Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Bad luck with travel and weather

The lack of blogging in the past few days has been due to some adventures in travel. Two delayed flights, two unexpected nights in hotels, and many other adventures later, I have arrived in Hawaii to observe with the Keck Telescope.

The only problem is the weather. The picture above is a webcam image taken late this afternoon from NASA's Infrared Telescope Facility looking at the Keck Telescopes (which I am supposed to be using). The bright object is the sun, with the streak being an artifact caused by the glare of the sun overwhelming the camera. But the grey things in the sky are clouds, the bane of the astronomer's existance. Right now, though it is dark, it is foggy and below freezing on the mountain, so ice is forming on everything up on the mountain. Needless to say, we will get nothing done tonight.

So, what happens when the weather gets us? It is our tough luck. We do not get extra telescope time as compensation. Weather is an occupational hazard. So, next year we will ask for more telescope time and try this again!

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