The planet Saturn, 1948.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Copy of a photograph taken at the Hale Observatory, United States. The Hale Observatory on Mount Palomar, California, was the culmination of the American astronomer George Ellery Hale's (1868-1938) ambition to build observatories housing large telescopes. Hale had previously been involved in the construction of the Yerkes Observatory at the University of Chicago (which housed the largest refracting telescope ever built) and the Mount Wilson Solar Observatory in California, which housed the Hooker 100-inch reflector, the largest telescope on Earth from 1917 until 1948. The Mount Palomar observatory was an even more ambitious project, with a masive 200-inch reflector, which was finished in 1948, and named after Hale, who died before its completion.