The Thrill of the Hunt

  • Bruce Dorminey


We were sitting at the control console of a brand new $2.5-million telescope, staring at a list of seemingly inauspicious stars. Atop a barren mountain at the southernmost tip of Chile’s Atacama desert, there were just the three of us: Michel Burnet, a Geneva Observatory electronic engineer, Hernán Julio, an ESO press liaison, and I, and if we had all collapsed and died in mid-sentence it’s certain no one would have come knocking. But isolated as it is, the site is a shrine to technology and the Internet. One of a string of PCs that lined the room was permanently tuned to an observatory weather station, which confirmed what we already knew: it was cloudy, cold, and deadly quiet.


Radial Velocity Parent Star Doppler Spectroscopy Short Orbit Barren Mountain 
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  1. 1.
    Burnet, Michel, electronic engineer, Geneva Observatory. Interviewed on July 12, 1999, at La Silla, Chile.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Marcy, Geoffrey, astronomer, University of California at Berkeley. Interviewed on May 25, 1999, at Dana Point, California, and on August 6, 1999, at Hapuna Beach, Hawaii. Follow-ups took place on September 8, 2000, May 10–12, 2001, and June 3, 2001.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Kürster, Martin, astronomer, ESO La Silla, Chile. Interviewed on August 5, 1999, at Bioastronomy 99, Hawaii.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Bouchy, François, astrophysicist, Conseil National de Recherches Scientifiques (CNRS). Interviewed on May 6, 1999, at Observatoire de Haute-Provence, France.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bruce Dorminey
    • 1
  1. 1.ParisFrance

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