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Talk by Dr. James R. Dire

This talk will start with the invention of the telescope in the late 16th century and cover all of the innovative improvements in telescope designs for astronomical use from the 17th through 21st centuries. The talk will not only concentrate on the innovations, but also on the scientists and engineers responsible for the improvements throughout the centuries.

Dr. James Dire earned bachelors degrees in chemistry, physics and mathematics from the University of Missouri, Kansas City. He went on to earn a MS degree in physics from the University of Central Florida and a MA degree in atmospheric science from The Johns Hopkins University. Subsequently he completed a PhD from Johns Hopkins in planetary astronomy. His dissertation was on the seasonal photochemistry in the atmosphere of Saturn’s moon Titan.

After 23 years in the armed forces, which included duty as a physics and astronomy professor at both the US Naval Academy and the US Coast Guard Academy, Dr. Dire became a college administrator. He served as an associate provost at Gardner-Webb University in Boiling Spring North Carolina and as Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at the University of Hawaii’s campus on Kauai, and Chancellor of Methodist College in Peoria, IL. He currently is the Dean of Physical Sciences at Blinn College in Bryan, Texas.

Dr. Dire is a seasoned astronomical observer and astrophotographer. He has authored a deep space column in the Astronomical League’s Reflector magazine since 2010 and is contributes myriad article to Astronomy Technology Today and Solar Astronomy Today. in Astronomy Technology Today. He is a past president of the Astronomical Society of Kansas City and currently is a member of the Peoria Astronomical Society, the Las Vegas Astronomical Society, and the Kauai Educational Association for Science and Astronomy.