The lighter side of science

NCAR cartoonists find humor in research

The late NCAR associate director and HAO director Gordon Newkirk added his own caption to this depiction of Snoopy in 1964, two years after the book Happiness is a Warm Puppy. Gordon came to HAO in 1955 (before UCAR/NCAR was founded) to work on the development of a coronagraph for studying scattered light from the electron corona. The comic refers to the Coronascope II (see photo), a balloon-borne solar telescope used to test concepts that are now used in satellite solar astronomy.

Snoopy saying that "Happiness is coronal streamers to five radii on the first try!"


Black and white photo of Gordon Newkirk with Coronascope II.Gordon with the Coronascope II.



Senior scientist emerita Peggy LeMone (NESL/MMM) has made a hobby of penning cartoons that reflect the trials, tribulations, and successes of the many field projects she’s participated in at NCAR since the early 1970s. Here is one that she drew in response to spending a year wading through data from research flights to identify bad data. The cat is sitting on the microfilm reader used to read the data. “I think those data are still somewhere in a box,” Peggy says. “They’re also on the Mass Storage System, so we could probably find better ways of looking at them these days. Ahhh, progress!”