Saving The World And Searching the Cosmos, Too

While we're certainly not going to criticize the world's richest man for using so many of his billions to try to solve humanity's most pressing health problems, it's nice to see that he's got a little left over for the cosmos, too. Bill Gates donated $10 million —and former Microsoft colleague Charles Simonyi dished out $20 million—to the finance three large mirrors for the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope, a massive observatory being built in Chile.

The $400 million project will help astronomers spot asteroids and supernovae, map galaxies, and find out more about dark energy and dark matter, the invisible stuff that scientists say dominates most of our universe.—Gregory Mone

(Image credit: Kevin Hand / NASA)