Atacamahenge

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Whitemane
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Atacamahenge

Postby Whitemane » 20 Jun 2014, 12:32

They're starting building of the new European oh-my-god(dess)-what-a-whopper telescope in the Atacama desert in Chile. It's a fabulous place do so as far as the astronomers are concerned with a thin clear, stable, atmosphere. Everybody seems to have a massive telescope up there, along with a bunch of astronomers mainlining antidepressants.

First of all, they're taking the top off a mountain, then constructing a massive building to an extremely high civil engineering standard, with some construction being taken to millimetric precision.

I'm reading Ronald Hutton's "Pagan Britain" (damned good read), so now I'm wondering what people are going to be thinking when they discover discover the remnants of these splendid machines after a few civilizations have risen and fallen.

"Why would a primitive people build such massive edifices in such a remote locations?" :henge:

Any other thoughts?
May the long time sun shine upon you,
All love surround you,
And the pure light within you,
Guide your way on.

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Mountain Lily
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Re: Atacamahenge

Postby Mountain Lily » 28 Jun 2014, 07:25

I spent 6 months in Chuquicamata. The Atacama is definitely a terrific place to put a telescope installation. Sorry to hear about the mountaintop, though. :-( I wish we didn't feel we need to destroy so much when we "build" things.

I can imagine they'll have to work hard to stabilize their 'scopes, since there are earthquakes there. Mostly small ones, but still that has the potential to ruin months of work when it happens.

I fell in love with the desert there. I learned a lot of important lessons in the Atacama.
SB2014
The true harvest of my daily life is somewhat as intangible and indescribable as the tints of morning or evening. It is a little star-dust caught, a segment of the rainbow which I have clutched. --Thoreau

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Whitemane
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Re: Atacamahenge

Postby Whitemane » 28 Jun 2014, 12:06

I've only ever seen documentaries of the Atacama, but it does seem to be a place that will challenge you.
May the long time sun shine upon you,
All love surround you,
And the pure light within you,
Guide your way on.

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Mountain Lily
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Re: Atacamahenge

Postby Mountain Lily » 28 Jun 2014, 17:47

Yep. Also, too: that was the only apartment I ever had that had a bidet :-). North Americans don't know what they're missing!

It rained for about 30 seconds the entire time I was there. I think that day everyone (including me) dropped what we were doing and ran outside to see the rare magic of water falling right out of the sky. :huh:
SB2014
The true harvest of my daily life is somewhat as intangible and indescribable as the tints of morning or evening. It is a little star-dust caught, a segment of the rainbow which I have clutched. --Thoreau


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