An Illustrated History of Australian Radio Astronomy: The Early Years of the Radiophysics Lab available in Hardcover
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- Springer International Publishing
Australia has a proud history of achievements in radio astronomy, and through the CSIRO Division of Radiophysics (and later the Australia Telescope National Facility) has been a world leader in radio astronomy since the end of World War II. This book covers the years from 1945 until 1961, when radio astronomy developed at a number of sites in New South Wales. Many amazing new discoveries were made by an outstanding group of young scientists, opening up the new science of radio astronomy "from the solar system to the cosmos."
About the Author
Dr Wayne Orchiston is an Adjunct Professor in the Astrophysics Group at the University of Southern Queensland (USQ) in Toowoomba, Australia. Previously, he worked in academic and government astronomy posts in Australia, New Zealand and Thailand. Wayne has a special interest in the history of astronomy, and through the University of Western Sydney, James Cook University (Townsville, Australia) and USQ has supervised the research of more than 30 Ph.D. and Masters theses. He has published papers about early radio astronomy (in Australia, France, India, Japan, New Zealand and the USA); the history of asteroidal, cometary and meteor astronomy; the history of meteoritics; historic transits of Venus; solar eclipses and the development of solar physics; early developments in astrophysics; historic telescopes and observatories; early astronomical societies; amateur-professional relations in astronomy; and ethnoastronomy. His recent books include Eclipses, Transits and Comets of the Nineteenth Century: How America’s Perception of the Sky Changed (Springer, 2015, co-authored by Stella Cottam), Exploring the History of New Zealand Astronomy: Trials, Tribulations, Telescopes and Transits (Springer, 2016), John Tebbutt: Rebuilding and Strengthening the Foundations of Australian Astronomy (Springer, 2017) and The Emergence of Astrophysics in Asia: Opening a New Window on the Universe (Springer, 2017, co-edited by Tsuko Nakamura). Currently Wayne is the Vice-President of IAU Commission C3 (History of Astronomy), and in 2000 and 2003 he founded IAU Working Group on Transits of Venus and Historic Radio Astronomy, respectively. In 1998 he and John Perdrix launched the Journal of Astronomical History and Heritage, and he is the current Editor. Wayne also is the Editor of Springer’s Historical & Cultural Astronomy Series. In 2013, the IAU named minor planet 48471 Orchiston after him.
Dr Peter Robertson is an honorary research fellow in the School of Physics, University of Melbourne. He spent most of his career as managing editor of the Australian Journal of Physics, published by CSIRO Australia and the Australian Academy of Science. His first contribution to the history of astronomy was the book Beyond Southern Skies – Radio Astronomy and the Parkes Telescope (Cambridge University Press, 1992). Since his retirement, Peter has had more time to pursue his interest in the history of astronomy. He recently completed a PhD through the University of Southern Queensland on the discovery of discrete radio sources in the late 1940s by the Radiophysics Lab in Sydney. His most recent publication is the biography Radio Astronomer – John Bolton and a New Window on the Universe (New South Publishing, 2017). Peter is also a former editor of Australian Physics magazine and is currently an associate editor of Journal of Astronomical History & Heritage.
Prof Sullivan has been on the faculty of the University of Washington in Seattle for over forty years and is now Professor (Emeritus) of Astronomy and History of Science (Adjunct). His interests are in radio astronomy, astrobiology (in particular the search for extraterrestrial intelligence), and the history of astronomy. Together with John Baross he produced the graduate textbook Planets and Life: The Emerging Science of Astrobiology (2007). History of astronomy research has been on the twentieth century, in particular the development of early radio astronomy (Cosmic Noise: A History of Early Radio Astronomy, 2009) and ideas about extraterrestrial life, as well as a long-term project to write a biography of the great 18th-century astronomer William Herschel. He received the Leroy Doggett Prize of the American Astronomical Society for his career contributions to the history of astronomy. Sundials are a passion of his.
Table of Contents
Points of View: Shadows, Photons, Planets, and Life.- Astrobiology.- The Biological Universe Revisited.- Contingency and the Cosmic Perspective.- History of Astronomy.- Grote Reber: Radio Astronomy Pioneer.- Dr Elizabeth Alexander: First Female Radio.- Astronomer.- Radio Astronomy in Holland Before 1960: Just a Bit More than HI.- Jodrell Bank and the Meteor Velocity Controversy.- The Radiophysics Field Stations and the Early.- Development of Radio Astronomy.- Dark Matter and the Owens Valley Radio Observatory.- The Discovery of Sgr A*.- 'Radio Astronomy, Whatever That May Be.' The Marginalization of Early Radio Astronomy.- Telescopes Lofted to Space: An Historical Chronology.- The History of Space Astronomy: Reflections on the Last Three Decades.- SAO During the Whipple Years: The Origins of Project Celescope.- The Transits of Venus and New Technologies: A Time to Reflect.- And the Remaining 22 Photons: The Development of Gamma Ray and Gamma Ray Burst Astronomy.- Sundials and Art.- Gnomonike Techne. The Dialer’s Art and its Meaning for the Ancient World.- Light Work: Contemporary Artists Consider the Sun.