2009, the International Year of Astronomy (IYA), is almost over. It has been a year-long celebration of the 400th anniversary of Galileo's first astronomical observations.
This week's Palomar History Photo of the Week celebrates the advances in telescopes with an IYA nod from Palomar to Galileo and Isaac Newton.
The photo shows one of the 200-inch opticians on the left looking through a replica of Galileo's telescope. The telescope is balanced on the shoulder of chief optician Marcus Brown. Behind them stands the completed 200-inch mirror in the optical shop at Caltech. In the mirror's center hole is an exact size replica (in artwork only) of Isaac Newton's first reflecting telescope.
The photo was likely taken during the fall of 1947. I would like to thank the Brown Family for their donation of this photo and other items to Palomar Observatory earlier this year.