One of the best adventures we had on the Big Island of Hawaii was to book a Mauna Kea sunset tour. The tour took us in four wheel drive vans to the summit to watch the sun set and learn about the observatories, geology, and ecology of Mauna Kea.
We stopped before the sunset at the summit and our tour guides described the various observatories that have been built there. The summit of Mauna Kea is an ideal location for telescopes because it is above the cloud layer, low in atmospheric and light pollution, and the air is dry and thin – all qualities that improve the quality of astronomical.
This picture shows the twin Keck Observatories. The telescopes are unique because they each use multiple, separate hexagonal mirrors that operate as if they were a single contiguous mirror. Furthermore, the two observatories can be used to simultaneously image the same celestial object to produce a higher resolution image than can be achieved with a single telescope.
One of the best adventures we had on the Big Island of Hawaii was to book a Mauna Kea sunset tour. The tour took us in four wheel drive vans to the summit to watch the sun set and learn about the observatories, geology, ecology and spirituality of Mauna Kea.
Mauna Kea is a dormant volcano with its summit is at 13,796 ft above sea level
This picture was taken above the Onizuka Center for International Astronomy Visitor Information Station. You can see it at the bottom right hand corner of this picture. The station is at 9,300 feet above sea level and our tour group stopped there briefly to acclimate to the altitude and look through some solar telescopes. We stopped again at approximately 10,300 feet to take some pictures. Here you can see a number of cinder cones. And yes, those are clouds. Some of the other pictures show even more dramatic views of the cloud layer as seen from above.
We noitced these windmills from the highway and drove down the Upolu Airport road to have a closer look. The scale of these windmills is hard to fathom. The sound made by the blads as they spun in the wind was definately formidable.
The Hawi Wind Farm, has a 10.56 MW capacity, consisting of 16 Vestas V47 (660 kW) wind turbines and interconnection facilities, became operational in May 2006. A purchase power agreement with Hawaii Electric Light Company was approved by the Public Utilities Commission on May 14, 2004.