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Американский любитель астрономии, получивший всемирную известность благодаря открытой им вместе с Т.Боппом яркой комете. Получил астрономическое образование и некоторое время занимался изучением других планетных систем. В период максимальной яркости в апреле 1997 комета ХейлаБоппа достигла нулевой звездной величины.
Alan Hale Autobiography I was raised on the outskirts of Alamogordo, New Mexico, in the southern New Mexico desert, and first developed an interest in astronomy in the First Grade, when my father checked out some astronomy books from the local library for me to read. Although my interests oscillated between various subjects during the subsequent years, by Sixth Grade I had finally "settled" on astronomy, and during that year (early in 1970) I convinced my father to purchase me a small telescope, a 4 1/2 inch reflector. Throughout my years in junior high and high school I extensively used both this telescope and, during my senior year of high school, a 12 1/2 inch reflector owned by the local school district.
While in high school I participated in the science fair program, doing projects on the asteroid Eros during its 1975 approach to the earth, and on Comet West during its appearance in 1976. This latter project netted me a trip to the International Science Fair. Following my high school graduation I attended the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, and graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in Physics in 1980. I was then stationed at various naval bases in southern California, both in San Diego and Long Beach.
With an 8 inch reflector I had purchased as a graduation present to myself, I actively pursued comet observing during this period, and my work eventually came to the attention of some of the comet scientists around the nation, including those of the International Halley Watch, in which I was eventually asked to participate. I got out of the Navy in late 1983, and shortly thereafter began working for the Deep Space Network at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena. I worked at JPL for 2 1/2 years, and was involved in, among other projects, the Voyager 2 encounter with Uranus in early 1986.
Later that year I left JPL and returned to New Mexico to enter graduate school at New Mexico State University in Las Cruces. I successfully earned my Ph.D. in Astronomy in 1992, with a dissertation centering onaspects involved in the search for planetary systems around other stars. It was during this period that I purchased the 16 inch reflector with which I do most of my present visual observing. After getting a first-hand look at the poor job market for scientists in our present-day society, in 1993 I decided to form my own independent research and education organization, the Southwest Institute for Space Research. As Director of the Institute I perform research on various aspects of the search for other planetary systems, work with schools and other organizations in this region to promote astronomy education, and involve myself in activities related to the commercial development of space. I relocated the Institute to the mountain village of Cloudcroft, New Mexico in early 1995 when my family I moved there, and it was from my driveway that I made the discovery of Comet Hale-Bopp a few months later.
ОТКРЫТИЕ КОМЕТЫ, 22.07.1995, ?
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