper page, it will occupy about as much space as the period at the end of this sentence.

The TMT protesters have right peaceably to assemble and the right to freely exercise their religion. The protesters claim to be followers of an ancient religion, but wasn’t that largely abolished by their King Liholiho almost 200 years ago. The core question is “Do they have the right to impose their particular interpretation of that religion on thousands of other citizens and the world wide scientific community”. 

I have to wonder what the most recent King, Kalakaua, himself an amateur astronomer would have to say.

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