Home' The Chronicle : Canberra Chronicle 21-10-2014 Contents 15 - Tuesday, October 21, 2014
J in us f r s me
You' nv o b S ng
w h J on Ho g A
A ard- inning celebrity gardener Jas n
H dges, p pular h st f TV's Be er
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tips and sh y u h t create
beautiful herb and veggie bas ets -
great f r gifts r y ur itchen.
This very special, free dem nstrati n,
ffers guests the chance t chat in
pers n ith ne f Australia's best-l ved
gardening and landscaping experts, as
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Friday 7th vember 2014
10.30am -- 12.30pm
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Mo n ng
Eye for astronomy bags 1800s telescope
National Museum of Australia senior curator Kirsten Wehner with the valuable 1800s telescope.
Photo: Matt Bedford
Inside our institutions
A personal interest in astronomy led to
the National Museum of Australia s
acquisition of a valuable 19th century
People and the environment head
curator Kirsten Wehner said the
museum received about 30 offers a
fortnight from people wanting to sell
or donate to the museum.
"It s a very complicated process for
what we decide to pursue to the next
stage, which is finding out a little bit
more about it, let alone bringing it into
the collection," she said.
"There s an instinct about what a
great story is and what a great object
is, she added.
It s when you look at the object,
and you think it s actually really
interesting or it s really beautiful or it s
not that beautiful but kind of
The telescope, which the museum
purchased for around $150,000, was
found neatly packed in pieces in the
backyard of a Brisbane home.
"I went to Brisbane with a couple of
other people -- one of our conservators
and someone who we brought in, an
astronomical engineer who knew
about telescopes and who happened to
be my dad," Ms Wehner said.
The telescope was brought to
Canberra and initially stored in a big
freezer room to ensure any bugs or
larvae were killed before it was
"From the beginning I could tell it
was a great object and I could imagine
what it would look like when it had
actually been looked after, Ms
I thought it was really quite rare,
and the opportunity to collect a similar
kind of object that would tell a similar
kind of story about science in
Australia and about people s passion
for astronomy probably wouldn t
come around again, if ever.
"Partly why it took so long to
reassemble was that there was no
blueprint about how to put it back
together, or indeed whether we had all
Black and white photographs were
the only reference the team had to put
the telescope back together.
Kirsten s dad, Hermann, works on a
similar telescope at Mount Stromlo,
and was able to piece the puzzle
together. Since its installation, Mr
Wehner began visiting the telescope
every few months.
The National Museum of Australia
has collected about 210,000 objects,
although less than 5 per cent is on
display at any one time.
builds new base
Hundreds of people across the ACT
and NSW owe their health and
sometimes their lives to the work of
Snowy Hydro SouthCare and their
quick-response aerial medical team.
The Canberra-based service got a
boost with the opening of a new
$1.15 million administration and
training centre at their base in Hume
Chief executive Owen Finegan
said the new facility would house five
administrative staff full time and a
multi-purpose space for training,
meetings and conferences.
He said through federal and state
support and the Master Builders
Association no monetary donation
had been used, allowing money to be
used exclusively for helicopter
In the past year Snowy Hydro
SouthCare has rescued about 500
people, and 5800 since 1998.
ACT SCHOOLS GET
SMART WITH GAS
New gas smart meters have been
installed in ACT public schools to
better equip schools to monitor
energy usage and save money.
The meters will capture the gas
data then display it on an interactive
ACT is the only jurisdiction to
have data loggers for water,
electricity, solar and gas in all public
Data on energy generation for
schools can be viewed online at
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