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Session 30 - Radio Astronomy, Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow - I.
Oral session, Tuesday, June 11
The story of NRAO begins in late 1953, when scientists at several institutions began informal discussions about how they might acquire a large radio telescope for their mutual use. These discussions led to a feasibility study by AUI and, on Nov. 17, 1956 the first contract between NSF and AUI was signed to build and operate the NRAO. The feasibility study identified Green Bank, West Virginia as the site of the new observatory and a 140ft radio telescope as its main instrument. NRAO grew rapidly during the next 10-12 years, with the construction of additional telescopes, acquistion of new sites, and the beginning of the VLA and VLBI. In this talk, I will describe these developments, the scientific motives that drove them, the climate in which they were conducted, and some of the clashes of strong personalities that simetimes influenced them.
Program listing for Tuesday