The Journey to Palomar

The Journey to Palomar

Thu, 02/23/2012 - 7:30pm

Pictured: George Ellery Hale.

Credit: Courtesy of The Huntington Library, Art Collections & Botanical Gardens

Before we went to the Moon, George Ellery Hale took us to the stars.  This is the story of America’s first journey into space.

THE JOURNEY TO PALOMAR, airing Thursday, February 23 at 7:30 p.m. on WXXI World (cable 524/DT21.2), is the story of American astronomer George Ellery Hale's dramatic public and private struggle to build the four largest telescopes in the world, which set the stage for astronomy and space exploration throughout the 20th century, revealing the greatest discoveries since Galileo and Copernicus.

More than five years in the making, the documentary traces Hale's lifelong struggle to build these great instruments, culminating with the million-pound telescope on Palomar mountain - the most famous telescope in the world. The combination of Hale's dramatic personal story set against the backdrop of American history and humankind's reach into the far corners of the universe creates a film with appeal to viewers of all ages.