Honorable Mentions


ENTRY: ANNIE CANNON X-RAY OBSERVATORY
NAME: Vickie Frohne

It is difficult to find a pioneer in x-ray astronomy (contest question #1) after whom to name AXAF, because most of them are still living. Since most of the data used by astronomers consists of spectra, and since one of the main missions of the AXAF is to obtain x-ray spectra from stars and other x-ray sources, I propose that this facility be named after a principal pioneer in the field of astronomical spectroscopy. Annie Cannon was perhaps the most famous of the female "calculators" hired to work at the Harvard Observatory during the 1880's. Although they were hired as cheap labor, the "Harvard Women" revolutionized astronomy. These ladies were the first scientists to analyze the massive amount of spectroscopic data made available by the new technology of photography. Annie Cannon refined and honed the stellar classification system started by Williamina Fleming and Antonia Maury to that which we use today. At a time when she was not allowed to formally study astronomy, at a university which would no t admit women students for decades, Annie Cannon became the most illustrious of a group of world-class astronomers. This is an incredible achievement. Annie Cannon is fully worthy of the honor of having AXAF named for her.

Return to Runners-up


ENTRY: CANNON
NAME: Paul Adams

I believe that naming the telescope after Annie Jump Cannon (1863-1941) is appropriate in recognition of her vital work in classifying stars in the visible spectrum. Her spectral classification provided a systematic way of classifying stars that revolutionized the physical understanding of stellar observations. Naming the telescope after Cannon honors her efforts in visible spectrum of modern astronomy and serves as a bridge, or jump point, into that part of the spectrum unavailable to Cannon. Thus the name Cannon once again becomes associated making sense of the universe.

Return to Runners-up



[ Contest Home ] [ Runners-Up ] [ Co-Winners ]


Revised: