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Astley Hire Ltd goes Stella

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Astley Hire supplied a Nifty HR15N Height Rider Access machine and operator to UCLan (The University of Central Lancashire) to help install a giant screen so fantastic images of the sun could be projected to the public in great detail.

The Cherry Picker and operator were on site during the whole project to ensure it went smoothly.

For 4 days during May, passers-by were able to see spectacular close-up images of the Sun projected onto one of UCLan’s giant solar trackers; images that are equivalent to ten times the quality of high definition television and which are being continuously beamed to UCLan by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO).
The event showcased a double first for the University: UCLan is the only UK institution to be collaborating closely with NASA and its international partners to investigate, store, manage and ultimately share the images with the European scientific and academic community. UCLan was also the first UK University to install solar trackers during 2009 that rotate and follow the motion of the Sun.

Tripping the light fantastic on this unique event, the Sunbeam Digital Projection Project, was digital artist Chris Meigh-Andrews, Professor of Electronic and Digital Art at UCLan and the University’s Reader in Solar Physics at the Jeremiah Horrocks Institute, Dr Robert Walsh.
Professor Meigh-Andrews commented: “The solar image projection will bring together a number of my interests and concerns as an artist as much of my art work features the harnessing of renewable energy systems - both within the gallery and at outdoor locations.

Michael Dorricott, of Astley Hire, a local independent hire company, was really enthusiastic about the project. Not only did he supply the perfect type of Access equipment for this unusual application, he offered his time as the access equipment operator as well. In such a public space safety was a paramount concern. Astley hire is also IPAF Powered Access Training centre and their personnel are amongst the most highly qualified professionals in the country. Normally the Access equipment is supplied without an operator however they made a very welcome exception to support this fascinating event.


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