Astronomy/re past questions


Hi Tom, on reviewing some of your past answers (because of an interest in science) I cant help think you should answer questions in politics. You are probably correct that England hasnt done a lot in space. Mainly because we didnt capture a load of Nazis to do all our mental work for us on a giant ego trip against the a war, I might add that if ever there was one, was a just one. As a Vet in a country that I regard as mainly good (but not perfect, alas not many countries are) I have deep respect for you. As a 47yr old father I teach my 16yr old daughter respect too for people who have served their country. I should think many of your generation feel this isnt the case. I enjoy this site and have written to you and other experts and it would be nice to be able to read your knowledgable answers without, shall we say political issues. Thanks.

Hi Richard,
Thanks for your comments and suggestions... and if my answers offended anyone, I deeply apologize. I was stationed for a while in Upper Heyford RAF AFB, England and have the highest regard for the English people, especially enjoying their "pubs". (I was in a mid-air refueling capacity at the time circa 1970). In fact, Sir Issac Newton, along with Galileo, are personal heroes of mine. I've even visited Newton's burial spot in Westminster Abby.

However, I wasn't attempting to be political, but rather simply quoting "politically incorrect"... historical truths. Unfortunately, that question just happened to come in on December 7... and we ALL know what happened at Pearl Harbor on that date in 1941, while the Japanese were holding "peace talks" with President Roosevelt that same day.
The younger generations may not remember their history, and that date, but I do.
Clear Skies,


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Tom Whiting


Astronomy has been my hobby/pasttime for over 50 years.  Currently own 3 telescopes, the largest of which is a 30 inch Newtonian truss Dob that is portable.I taught Astronomy/Meteorology at the University Level for 13 years before retiring in 1995. Being retired and home most of the time, I am able to answer all questions relatively quickly, unless it's a new moon weekend with good observing conditions.  No astrology questions please, or questions about alleged UFO picture identifications.


Experience: Astronomy has been my hobby and study for over 50 years. We currently now own a 30 inch portable telescope (Updated - Pennsylvania`s largest portable telescope). It can be seen on our website at: and also attend several regional starparties during the year, and have been on 5 total solar eclipse expeditions.

Organizations: President, Erie County Mobile Observers Group for over 15 years.

Publications: Wrote the "Over Erie Skies" newspaper article in our local newspaper for 11 years (1975-86).

Education: Masters Degree- Taught at the University level for 13 years. Retired 20 years -USAF Pilot - KC-135 with 180 combat missions;  Also Eagle Scout, Philmont staff 2 Yrs, Order of Arrow Lodge Chief, Ham Radio (inactive).

Awards: two discoveries: The mini-coathanger asterism in Ursa Minor (the little dipper) And the mini-ladle- another asterism in the bowl of Ursa Minor. Clients: Currently President of the ECMOG as mentioned above.

BS  Metallurgical Engineering Grove City College, PAMaster's Degree, Gannon University, Erie, PA Also retired USAF pilot, 20 years.

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