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Grahams Boost Dark Energy Studies

Grahams Boost Dark Energy Studies
Gift from Bob and Annie Graham will help astronomers solve the mystery of dark energy.
Artist's concept of the upgraded Hobby-Eberly Telescope. The VIRUS spectrographs are contained in the curved gray "sadddlebags" on the side of the telescope. Rendering courtesy McDonald Observatory.
Hobby Eberly telescope with VIRUS

Astronomers worldwide are racing to solve the mystery of “dark energy,” and Texas astronomers at the McDonald Observatory and their collaborators from Penn State and Germany are one of the leading teams in this quest.

The group and their project, the Hobby-Eberly Telescope Dark Energy Experiment (HETDEX), just received a huge boost from Bob and Annie Graham through a $1.15 million gift.

The Grahams’ gift will allow the astronomers to purchase some of the optics needed for the VIRUS spectrograph, an important innovation that will give HETDEX researchers the ability to map galaxies as never before and create an enormous three-dimensional map of the universe.

Bob Graham (B.S. ‘68, M.S. ‘72 and M.B.A. ’73) co-founded AIM Management Group Inc., one of the nation’s largest mutual fund companies, and served as the chairman of the company. Recently retired, he was also a member of the executive management committee and was vice chairman of AMVESCAP, of which AIM is a subsidiary. He served on the university’s Commission of 125.
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