The last man-led mission to the moon was in 1972. It’s no wonder, then, that the limited amount of lunar dust brought back to Earth by the six Apollo missions is kept under tight restrictions by the United States government and experimented on by very few scientists.
A really neat story out of The Maui News tells of two NASA-contracted scientists working out of Lehigh University, Carol and Christopher Kiely, who were finding that their research on solar system evolution was being hindered due to the limited technology available for producing highly magnified pictures of the lunar dust they had been loaned. Surprisingly, until now up-close (300 to 600x) lunar dust images were only in the form of two-dimensional black and white pictures. Long story short, a serendipitous experience in a book shop led the Kiely’s to discover Dr. Gary Greenberg, the inventor of a high-definition, three-dimensional light microscope, and the Kiely’s traveled to Hawaii to work with him on taking detailed photographs of the samples to further their research. Okay, that was an inexcusably short version of the story without much drama…do check out the full article if you have time!
Luckily, some of the beautiful images created out of this collaboration will be available as art prints on Dr. Greenberg’s website.
As you might guess from this post and from last month’s post on CT scanner art, I think the joining of science and art is such a cool frontier in fine art production and such an interesting theme for collectors– the field continues to expand as technological innovation (and creative will) advances.