Rolf Meier

An active Ottawa Centre member and visual discoverer of four comets. He received the Chant Medal in 1979.


ROLF MEIER (1953-2016) grew up in Ottawa and received his Bachelor of Engineering degree in Electronics from Carleton University in 1977. Even at age 25, when he was nominated for the Chant medal, he had been a skillful telescope maker and observer for a long time. On nearly every clear night he could be found at Ottawa Centre's Indian River Observatory, coming early and staying late. His astrophotos were greatly admired by all who saw them but his discovery of a comet on April 26, 1978, really made headlines as it was the first telescopic discovery of a comet from a Canadian location. He discovered further cornets in 1979, '80, and with the discovery of his fourth comet in '84, he became North America's greatest living comet hunter, a distinction he held until surpassed by David Levy in 1989.

In 1984, he married Linda McCrae, herself an outstanding Ottawa member. That year she won three Centre awards - for variable star observations, for the best article in Astronotes and as Observer of the Year. She has since served the Centre as Treasurer. Rolf has held a number of Centre Offices, including Chairman of the Observers' Group, Editor of Astronotes (for 12 years), National Council Rep and President. His 25 cm Newtonian reflector was installed at the Indian River Observatory in 1983 for use of members. A number of articles, displaying his wide-ranging interests, have included "Identifying a Meteorite", "Recent Aurora Activity", and "Solid State Photometer."

Peter Broughton (from Looking Up)

Description: 
Meier, Rolf
Type: 
Person