Posts Tagged ‘Astronomy’
Four Jesuits in history have had asteroids named after them. Jesuit Father George Coyne, director emeritus of the Vatican Observatory and president of the Vatican Observatory Foundation and Brother Guy Consolmagno, curator of meteorites at the Vatican Observatory, are the two living astronomers with that distinction. They shared their observations of life, faith, friendship and the universe from their seats in the Vatican Observatory with Krista Trippet, host of the Speaking of Faith radio program on American Public Media during a recent show. Go here to download the interview or to listen to the interview directly.
Jesuit Brother Guy Consolmagno was interviewed by Canadian magazine The Walrus about his work at the Vatican Observatory Research Group, the second research center of the Vatican Observatory based in Tucson, Ariz. Read an excerpt below:
Installed on the second floor of a small building on the summit of Arizona’s Mount Graham, Guy Consolmagno is multi-tasking. He’s checking email on his laptop and listening to the Penguin Cafe Orchestra on his iPod, all the while keeping an eye on a bank of computer monitors. One floor up, nestled in a silvery-white dome, a telescope is trained on a potato-shaped chunk of rock and ice known as Haumea, which orbits the sun some six billion kilometres from Earth. Thin clouds have been drifting overhead since sundown, but if they dissipate, the telescope’s digital camera will record changes in Haumea’s brightness as it tumbles through the outer reaches of the solar system, offering Consolmagno and fellow astronomers hints about the structure and evolution of our planetary family.
All this is typical fare for a scientist. What is perhaps surprising is that Consolmagno is also a Jesuit brother, that many of his colleagues are ordained priests, and that they’re scanning the heavens with the Vatican Advanced Technology Telescope or, more affectionately, the “Pope scope.”
For more about Jesuit Brother Consolmagno’s worked with the Vatican Observatory, go here.