The Effelsberg 100-m dish represents a major breakthrough in the technology of radio telescope construction. Using new methods of computation a big step in the direction of improved surface accuracy for large structures was achieved. In conjunction with the decision to build the 100-m radio telescope the Max-Planck-Gesellschaft (MPG) founded the Max-Planck-Institute for Radio Astronomy (MPIfR) in Bonn. The MPIfR grew out of the Bonn University Astronomy Department to become one of the leading institutes for radio astronomy in the world. This new institute received strong support from the MPG in the form of new positions and operating funds. As a result, the 100-m radio telescope could be quickly opened up for astronomical observations. The technical divisions provided state-of-the-art receivers and astronomical software. Teams of astronomical researchers made inroads in several important directions of astronomical research. Over the years virtually all the observing methods of radio astronomy were implemented at Effelsberg. In later years the MPIfR became involved in mm, sub-mm and infrared astronomy research. However, the 100-m radio telescope remained the `work horse' of the Institute. The Effelsberg Radio Telescope will celebrate its 40th anniversary of operations in May 2011 and is still going strong. The observations with the 100-m radio telescope have resulted in thousands of publications. It has served several generations of radio astronomers and has given hundreds of students the opportunity to complete doctoral degrees. The 100-m radio telescope has been upgraded continuously, is in excellent condition and can look to a further period as an important research instrument.
Journal of Astronomical History and Heritage
- Pub Date:
- March 2011
- Effelsberg 100-m Radio Telescope;
- Max-Planck-Institut für Radioastronomie;
- radio astronomy;
- observational results