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From the Director

NASA astronaut Ed Lu and Institute for Astronomy Director Rolf-Peter Kudritzki met with Gov. Linda Lingle at her office during Lu's recent visit to Hawaii. Photo by Bob Chinn, University Relations.

Dear Friends of Hawaii Astronomy,

It is sometimes fascinating to witness the excitement and inspiration science can generate. The recent visit by astronaut Dr. Ed Lu is a beautiful example. Ed worked at the IfA as an astronomer before he became one of the most experienced and most respected astronauts within NASA's space program. He is still closely connected to Hawaii, has many friends here, and calls Hawaii his second home.

When he gave an IfA-organized public lecture on the Manoa campus in early February, the auditorium was packed. Ed had just returned from 184 days on the International Space Station and was the first U.S. astronaut to fly to the space station on the Russian spacecraft Soyuz. The audience was treated to an outstanding talk about life in space and the goals of modern space science. I was deeply impressed when many children lined up after the presentation to talk to Ed and to ask him hundreds of questions. They did not want to let him go and were anxious to learn everything. There are moments in your life when you know that you, as a scientist, have done the right thing, and this was one of them.

And, by the way, the children were not only ones deeply interested. The governor of the State of Hawaii, the Honorable Linda Lingle, spent an hour that morning talking with Ed and me about science, and she took time out of her busy schedule to come to Ed's public lecture and to introduce him. As I looked at her while Ed showed his marvelous pictures from space, including the many detailed views of the Hawaiian Islands, I learned again what the inspiration of science can do.


Rolf-Peter Kudritzki

Director, Institute for Astronomy

Survey Results

Interested in the results of the survey distributed with the paper edition of our summer 2003 newsletter? See



UH Astrobiology Team Studies Water and Life in the Universe
ULBCam: The World's Largest Infrared Camera
Life on the Space Station

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