Other Personal Interests

 

Astronomy & Astrophysics

Kelvin has always had a fascination for the stars and have been an amateur astronomer in some form. As well as having a Master's Degree in Astrophysics, he owns three telescopes. The first is a Vixen Sirius refractor which he purchased when he was 18 years old; 800 mm focal length, 40 mm (1.6 inch) aperture, 20 mm (*40) and 8 mm (*100) eyepieces. The next telescope is a Dobsonian reflector; 1000 mm focal length, 152.4 mm (6 inch) primary mirror, 18 mm (*56) and 0.9 mm (*111) eyepieces. The pride and joy is the Celestron 925 CPC, Catadioptric Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope. It has internal GPS and CPC as well as sky alignment. The database allows for up to 40,000 sky objects. Aperture 245 mm (9.25 inch). The resolution of this telescope goes down to 0.1406 arc seconds. The main eyepiece is 40 mm (1.57 inch) but the highest magnification you can get with this equipment is about *555. My CPC is connected to a laptop and NexImage camera and can be positioned within a Kendrick Observatory tent when attending star parties. He also owns several moon and planetary filters, a Barlow lens and a spectrometer for doing spectroscopy work in the future – a long term ambition.

Travelling

Kelvin has visited many places over the years in a personal capacity or for work. This includes:

  • Austria (Vienna).
  • Belgium (Bruges, Brussels).
  • Bulgaria (Sofia, Vratsa).
  • Canada (Toronto, Petawawa).
  • Canary Islands (Gran Canaria, La Palma, Lanzarote).
  • Croatia (Dubrovnik).
  • Czeck Republic (Prague).
  • Egypt (Cairo, Sinai).
  • France (Paris, Le Havre, Metz, Monaco, Cannes, Strasbourg, St Vaas).
  • Germany (Frankfurt).
  • Greece (Corfu).
  • Hungary (Budapest).
  • Ireland (Dublin & Cork).
  • Italy (Florence, Pisa, Rome, Venice, Verona).
  • Netherlands (Arnhem).
  • Northern Ireland (Belfast).
  • Norway (Bergen, Briksdalen, Nordkapp, Oldenburg, Trondheim, Tromso).
  • Portugal (Lisbon, Porto, Vigo).
  • Spain (Alicante, Barcelona, Malaga).
  • United Kingdom (England, Scotland, Wales).
  • United Kingdom territories (Gibraltar, Jersey).
  • United States (Atlanta, Dallas, New York, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Houston, Huntsville, Los Alamos, Los Angeles, Maryland, Montgomery, Oakland, Ohio, Orlando, Palo Alto, Pasadena, Pleasanton, Washington D.C, Tennessee, Yosemite).

Animal Rights & Conservation

Kelvin is interested in the rights of animals and that we deal with them ethically as we seek to establish a harmonious existence on this planet. In particular, as a young man he was struck by a quote from the physicist Albert Einstein as follows: "A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty". Hence, he advocates for compassion towards animals.

 

In 2010 a group of compassionate humans came together to discuss the rights of Cetaceans. They constructed the text below which profoundly illustrates the capacity for kindness towards all life by the human race. How we treat other animals on this earth may be an indication for how we would treat a well meaning visiting extraterestrial species.

Declaration of Rights for Cetaceans: Whales and Dolphins

Based on the principle of the equal treatment of all persons; Recognizing that scientific research gives us deeper insights into the complexities of cetacean minds, societies and cultures; Noting that the progressive development of international law manifests an entitlement to life by cetaceans; We affirm that all cetaceans as persons have the right to life, liberty and wellbeing. We conclude that:

  • Every individual cetacean has the right to life.
  • No cetacean should be held in captivity or servitude; be subject to cruel treatment; or be removed from their natural environment.
  • All cetaceans have the right to freedom of movement and residence within their natural environment.
  • No cetacean is the property of any State, corporation, human group or individual.
  • Cetaceans have the right to the protection of their natural environment.
  • Cetaceans have the right not to be subject to the disruption of their cultures.
  • The rights, freedoms and norms set forth in this Declaration should be protected under international and domestic law.
  • Cetaceans are entitled to an international order in which these rights, freedoms and norms can be fully realized.
  • No State, corporation, human group or individual should engage in any activity that undermines these rights, freedoms and norms.
  • Nothing in this Declaration shall prevent a State from enacting stricter provisions for the protection of cetacean rights.

Agreed, 22nd May 2010, Helsinki, Finland

You can sign the declaration here:

http://cetaceanconservation.com.au/cetaceanrights/