Mauna Kea observatory, Hawaii 1982

Childs, Iraphne R. (1982) Mauna Kea observatory, Hawaii 1982. [Image]

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Mauna Kea (lit. White Mountain), considered dormant, is a shield volcano approx 1 million years old and is Hawaii's highest peak at 4250m (13,769ft), but measured from its base on the sea floor its elevation is 10,000m (33,000ft) high, significantly higher than Mt. Everest. The peak is always snow-capped in winter, sometimes to a snow-depth of several meters. In Hawaiian mythology, the peaks of the volcanoes of the island of Hawaii are sacred ground, and Mauna Kea is the most sacred of all. An ancient law allowed only high-ranking tribal chiefs to visit its peak. With its high altitude, dry environment, and stable airflow, Mauna Kea's summit is one of the best sites in the world for astronomical observation. Thirteen telescopes funded by eleven countries have been constructed at the summit, for scientific research, and comprise the largest such facility in the world. Their construction on "sacred landscape" continues to be a topic of debate. This image, taken in summer from the summit shows one of the observatories and a view of the summit of Mauna Loa on the horizon.

Additional Information

Item Type: Image
Collection: Asia-Pacific Images: 1970s-1990s
Keywords: volcanoes; telescopes
Date Deposited: 16 Oct 2013 13:03
Last Modified: 30 Aug 2014 19:38
Copyright Owner: Copyright Iraphne R. Childs.
CountryState or RegionPlace
United States of AmericaHawaiiMauna Kea
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