View from Mauna Kea

Ellen Cotton

Fremont, CA, United States

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Artist's Description

Taken on the steep climb up Mauna Kea on the BIg Island of Hawaii (about 13,000 feet above sea level). The volcano in the background is Mauna Loa, which is an active volcano. I’ve never been at this high an altitude before – the air is thin and I felt dizzy looking down! There is even snow at the top sometimes!

Featured in Hawai’i – Aloha Na’au – Oct.2009

“Mauna Kea (”White Mountain") is a dormant volcano on the island of Hawaii, the largest and southernmost of the Hawaiian Islands. It is located about 300 km (190 miles) from Honolulu, which lies on the island of Oahu. The highest point in the Pacific Basin, and the highest island-mountain in the world, Mauna Kea rises 9,750 meters (32,000 ft) from the ocean floor to an altitude of 4,205 meters (13,796 ft) above sea level, which places its summit above 40 percent of the Earth’s atmosphere.

There are currently thirteen working telescopes near the summit of Mauna Kea. Nine of them are for optical and infrared astronomy, three of them are for submillimeter wavelength astronomy and one is for radio astronomy. They include the largest optical/infrared telescopes in the world (the Keck telescopes), the largestdedicated infrared telescope (UKIRT) and the largest submillimeter telescope in the world (the JCMT). The westernmost antenna of the Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) is situated at a lower altitude two miles from the summit. "

Excerpt from the Institute For Astronomy website: Here:

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