The rise and fall of the Chris Cross: a pioneering Australian radio telescope

Orchiston, Wayne (2004) The rise and fall of the Chris Cross: a pioneering Australian radio telescope. In: Orchiston, Wayne, Stephenson, F.Richard, Debarbat, Suzanne, and Il-Seong, NHA, (eds.) Astronomical Instruments and Archives from the Asia-Pacific Region: proceedings of an international conference held in Korea in July 2002. Yonsei University Press, pp. 157-162.

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The Chris Cross was the world's first cross-grating interferometer and the first radio telescope to provide a two-dimensional daily map of the Sun. It was constructed by the CSIRO's Division of Radiophysics at Fleurs, near Sydney, in 1957, and operated at a frequency of 1420 MHz. In 1959, an I8-m parabolic antenna was installed adjacent to the Chris Cross array, fanning the world's first high resolution compound interferometer, and this was used to survey discrete radio sources. During the 19705 the Fleurs Synthesis Telescope (FST) was developed by adding six stand-alone 13.7-m parabolic antennas. When used in conjunction with the Chris Cross, this was one of the most powerful radio telescopes in the world, and it was used for detailed studies of large radio galaxies, supernova remnants and emission nebulae. The FST was closed down in 1988, and antennas in the array continued to rust. Although a number of individual antennas were refurbished in 1991, the very survival of remaining elements of this pioneering radio telescope is in jeopardy. Astronomers need to be convinced that just like historically-important optical telescopes, early radio telescopes that made major contributions to astronomy need to be preserved for posterity.

Item ID: 5011
Item Type: Book Chapter (Research - B1)
ISBN: 89-7141-656-4
Date Deposited: 03 Sep 2009 03:03
FoR Codes: 22 PHILOSOPHY AND RELIGIOUS STUDIES > 2202 History and Philosophy of Specific Fields @ 100%
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