Pacific Science Center

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PacSci-Doku: “Finally”

By Dennis Schatz – Senior Advisor

Do you Sudoku? It’s one of the hottest number games around! Well, here’s a twist we think you’ll love. We call it PacSci-Doku. Can you guess why? Here’s how it works. Instead of filling in the blanks with numbers, we use letters. Hidden in one of the columns or rows is the answer to a science question. You’ll find information about the answer on the answer tab below.

The question in this edition is:

Who will be the first female astronomer to have a major research telescope named in her honor?

To find the answer, complete this PacSci-Doku using the following nine letters:

U  I  E  A  R  r  N  V  B


PacSci-Doku: Finally The Puzzle

Puzzle Difficulty: Medium

The Answer

PacSci-Doku: Finally The AnswerThe question in this edition is:

Who will be the first female astronomer to have a major research telescope named in her honor?

The answer: Vera Rubin

Many major research telescopes are named in honor of famous astronomers. There is the well-known Hubble Space Telescope, named in honor of Edwin Hubble, who discovered the redshift in galaxies that proved the universe is expanding. The Hale Telescope at the Palomar Observatory is named in honor of George Ellery Hale, who is best known for discovering magnetic fields in sunspots.

Finally, we will now have a telescope named for a woman astronomer, Vera Rubin. The telescope, previously called the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST), is located high in the Andes Mountains of Chile. The telescope will be able record the entire sky visible from that location in just a few days.

It is a well-deserved honor for Vera Rubin, who spent much of her life studying the rotation of galaxies, which led her to discover that more mass exists in galaxies than is visible to our telescopes. This “dark matter” that holds galaxies together is still one of the scientific challenges for astronomer to understand.

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