Science: Ghosts

When an amateur astronomer, sitting in his cornfield observatory and sweeping the skies with his little telescope, discovers a comet or a nova (exploding star), he telegraphs his find to Harvard Observatory, which checks it if possible and then notifies the big Western Hemisphere observatories. Professional astronomers do the same, but, concentrating on fixed research programs, they are less likely to make lucky discoveries than the sky-roving freelancers. Harvard not only notifies Western Hemisphere astronomical centres of new finds, but cables to Copenhagen, which performs the same service for observatories in...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!