|Hoover Dam - Many people mistakenly believe that the Hoover Dam was built primarily as a power generator station. However, power generation was third on the priority list of reasons to build the Dam when the idea was conceived in the 1920s. The primary reasons were flood control and water conservation. The first power generators were not installed until 1939, four years after the Dam was completed. As demand for electricity grew, more generators were installed. Today there are 17 generators that supply 2,080 megawatts of electricity for use throughout California, Nevada and Arizona. Touring this magnificent operation was both fascinating and enlightening.
|Grand Canyon - To say that the Grand
Canyon is big is a gross understatement. In fact, I
have yet to find a word in the English language to accurately describe
the grandeur and beauty of this natural wonder. Geologists believe that
the canyon was formed gradually by wind and water erosion. That erosion continues today as the
mighty Colorado River meanders through the canyon bottom and wind
creates subtle changes along the canyon walls.The canyon is one mile
deep (1.6 km) and up to 18 miles (29 km) across at some points. For more
than a million years, the Grand Canyon has been ever-changing. The
human eye is challenged to capture its immensity and photographs portray
some of its beauty only at a moment in time.
| Lowell Observatory - More than 100 years ago, Percival Lowell predicted that the universe extended beyond Neptune, the outermost planet identified up to that time. Lowell, an American mathematician and astronomer, worked tirelessly peering through a telescope in the unheated building on Flagstaff, Arizona's Mars Hill to prove the existence of Planet X. Fourteen years after his death, Clyde Tombaugh used the Pluto Discovery Telescope to verify Lowell's calculations about the ninth planet (since downgraded to dwarf planet status because it is so small). Inspired by Lowell's dedication to astronomical research, the Lowell Observatory staff carry on the founder's commitment to discovery in all areas of astronomy and planetary science.