Sarah Lee Lippincott
|Sarah Lee Lippincott|
October 26, 1920 |
|Residence||Kennett Square, Pennsylvania, United States|
|Institutions||Swarthmore College Sproul Observatory|
|Known for||binary stars|
|Influences||Peter van de Kamp|
Sarah Lee Lippincott (born October 26, 1920) also known as Sarah Lee Lippincott Zimmerman is an American astronomer. She is Professor Emerita of Astronomy at Swarthmore College and Director Emerita of the college's Sproul Observatory.  She is a pioneer in the use of astrometry to determine the character of binary stars and search for extrasolar planets.
After graduation from the University of Pennsylvania Sarah Lippencott attended Swarthmore college where she worked closely with Peter van de Kamp on many astrometry projects between 1945 and his retirement in 1972. She wrote his obituary when he died in 1995. She became observatory director after Peter van de Kamp retired in 1972.
She was the third wife of the late Dave Garroway, the founding host of NBC's Today show. Garroway had an active interest in astronomy and they met on a tour of observatories in the Soviet Union that she was hosting. After Garroway's death by suicide at their home in 1982 she helped establish the Dave Garroway Laboratory for the Study of Depression at the University of Pennsylvania.
She conducted numerous astrometric studies of nearby stars with van de Kamp in the search for extrasolar planets. She reported the discovery of several objects of sub-stellar mass and proposed a 0.01 solar-mass planetary companion to the star Lalande 21185 in 1951. The same proposal of planetary objects was made for a number of other stars as well. Claims for the smaller planetary objects were never confirmed and gradually have become discredited. However, she was quite successful in using the same techniques for characterizing many binary star systems. Her 1951 calculations of the orbit of the difficult astronomical binary star system Ross 614 were used to successfully find and image the system's secondary star. These calculations were used by Walter Baade to find and optically resolve this binary system for the first time using the then new 5 m (200 in) Hale Telescope at the Palomar Observatory in California.
She is listed as Professor Emerita of Astronomy and Director Emerita of the Sproul Observatory in the 2010 Swarthmore college catalog. She last published astronomy research papers in 1983. In 2009 she attended the dedication ceremony for the new Peter van de Kamp observatory at Swarthmore College.
Honors and awards
Lippincott authored two books, with coauthors:
- Philadelphia: The Unexpected City; with Laurence Lafore; Publisher: Doubleday & Co.; 1st edition (January 1, 1965); ASIN: B002LQQJR4
- Point to the Stars - Revised Edition; with Joseph Maron Joseph; Publisher: McGraw-Hill Book Company (1967); ASIN: B002BG231A
Lippincott published over one hundred papers in her career. These are two typical examples:
- A determination of the parallax and mass-ratio of 6 Equulei by van de Kamp, Peter and Lippincott, Sarah Lee, Astronomical Journal, Volume 51, Page 162 (1945)
- An unseen companion to 36 Ursae Majoris A from analysis of plates taken with the Sproul 61-CM refractor by Lippincott, S. L. Astronomical Society of the Pacific, Publications, Volume 95, Pages 775-777 (1983)
- Who's who in Frontier Science and Technology 1. Marquis Who's Who, 1984. 1984. p. 447.
- "Swarthmore College Archives, Astronomy Department Records, 1899-1986". Retrieved 2009-06-03.
- "Swarthmore College Faculty and Other Instructional Staff". Retrieved 2009-01-29.
- Yearbook of the College for Women, 1940, University of Pennsylvania
- Lippincott, Sarah Lee (December 1995). "Obituary: Peter van de Kamp, 1901-1995". Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society 27 (4): 1483–1484. Bibcode:1995BAAS...27.1483L.
- "Garroway, first 'Today' host, is dead". St. Petersburg Times. July 22, 1982. Retrieved 2009-06-03.[dead link]
- Lee Lawrence Papers, University of Maryland Libraries, hdl:1903.1/1488
- van de Kamp, P. & Lippincott, S. L (April 1951). "Astrometric study of Lalande 21185". The Astronomical Journal 56: 49–50. Bibcode:1951AJ.....56...49V. doi:10.1086/106503.
- Lippincott, S. L. (February 1951). "Parallax and orbit analysis of Ross 614". The Astronomical Journal 55: 236–242. Bibcode:1951AJ.....55..236L. doi:10.1086/106471.
- George Gatewood et al. (2003). "An Astrometric Study of the Low-Mass Binary Star Ross 614" (PDF). The Astronomical Journal 125 (3): 1530–1536. Bibcode:2003AJ....125.1530G. doi:10.1086/346143.
- Jeffrey Lott (July 2009). "New Peter van de Kamp Observatory Dedicated". Swarthmore College Bulletin. Retrieved 2009-12-12.
- Kappa Kappa Gamma Alumnae Achievement Award Recipients, 1966, Sarah Lee Lippincott
- "S. I. Lippincott received the honorary D.Sc. degree by Villanova University in Pennsylvania". Mercury 2 (3): 15. 1973. Bibcode:1973Mercu...2R..15.
- "Distinguished Daughters of Pennsylvania" (PDF). Retrieved 2009-06-03.