For once that headline is not about some astro-political hullabaloo, as today Siding Spring Observatory, Australia’s largest optical observatory, lay in the path of a fearsome bushfire. Australian bushfires bring back bad memories for Australian astronomers, as exactly 10 years ago this week another one of their observatories, at Mt Stromlo, was severely damaged in a similar fire. So it’s been an anxious day for the Australian community, and for all of us worldwide who were stuck helplessly reading blogs and tweets from those in the country.
Fortunately, it seems like all the staff were safely evacuated and the telescopes are ok – though, as I understand it, damage assessment is still under way.
Stay safe, Ozzies!