Haro Barraza, Guillermo (1913–1988)

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Haro Barraza, Guillermo (1913–1988)

Guillermo Haro Barraza (b. 21 March 1913; d. 23 April 1988), Mexican astronomer and physicist. Born in Mexico City, the son of José Haro and Leonor Barraza, Haro graduated from the National University and did postgraduate work at the Harvard University Observatory (1943–1944). A full-time researcher at the National University, he initiated an extensive fellowship program to train future Mexican scientists. He directed the National Astronomical Observatory for two decades (1948–1968) as well as the Tonantzintla Astrophysics Observatory. Among them were the detection of a large number of planetary nebulae in the direction of the galactic center and the discovery (also independently done by George Herbig) of the nonstellar condensations in high density clouds near regions of recent star formation (now called Herbig-Haro objects). Haro and coworkers discovered flare stars in the Orion nebula region, and later on in stellar aggregates of different ages. His intense activity detecting flare stars continued until the end of his life.

Other major research projects carried out by Haro included the list of 8746 blue stars in the direction of the north galactic pole published jointly with W. J. Luyten in 1961. Work made with the 48-inch Palomar Schmidt using the three-color image technique developed at Tonantzintla. At least 50 of these objects turned out to be quasars (which had not yet been discovered in 1961). Haro's list of 44 blue galaxies, compiled in 1956, was a precursor to the work of Markarian and others in searching for such galaxies. Haro also discovered a number of T Tauri stars, one supernova, more than 10 novae, and one comet.

With Samuel Ramos and Elí de Gortari, he cofounded the Seminar of Scientific and Philosophical Problems, which published dozens of works. His own work has appeared in English, and he has edited several scientific journals. He became a member of the National College in 1953, and Mexico awarded him its National Prize in Sciences (1963) and the Lomonosow prize for pedagogical achievement (1987).

See alsoAstronomy; Ramos y Magaña, Samuel; Science.


Enciclopedia de México, vol. 6 (1977), p. 365.

Additional Bibliography

Cantó, Jorge, and Eugenio E. Mendoza. Proceedings of the Symposium on Herbig-Haro Objects, T Tauri Stars and Related Phenomena, to Honor Guillermo Haro. Mexico City: Instituto de Astronomía, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, 1983.

Haro, Guillermo. "Obituary." Sky and Telescope 60 (1980): 11.

Haro, Guillermo. "The Possible Connexion between T Tauri Stars and UV Ceti Stars." Symposium 3 (1955): 26.

Mújica, Raúl, and Roberto Maiolino, eds. Multiwavelength Agn Surveys: Proceedings of the Guillermo Haro Conference 2003, Cozumel, Mexico 8-12 December 2003. Hackensack, NJ: World Scientific, 2003.

                                     Roderic Ai Camp