[2014-Dec-20] Stellafane is saddened by the loss of Harry Vandermeer, a life long optical professional. Several club members worked with or for Harry during his long career in the optical industry.
In 1990, he arranged for the donation of high quality optical glass to the Springfield Telescope Makers for the making of the largest Schupmann Telescope in the Western Hemisphere. It's unique optical properties allow very high contrast images of the Moon, stars, and planets. Members also use the telescope to do research on the orbits of double stars. Several of his employees have been members of the Amateur Telescope Makers of Boston, which meets at Harvard Observatory.
He worked at Diffraction Limited, Inc managing optical programs related to Aerial Reconnaissance. He helped develop Hycon lenses for the SR-71 Blackbird and Laser Altimeters that were flown on Apollo 15, 16, and 17 lunar missions.
Harry worked as an optical physicist for most of his career and formed Optical Systems & Technology, Inc.,at Bedford, MA in 1972. His company specialized in the design and fabrication of large precision telescope systems for NASA and several other government agencies, including the US Navy for submarine optics. Many systems have been flown aboard the Space Shuttle and an ultraviolet spectrometer is approaching the minor planet, Pluto, aboard the New Horizons spacecraft. Arrival is expected in the summer of 2015.
[2015-May-16] Our president found the ridge board from Porter Turret Telescope blown off on his first visit to the site in 2015, and he scheduled a roof replacement work day after noticing the shingles were rather 'crispy'.
The old shingles were stripped, the old tar impregnated roll roofing underneath was in very good condition and left on. The south side eve boards were getting punky, and they were replaced. White aluminum drip edge was added, as well as new 15 pound tar paper. Premium red cedar shakes were installed on the west side.
Those activities filled the day, and the east side shakes, red cedar ridge boards and painting will be finished up in early June.
Participating in this project were President Dave Tabor and Julie Tabor, Past President Jeff Lowe, Matt Considine, Steven Forbes, VP Ken Slater, Tatyana, Olga and Zhenya Malikowski.