[NRAO logo]
NRAO logo  


[NRAO dedication, 1957]
NRAO dedication, 1957. NRAO/AUI image


[Dedication of the 85 foot Tatel telescope]
85 foot Tatel Telescope dedication, 1958. NRAO/AUI image


[85 foot Tatel telescope]
85 foot Tatel Telescope. NRAO/AUI image


[Struve at groundbreaking for 300 foot telescope]
Struve at 300 foot ground breaking, 1961. NRAO/AUI image


[300 foot telescope]
300 foot telescope. NRAO/AUI image


[140 Foot telescope ground breaking]
140 foot telescope ground breaking, 1958. NRAO/AUI image


[NRAO 140 Foot telescope]
NRAO 140 Foot telescope. NRAO/AUI image


[Green Bank Interferometer]
Green Bank Interferometer. NRAO/AUI image


[VLA dedication]
VLA dedication, 1980. NRAO/AUI image


[VLA]
VLA. NRAO/AUI image


[AIPS logo]
AIPS logo. NRAO/AUI image


[VLBA Pie Town antenna]
VLBA Pie Town antenna. NRAO/AUI image


[300 foot telescope after 1988 collapse]
300 foot after collapse, 1988. NRAO/AUI image


[GBT ground breaking]
GBT ground breaking, 1991. NRAO/AUI image


[Green Bank Telescope]
Green Bank Telescope. NRAO/AUI image


[Christening block at ALMA Camp ground breaking]
Alma Camp ground breaking. NRAO/AUI image


[ALMA]
ALMA. NRAO/AUI image


[4 NRAO Directors]
Lo, Vanden Bout, Roberts, Heeschen - 4 NRAO Directors at 50th anniversary. NRAO/AUI image


NATIONAL RADIO ASTRONOMY OBSERVATORY ARCHIVES

Finding Aid to the Records of The National Radio Astronomy Observatory, 1951-

Note to researchers: Processing of records of The National Radio Astronomy Observatory is ongoing, as we continually add further material. This Finding Aid provides an outline of the records that will eventually be included in the collection, with more detailed scope and content notes provided for those materials already processed. Interested researchers should contact the Archives about access to both unprocessed and processed material. The NRAO Archives acknowledges with thanks a grant from the Friends of the Center for the History of Physics, American Institute of Physics, which funded processing work during 2007 on Director's Office records for 1951-1978.

Related materials: Many oral interviews in the Papers of Woodruff T. Sullivan III and most oral interviews in the Papers of Kenneth I. Kellermann include discussion of NRAO history and development.

Contents:

Location of collection: National Radio Astronomy Observatory, Archives, 520 Edgemont Rd., Charlottesville, VA. Phone: 1-434-296-0203, email: archivist at nrao.edu

Title and dates of the collection: Records of The National Radio Astronomy Observatory, 1951-.

Size of the collection: Processing is ongoing; size of the collection on 1 May 2012 was approximately 173 linear feet of processed material. Unprocessed material currently held in the Archives includes papers as well as a large quantity of multi-media (photos, slides, negatives, moving pictures, audio, etc), with additional material held elsewhere at NRAO to be added in the future.

Short description of collection: The records of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) document NRAO’s founding, historical development, institutional history, instrument conceptualization and construction, expansion into a multi-site organization, ongoing activities, including its participation in multi-institutional collaborations, and all aspects of the NRAO's scientific, technical, professional, and social life.

Materials in this collection include correspondence, reports, committee notes and minutes, planning documents, drawings, photographs, audio and video recordings, observing proposals, telescope logs, publications and newsletters, long-range and program plans, budget and financial information, quarterly reports, and a wide variety of other materials. The collection also includes Director's Office files for Directors Otto Struve (1959-1961), David S. Heeschen (1962-1978), Morton S. Roberts (1978-1984), Paul A. Vanden Bout (1984-2002). Current Director's Office files for Fred K.Y. Lo (2002-2012) and Anthony J Beasley (2012- ) are held in that office.

The Archives do not include observational data from NRAO telescopes, astronomical images included in the NRAO Image Gallery, or equipment and instruments. Numbered NRAO internal report series, Green Bank workshop proceedings, NRAO reprint series, etc. are part of the NRAO Library collection. Top

Selected search terms:

  • National Radio Astronomy Observatory (U.S.)
  • National Science Foundation
  • Associated Universities, Inc.
  • Radio telescopes
  • National Radio Quiet Zone
  • Very Large Array
  • Very Long Baseline Array
  • Green Bank Telescope
  • Atacama Large Millimeter Array
  • Square Kilometer Array
  • Frequency Agile Solar Radiotelescope

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Administrative History: The NRAO was officially founded on 17 November 1956, when Alan T. Waterman, National Science Foundation (NSF), and Lloyd V. Berkner, Associated Universities, Inc. (AUI), signed the contract for AUI to build and operate a national facility for radio astronomy in Green Bank, WV. AUI continues to operate the NRAO for NSF.

The NRAO's first site and first telescopes were in Green Bank WV, but by 2000 there were offices and additional telescopes in Green Bank WV, Charlottesville VA, Tucson AZ, and Socorro NM. The Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA), with 8 antennas in the continental U.S. and one each in Hawaii and the U.S. Virgin Islands, is operated from Socorro. The NRAO, in cooperation with the European Southern Observatory, the National Research Council of Canada, National Institutes of Natural Sciences of Japan, and the Republic of Chile, is currently constructing a millimeter wavelength telescope, the Atacama Large Millimeter Array, in northern Chile.

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Accession history: The NRAO Archives were begun in May 2003. Prior to that date, institutional records were kept in various offices at different NRAO sites. Initial unprocessed materials transferred to the Archives were the approximately 200 linear feet of inactive files from the Director's Office, including correspondence, subject files, reports, and observing proposals. In spring 2005, approximately 1300 pounds of files, including observing proposals and telescope logs, were shipped to the Archives from Tucson when NRAO closed its office there and turned over the 12 meter telescope to Steward Observatory. An additional 26 linear feet of unprocessed material was transferred from active Director's Office files to the Archives in mid-2007, and 18 linear feet of unprocessed material was transferred from the inactive New Mexico site director's files in 2011; all these materials have been processed and added to the collection. In September 2013 60 linear feet of unprocessed materials were transferred to the Archives from storage in Green Bank, including Hein Hvatum's VLA and VLBA project files and old Electronics Division records; these files remain unprocessed.

Digitization of 600 negatives of the earliest photographs from Green Bank was done in summer 2006 as an Eagle Scout Project. Large photograph collections, primarily 4"x5" black and white negatives and 35mm color slides, originally held in Green Bank and Socorro, were transferred to the Archives in mid-2008. All negatives of figures included in papers published in the open literature, prepared by hand before image-generating software was available, were discarded from the file of 26,000 negatives from Green Bank, thus reducing the number of negatives by more than half. Historic negatives and slides of NRAO sites, equipment, instruments and their construction, people, and activities were retained, and will be digitized, indexed, and added to the collection either as particular photographs are requested or over time as staffing allows.

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Access to collection: No restrictions except to observing proposals as noted below. Portions of this collection are still unprocessed, but materials are generally in organized files to which Archives staff has access. Inventory and processing of the collection is in progress. The Archives are open part-time; contact the Archivist for further information or an appointment.

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Restrictions on use of collection: Observing proposals may be viewed only with specific permission from the Director's office, and may not be reproduced. No other restrictions.

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Publication rights: Copyright belongs to The National Radio Astronomy Observatory. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Archivist.

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Preferred citation: [Identification of item, box, and file], Records of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory. Archives, National Radio Astronomy Observatory / Associated Universities, Inc. / National Science Foundation. After the initial citation, abbreviations may be used: Records of NRAO, NRAO Archives, NRAO/AUI/NSF.

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Processing notes: Processing was begun in spring 2005, and will be an ongoing, multi-year task. A grant from the American Institute of Physics, Center for the History of Physics, funded processing work during 2007 on the Director's Office files from the period 1951-1978. Staples, paper clips, and other fasteners were removed during processing. Preservations photocopies were made of thermofaxs and of most newspaper clippings, and originals discarded. Preservation photocopies were also made of approximately 1.5 linear feet of early 300 foot telescope documents which had suffered water damage while in storage and before being transferred to the Archives; some of these documents are only partially legible. When organizing, refoldering, and indexing the extensive files from the Director's Office, most folder titles were retained. Processing work was done by Ellen Bouton and Evelyn Braintwain.

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Scope and Contents of Collection

NRAO Founding and Organization Series: This series includes correspondence, notes, papers, and planning documents related to the conceptualization, founding, and early organization of NRAO during the period 1951-1963. The series has been divided into four units. Related materials: see also materials on NRAO's early history in the Papers of David S. Heeschen.

  • Correspondence Unit: This unit includes correspondence between members of the National Science Foundation Advisory Panel on Radio Astronomy and the Associated Universities, Inc. Advisory Committee on Radio Astronomy, both convened in 1954. Also included is general correspondence to/from AUI and NSF about NRAO. Chief correspondents include Lloyd V. Berkener, Bart Bok, Charles F. Dunbar, Richard M. Emberson, Fred T. Haddock, John Hagen, David S. Heeschen, Otto Struve, and Merle Tuve. Correspondence covers the period December 1955 to February 1961. Size: 0.5 linear feet. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

  • Planning Documents Unit: This unit includes documents on conceptualization and early plans for NRAO for the period 1951 to 1959. Also included is material on plans for the formal groundbreaking and dedication of NRAO on October 17, 1957, and the NRAO Annual Report of July 1, 1959, prepared by Lloyd Berkner for the Associated Universities, Inc. Board. Related materials: See also 1962 letters by Joseph L. Pawsey outlining his vision for NRAO, filed in the Antenna Planning Unit below; material on organizational policy and management structure in the Director's Office Series, Organizational Charts and Memos Unit. Size: 0.5 linear feet. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

  • Meeting Minutes Unit: This unit includes meeting agendas, notes, and minutes of various formal and informal AUI and NSF committees convened to consider and direct the formation and early operation of NRAO. Meetings included extensive discussions on the early design decisions for the 140 foot telescope, its construction delays, and contract negotiations with E.W. Bliss. Included also are notes on NRAO staff meetings, 1957-1960. Material covers the period 1955 to 1960. Size: 1.0 linear feet. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

  • Antenna Planning Unit: This unit includes correspondence, reports, memos, meeting minutes and other documents related to early discussions on planning and designing of antennas for NRAO, including antennas of various sizes and configurations. Initial discussions referred to a Very Large Antenna, and some formed a foundation for later Very Large Array discussions and conceptualization. Included here is correspondence on Joseph L. Pawsey's appointment as Director, his illness, and his vision for NRAO and its instruments. Also included is a 1959 letter to Struve from Pawsey proposing collaboration in design and construction of Mills Cross-type antennas. Material is dated 1954-1965. Related materials: See also materials in other units of this series, as well as early materials in the Very Large Array series below. Size: 1.0 linear feet. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

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National Science Foundation (NSF) Series:

  • AUI Contracts and Cooperative Agreements Unit: This unit includes materials beginning in 1956 related to contracts and cooperative agreements between NSF and AUI for the management and operation of NRAO. A copy of the current agreement is housed in the office of NRAO's Associate Director of Administration. Size: 1.0 linear feet.

  • Advisory Committees Unit: The groups appointed by NSF to advise on astronomy have had variant and sometimes overlapping names: Advisory Committee for Radio Telescopes (approximately 1959-1965), Astronomy Advisory Panel (approximately 1970-1977), Astronomy Advisory Committee (approximately 1977-1983, and Advisory Committee for Astronomical Sciences [ACAST] (1984- ). Specially appointed subcommittees have included the Subcommittee on Radio Astronomy, and the Subcommittee on Millimeter- and Submillimeter-Wavelength Astronomy. This unit includes reports, memos, correspondence, meeting minutes, and publications dated 1959-1993 related to all these groups, arranged in chronological order. Size: 2.0 linear feet. Click here for a listing of folders, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related material: see the NRAO Founding and Organization Series above for NSF Advisory Panel on Radio Astronomy correspondence, notes, papers, and planning documents related to the conceptualization, founding, and early organization of NRAO during the period 1951-1960. and also Radio Astronomy History Series in the Papers of David S. Heeschen..

  • Management Reviews Unit: NSF conducts periodic reviews of AUI's management of NRAO. This unit currently includes materials for the spring 1987, January 2002 and October 2006 management reviews. Size: 0.25 linear feet, including 1 CD.

  • Astronomy Plans Unit: This unit includes Numbered Astronomy Program Plans (early versions called Numbered Long Range Plans) 9, 11-22, 24-27, dated 1/3/1979 through 12/30/1981, and Dated Astronomy Initiatives Plans (early versions called Dated Long Range Plans) for 12/20/1978, 5/24/1979, 5/1/1981, and 9/9/1981. According to William E. Howard III, who prepared the plans, the Initiatives Plans included things the astronomy community wanted to do, generally items from the Decadal Review and Centers initiatives, that had not yet been included in the NSF budget. The Program Plans showed the available budget for the division divided out among the two sections, Grants and Centers, that existed at that time. Size: 0.25 linear feet.

  • Portfolio Review Committee Unit: The Portfolio Review Committee was charged by the National Science Foundation, Astronomical Sciences Division, with determining the critical capabilities needed to make progress on the science program described by the Astro2010 Decadal Survey report, and suggest what combination of new facilities and programs woould best deliver those capabilities within strict budgetary constraints. The Committee's report was issued on 14 August 2012. This unit includes a copy of the report and of materials related to NRAO's response to the report dated 2012 and forward. Size: 0.25 linear feet.

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Associated Universities, Inc. Series: General materials include Associated Universities, Inc., 1946-1971: Twenty-Five years of Research Management, and Associated Universities, Inc. Organization and Objectives, December 31, 1963, with annual supplements for 1964-1969. Size: 0.25 linear feet.

  • Visiting Committee Unit: The NRAO Visiting Committee is appointed by the AUI Board of Trustees to review the management and research programs of the Observatory. The Visiting Committee meetings are held at alternating NRAO sites. This unit contains correspondence, meeting minutes, and reports beginning with 1957. The Visiting Committee's formal report and the NRAO response are filed separately for 1957-1991, and thereafter are filed with the materials for each specific meeting. Files for the most recent years are kept in the Director's Office rather than the Archives. Current size: 5.0 linear feet.

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Director's Office Series: This series is divided into units which include general correspondence, notes, and papers of NRAO Directors, as well as materials related to NRAO committees, councils, divisions, and other activities under immediate oversight of the Director's Office, including spectrum management and telescope time allocation. Also included here are reports generated by the Director's Office, as well as materials related to the activities of Directors and deputies in non-NRAO professional organizations and committees.

  • Advisory Committees Unit:

    • Users Committee Subunit: The Users Committee, appointed by the NRAO Director, is made up of users and potential users of NRAO facilities from throughout the scientific community. It advises the Director and the Observatory staff on all aspects of Observatory activities that affect the users of the telescopes. This subunit contains correspondence, meeting minutes, memos, notes, agendas, reports, and other materials for meetings beginning with 1965. A folder containing listings of Users Committee members is filed at the beginning of the subunit. Files for the most recent years are kept in the Director's Office rather than the Archives. Current size: 4.0 linear feet.

  • Observatory Internal Committees and Councils Unit: This unit includes notes, correspondence, agendas, meeting minutes, and reports of internal observatory groups, committees, and councils. Material is dated 1961-2001. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Size: 1.5 linear feet.

  • Organizational Charts and Memos Unit: This unit covers 1958-2012 and includes management proposals and memos about organizational and staff changes, as well as organizational charts. Current organizational charts are in digital format and only available internally. Size: 0.5 linear feet.

  • Policies and Procedures Unit: This unit includes Observatory policy and procedure manuals, including safety, procurement, property management, and scientific staff (Brookhaven 1997, NRAO 2006). Scattered holdings, 1993-2006. Size: 0.5 linear feet.
  • Director's Office Correspondence Unit: This unit includes correspondence originating with or directed to the Director's Office.

    • National Science Foundation Correspondence Subunit: This subunit includes correspondence between the NRAO and the NSF from 1959-1995. Principle correspondents are Laura P. Bautz, Erich Bloch, Robert L. Brown, James L. Desmond, Robert L. Dickman, Robert J. Havlen, David S. Heeschen, David E. Hogg, William E. Howard, Robert E. Hughes, Daniel Hunt, Claud Kellett, John P. Lagoyda, John H. Lancaster, Julie H. Lutz, J. Marymor, Walter E. Massey, Ludwig Oster, William H. Porter, R. Marcus Price, Leonard A. Redecke, Kurt W. Riegel, T.R Riffe, Morton S. Roberts, and Paul Vanden Bout. Also included are contracts, photos, and a file of letters and comments from tourists who visited NRAO sites in 1993-1994, sent by NRAO as a packet to the NSF in March 1994. Correspondence for each year is in reverse chronological order as originally filed. Size: 6.0 linear feet.

    • Associated Universities, Inc. Correspondence Subunit: This subunit includes correspondence between the NRAO and AUI dated 1986-1989. Principal corresponsdents are David E. Hogg, William E. Howard III, Jerome Hudis, Robert E. Hughes, Monroe E. Petty, Theodore R. Riffe, Morton S. Roberts, and Gerald F. Tape. Size: 1 folder.

    • Topical Correspondence Subunit: This subunit includes Director's Office correspondence from 1959 through 2006 with organizations and individuals on a wide variety of subjects. Included with the correspondence are memos, notes, reports, meeting minutes, newspaper clippings, drawings, blueprints, and photos. Most original folder titles have been retained, and material is filed alphabetically by topic. Size: 4.5 linear feet. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

    • Heeschen General Correspondence Subunit: This subunit includes David S. Heeschen's Director's Office general and miscellaneous correspondence not included in other Director's Office Correspondence subunits. Correspondence is from 1959-1978 and is filed chronologically. Size: 0.5 linear feet. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

    • 2002 Interim Director Correspondence Subunit: On 1 June 2002 Paul A. Vanden Bout stepped down after 17 years as NRAO Director. W. Miller Goss served as Interim NRAO Director from 1 June 2002 until 1 September 2002, when Fred K.Y. Lo began his term as NRAO Director. This subunit includes correspondence, memos, and other materials retained by Goss related to his work as interim Director and to various ongoing matters during the transition period. Goss's arrangement of material by general topic has been retained. Size: 0.5 linear feet.
  • Director's Office Reports Unit: This unit includes regular reports prepared by the Director's Office for the National Science Foundation, Associated Universities, Inc., National Academy of Sciences, etc. Many reports are available in digital format, see (Director's Office Reports, NRAO internal access only). Specific topical reports are included in other appropriate series or units.

    • Program Plan Subunit: The NRAO Program Plan is prepared for the NSF each year and summarizes the planned programs for the upcoming year, including sections on scientific programs, research instruments, equipment, operations and maintenance, construction, staff, finances, and other topics. Holdings begin with the program plan for 1974 and publication is ongoing. Title variants: Program Operation Plan, Program Operating Plan. Current size: 3.0 linear feet.

    • Long-Range Plan Subunit: Long-Range Plans are prepared for the NSF each year to outline projected plans and needs for the upcoming 5-year period. The Archives holds Long-Range Plans for the period beginning with 1974, and publication is ongoing. Current size: 1.0 linear feet.

    • Strategic Plan Subunit: The Strategic plan describes strategies and goals for the future, focusing on the decade leading to the 2030s. Size: 0.25 linear feet.

    • Observatory Annual Statistical Summary Subunit: Annual Statistical Summaries are prepared by NRAO for NSF. The first summary was for 1968, and publication continued through 2007, with 2007 available only in digital format (Director's Office Reports, NRAO internal access only). The summaries include information on telescope usage; numbers of employees, visiting observers, and students; and the annual bibliography of staff and visitor publications. Current size: 1.5 linear feet.

    • Monthly Summary of NRAO Activities Subunit: At the request of AUI President Lloyd V. Berkner in June 1958, the NRAO began issuing a Monthly Summary of NRAO Activities, with the first summary covering July and August 1958 Monthly Summaries were issued for months through December 1961 and included updates on construction of buildings and instruments in Green Bank, operation of the facility, programs, personnel changes, fiscal matters, and other topics. Size: 0.5 linear feet.

    • Quarterly Reports Subunit: Quarterly Reports replaced the previously issued Monthly Summaries, beginning with the first quarter of 1963. Quarterly reports were issued in paper through FY2012 (July-September 2012). Beginning FY2013 reports are in digital format only (Director's Office Reports, NRAO internal access only). Reports are intended for AUI, the National Science Foundation, and other interested parties. As the NRAO has expanded to multiple sites and projects, they continue to summarize all aspects of NRAO's activities, and include brief summaries of observing programs conducted using NRAO instruments. Current size: 3.5 linear feet.

    • Progress Reports Subunit: Progress Reports, written at the end of the fiscal year, describe the major accomplishments of the NRAO during that fiscal year, with specific reference to the plans described in the Program Plan submitted to the National Science Foundation at the outset of the fiscal year. The first Progress Report reported on fiscal year 2006. Current size: 0.5 linear feet.

    • Annual Reports Subunit: Calendar year documents that report and illustrate the key science, science operations, development, technology, outreach, and construction activities and accomplishments of the NRAO staff and community. First report issued was for CY2012. Reports are available online, e.g. https://science.nrao.edu/legacy/annualreport2012/; substitute the year as appropriate. Current size: 0.5 linear feet.

    • Observatory Reports to the AAS Subunit: Reports of Observatory activity were written for the American Astronomical Society and published in Astronomical Journal (1961-1967) and then in Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society (1969-2003). This subunit includes copies of reports covering the period 1960-2003. NRAO produced no more reports after 2003.

    • Reports and Presentations to NSF Subunit: This subunit includes material retained from reports and presentations by the Director or staff to the National Science Foundation from 1958-2002. Included are annual reports, annual reviews, reports on ADP, testimonies, backup to testimonies, view graphs, transparencies, budget information, ACAST meetings, and other topics. In some cases, only selected materials and/or transparencies from a presentation were retained by the Director’s Office. Size: 2.5 linear feet. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

    • Decadal Reviews Subunit: This subunit includes material dated 1967 and 1989 related to the decadal reviews of astronomy and astrophysics conducted by committees appointed by the National Research Council. Included are materials on the Whitford Committee Report (1967) and NRAO background materials for the 1990s review. Size: 0.25 linear feet.

    • Miscellaneous Presentations Subunit: This subunit includes material retained from reports and presentations by the Director, the AUI President, or others from 1985 through 1993. Included are reports, correspondence, notes, testimonies to Congressional Committees, view graphs, view graph copies, and transcripts. In some cases, only selected materials and/or transparencies from a presentation were retained by the Director’s Office. Size: 0.5 linear feet. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

  • Conferences, Symposia, and Lectures Unit: This unit includes notes, papers, and correspondence about conferences, symposia, colloquia, and lectures sponsored by the NRAO.

    • Jansky Lecture Subunit: The annual Karl G. Jansky Lectureship was established at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory by the Trustees of Associated Universities, Inc. The Lectureship is named in honor of Karl G. Jansky, who first detected radio waves from the Galaxy in 1931 while investigating atmospheric interference in radio reception at meter wavelengths. An initial folder includes correspondence related to the establishment of the Lectureship. Folders for annual lectures contain correspondence and other materials related to that year’s lecture. Some folders may also include biographical information on the lecturer, photographs, publicity materials, or later obituaries. The 1966 Lecture folder includes a photocopy of Bolton’s handwritten lecture text, and the 2000 Lectureship folder includes an illustrated reprint of Radhakrishnan’s address. Also included are posters advertising 1966-2002, 2007-2009, and 2011- lectures. Later years include programs from the internal Jansky symposia often held in conjunction with the lecture. Videos/DVDs of some lectures are included. The 2006 Lectureship was awarded to Frank J. Low, but the lecture was never given. Additionally, there are portrait photos of 1966-2001 Jansky Lecturers. Files for the most current several Lectures are held in the Office of Science and Academic Affairs. Current size: 2.0 linear feet, plus posters and portrait photos filed in flat file case. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

    • Conferences, Symposia, and Colloquia Subunit: This unit includes planning documents, correspondence, and other materials related to conferences, symposia, and colloquia hosted or sponsored by National Radio Astronomy Observatory beginning with the first conference sponsored by NRAO, the USA-USSR Radio Astronomy Symposium, held in Green Bank in May 1961. Attendee lists are included for some meetings, and some folders contain information on accommodation arrangements, food and banquets, and/or transportation arrangements. There is one folder of group photos from conferences for which no other material is held. The unit also includes audio tapes and audio DVDs of the 300ft telescope 25th anniversary symposium in 1987 and the 140ft telescope 30th anniversary symposium in 1995, and both audio and photograph DVDs for Frontiers of Astrophysics, the symposium celebrating NRAO's 50th anniversary held in June 2007. Audio CDs/DVDs for later conferences, symposia, and colloquia are also included. Some files for meetings planned and held at Green Bank, Tucson, or Socorro after the move of the Director’s Office from Green Bank to Charlottesville in late 1965 are currently held at those sites. For correspondence, notes, audio tapes, and audio DVD of the 1983 conference on Serendipitous Discoveries in Radio Astronomy, see the Papers of Kenneth I. Kellermann. For the VLBA Lectures see the VLBA Unit below. Current size: 3.0 linear feet, including DVDs and boxed audio tapes. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

  • Spectrum Management Unit: This unit includes correspondence, memos, reports, notes, charts, newspaper clippings, and journal cuts from 1956 through 2005 regarding spectrum management, including radio frequency interference, protection of telescope sites, and the National Radio Quiet Zone. Primary correspondents for materials in the unit are William Brundage, John W. Findlay, Thomas E. Gergely, David S. Heeschen, Hein Hvatum, Clint Janes, Felix J. Lockman, Mark M. McKinnon, Newton N. Minow, William A. Porter, James B. Potts, Christopher J. Reynolds, George Seielstad, A.R. Thompson, and Paul Vanden Bout. Many original folder titles have been retained; folder contents are in chronological order. Size: 2.0 linear feet. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related materials: See also the materials on radio frequency allocation in the Papers of John W. Findlay and the materials on NRAO Frequency Coordinators meetings in the Papers of A. Richard Thompson. A substantial number of files were received in February 2013 from Christopher J. Reynolds, legal representative for NRAO on spectrum and RFI matters; these files are unprocessed (contact the archivist for information).

  • Telescope Time Allocation Unit: See also the Telescope Time Allocation Reports (TTAR), documents that pertain to the proposal evaluation and time allocation process for NRAO’s North American facilities.

    • Referees Subunit: This subunit currently includes correspondence and lists of referees. Material is dated 1967-1995. Size: 0.25 linear feet.

    • Observing Proposals Subunit: Observing proposals for all telescopes, including those no longer in operation, along with their related referee reports and correspondence, may be viewed only with specific permission from the Director's Office, and may not be reproduced.

    • Telescope Usage Subunit: This subunit includes correspondence, reports, and a CD of Lotus files related to time allocation and usage of NRAO telescopes by both U.S. and foreign observers, and of usage of foreign telescopes by NRAO and other U.S. astronomers. One folder includes materials on Open Skies policy. Material is dated 1959- . Size: 0.5 linear feet.

  • Non-NRAO Professional Organizations and Committees Unit: This unit includes correspondence, meeting minutes, and reports related to activities of NRAO staff, either the Director or persons appointed by the Director, in non-NRAO professional organizations and committees.

    • Committee on Federal Laboratories Subunit: This subunit includes correspondence, memos, and meeting minutes for the Committee on Federal Laboratories of the Federal Council on Science and Technology for the period March 1969 through May 1973. Size: 0.5 linear feet.

    • Fachbeirat - Max-Planck-Institut: This subunit includes correspondence, notes, and reports gathered during David S. Heeschen's tenure on the Fachbeirat between December 1970 and April 1975. Size: 0.5 linear feet.

    • International Astronomical Union Subunit: This subunit includes general correspondence, notes, reports, and meeting minutes related to the International Astronomical Union (IAU), including particularly NRAO's organizational involvement and the involvement of the Director and/or other staff members. Also included are specific files on meetings and symposia, Commission 40, the U.S. National Committee, and the IAU Executive Committee. The period covered is October 1957 through June 1978. Size: 1.5 linear feet. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

    • National Academy of Sciences Subunit: This subunit includes reports, memos, correspondence, meeting minutes, and publications related to the National Academy of Sciences, particularly NRAO's organizational relationships with Academy committees and panels. Included are materials from the Site Evaluation Committee, Ad Hoc Advisory Panel for Large Radio Astronomy Facilities, Radio Astronomy Panel, Astronomy Survey Committees, Committee on Radio Frequencies, Geophysics Research Board, Astronomy Survey Steering Committee, as well as other more temporary groups. The period currently covered is 1959 through 1990. Size: 1.5 linear feet. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

    • National Academy of Sciences, Space Science Board Subunit: The Space Science Board (now renamed as the Space Studies Board) was established in 1958 to oversee interests and responsibilities in space research for the National Academies. It provides information and advice on all aspects of space science and space research, oversees advisory studies and program assessments, facilitates international research coordination, and promotes communications on space science and science policy between the research community, the federal government, and the interested public. The SSB also serves as the U.S. National Committee for the International Council for Science (ICSU) Committee on Space Research (COSPAR). John W. Findlay of NRAO was a member of the Space Science Board from 1961-1973. Materials in this subunit were collected by Findlay, and include correspondence, reports, notes, and meeting minutes. The period covered is 1959-1971. Size: 2.0 linear feet. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

    • National Academy of Sciences, Space Science Board - Space Research Summer Study, 1965 Subunit: The charge of the Space Science Board's Space Research Summer Study, meeting in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, 21 June - 3 July 1965, was to review space research problems of importance for study in the decade, and to reassess the findings of the Summer Study of 1962. The Study group was to consider instrument development programs that might be required as well as the necessary supporting research. John W. Findlay of NRAO chaired the section on Radio and Radar Astronomy. This subunit includes correspondence, notes, general presentation preparation, schedules, papers of various Working Groups, and final reports. The period covered is December 1964 - July 1965. Size: 1.5 linear feet.

    • National Academy of Sciences, Space Science Board - Project West Ford Subunit: Project West Ford was a joint effort of the Department of Defense and NASA to place in orbit at a height of about 2,000 nautical miles a large number of dipole needles to use for communications; they were expected to remain in orbit for as little as 2 years and as many as 100 years. The Space Science Board appointed a committee, headed by John W. Findlay of NRAO, to monitor the project and its effects on radio astronomy. This unit includes correspondence, reports, newspaper clippings, notes, journal cuts, reprints, photos, and other materials from the committee, as well as materials from the IAU Committee on West Ford, and West Ford Observations. The period covered is December 1959 - October 1964. Size: 1.5 linear feet.

    • Radio Astronomy Experiment Selection Panel Subunit: The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the California Institute of Technology Jet Propulsion Laboratory jointly agreed that the specialized facilities of JPL's Deep Space Network (DSN) be made available to support a modest program of ground-based radio science by qualified experimenters of the U.S. radio astronomy community. In April 1969, the Radio Astronomy Experiment Selection Panel was formed, comprised of individuals in radio astronomy and associated fields. The Panel was charged with selecting experiments which would take particular advantage of the unique DSN capabilities. This subunit includes correspondence, reports, meeting agendas and minutes, observing proposals and evaluations, and other materials gathered by Hein Hvatum during his tenure on the Panel, chaired at the time by Jesse Greenstein. Materials are dated 1969-1973. Size: 0.5 linear feet.

    • URSI (International Union of Radio Scientists) Subunit: This subunit includes correspondence, reports, memos, meeting minutes, membership lists, nomination letters, and other materials for the International Union of Radio Science, its U.S. National Committee, and Commission J (Radio Astronomy). David S. Heeschen and Kenneth I. Kellermann were among the NRAO staff members serving as delegates or commission chairs. The period covered is 1957-1977. Size: 0.5 linear feet.

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Green Bank WV Operations Series:

  • Green Bank Site Selection, Procurement, and Development Unit: This unit includes correspondence, meeting minutes, maps, notes, deeds, estimates, memos, charts, blueprints, specifications, reports, contracts, and lab results about the acquisition, planning, and development of the Green Bank, WV, site of The National Radio Astronomy Observatory from 1929 through 1989. Primary correspondents are A. C. Brown of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; Frank Callendar; Charles F. Dunbar of AUI; Richard M. Emberson of AUI; Edward B. Garvey of NSF; David S. Heeschen; R. N. Shepard of Irving Bowman and Associates; various staff of the U.S. Department of Labor; and former Green Bank land owners. Original folder titles and alphabetical order have been retained; folder contents are in chronological order. Size: 2.5 linear feet. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

  • Green Bank Site Administration Unit: This unit includes correspondence, notes, memos, reports, newspaper clippings, journal cuts, and blueprints on administration of the Green Bank site that are not specifically related to site procurement and development or to the various individual telescopes. Materials are dated 1964-2000. Included are materials on schools, housing, medical services, and other topics, and on NRAO's proposal to locate a LIGO installation in Green Bank. Size: 1.5 linear feet. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Two subunits include chronological correspondence files and materials on Green Bank's visitor center, including the Green Bank Science Center.

    • Green Bank Chronological Correspondence Subunit: This subunit includes a chronological file of correspondence originating in Green Bank for the period 1961-1993, with the bulk being from 1967 forward. Letters were filed by the site secretary after typing; correspondence is from the Green Bank site director, division heads, and from scientific, engineering, and other Green Bank staff members. Primary correspondents are Robert L. Brown, Michael M. Davis, John W. Findlay, J. Richard Fisher, Edward B. Fomalont, Martha P. Haynes, David E. Hogg, William G. Horne, William E. Howard, Kenneth I. Kellermann, Felix J. Lockman, Wallace R. Oref, Ivan Pauliny-Toth, Gilbert M. Peery, Theodore R. Riffe, Morton S. Roberts, George A. Seielstad, Sebastian von Hoerner. Topics covered include telescope design and construction (including the 36 foot and the VLA as well as telescopes in Green Bank); modifications to telescopes and electronics; safety; observational programs; early requests for observing time; community relations; observatory activities; staff involvement in URSI, IAU, CORF, and other professional organizations; planning for and development of the VLBA; and international collaborations (including extensive correspondence on early US-USSR VLBI experiments). Correspondence on personnel matters and containing confidential information was destroyed. Size: 6.5 linear feet. Related Materials: For additional materials on the US-USSR VLBI experiments, see the Very Long Baseline Interferometry Series below and the Papers of Kenneth I. Kellermann

    • Green Bank Visitor Center Subunit: This subunit includes correspondence, grant proposals, and other materials dated 1962-2001 on an NRAO visitor center for Green Bank, including the Green Bank Science Center. Correspondence includes discussion of potential interference caused by increased tourist vehicular traffic. Size: 0.5 linear feet.
  • 85 Foot Howard E. Tatel Telescope Unit: The Howard E. Tatel Telescope was dedicated on 16 October 1958, just one year after the official ground-breaking at Green Bank. First observations were made on 13 February 1959. This unit currently includes material from 1956 through 1966 related to the design and construction of the 85ft Howard E. Tatel Telescope: correspondence, notes, graphs, memos, specifications, meeting minutes, diagrams, blueprints, receipts, progress reports, equipment brochures, and the Blaw-Knox contract. Primary correspondents are F. J. Callendar, Fred Crews, Frank Drake, Richard M. Emberson of AUI, J. W. Findlay, D. S. Heeschen, Henry Jasik, Otto Struve, and the staff of Blaw-Knox. Folder titles have been retained. This unit also includes audio tape and audio DVD recordings of the 85 foot telescope dedication ceremony. Original guest book signatures for the dedication are in the guest book for the 17 October 1957 NRAO ground breaking and dedication in the Planning Documents Unit of the NRAO Founding and Organization Series. Size: 1.0 linear foot. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related materials: see photographs in the Photographs Series in this Finding Aid.

  • Calibration Horn Antenna Unit: Construction began on the Calibration Horn Antenna, also known as Little Big Horn or LBH, in summer of 1958, first observations were made in October 1959, and absolute flux measurements of Cassiopeia A began in March 1960. This unit includes two Hein Hvatum LBH lab notebooks for August 1963-July 1964, and John W. Findlay's 1990 draft of a paper on the antenna. Size: 0.25 linear feet. For more extensive files, see the 2.0 linear feet of Calibration Horn Antenna materials dated 1959-1990 in the Papers of John Wilson Findlay, as well as photographs in the Photographs Series in this Finding Aid.

  • 140 foot Telescope Unit: This unit currently covers the period 1955 forward and includes correspondence, notes, graphs, memos, specifications, meeting minutes, diagrams, drawings, sketches, blueprints, reports, equipment brochures, proposals, photographs, financial estimates, telegrams, observing schedules, and the E. W. Bliss contracts. Primary correspondents are N. L. Ashton, Consulting Engineer; Bendix Aviation Corporation; Thomas W. Brown, Lombard Governor Corporation; N. B. Cleveland, Stone and Webster Engineering Corporation; Fred Crews; Richard Emberson, AUI; Jacob Feld; John W. Findlay; The Franklin Institute; General Bronze Corporation; General Dynamics Corporation; General Electric Company; J. P. Gilgallon, E. W. Bliss Company; David S. Heeschen; R. N. Shepard, Irving Bowman and Associates; Silvey and Stallard of MIT; M. M. Small, AUI; and Otto Struve. Many original folder titles have been retained. Two 1964 films on the 140 foot construction, made for NRAO/AUI by Peter B. Good, are included in the Moving Images Series below. Materials on use of the 140 foot for SETI are included in the SETI Series below. Current size: 5.0 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related materials: see extensive discussions on the early design decisions, construction delays, and contract negotiations with E.W. Bliss in the NRAO Founding and Organization Series, as well as photographs in the Photographs Series.

  • Reber Telescope Unit: Grote Reber arrived in Green Bank in late 1958 and in 1959-1960 oversaw the reconstruction of his original Wheaton antenna. In 1990 the Reber antenna was declared a National Historic Landmark by the National Park Service. This unit includes materials related to the effort to obtain the Historic Landmark designation for the telescope, and covers the period 1958-1990. Size: 1 folder. Related materials: see the Wheaton Antenna Unit in the Papers of Grote Reber, which includes correspondence, notes, papers, and drawings for the original 1936-1938 construction in Wheaton IL, as well as Reber's Green Bank reconstruction drawings.

  • 40 Foot Telescope Unit: The 40ft telescope was built in late 1961, and successfully tested on 14 December 1961, providing NRAO with its first fully automated radio telescope in the world. Observations began in early 1962. This unit includes correspondence, telegrams, specifications, bids, blueprints, and photos for the period 1960 through 1963 related to the design and construction of the 40ft. Primary correspondents are Otto Struve, D. S. Heeschen, J. Fred Crews, the National Science Foundation, Antenna Systems, Inc., Blaw-Knox Company, Philco Corporation, Rohr Aircraft Corporation, and D. S. Kennedy and Company. Original folder titles have been retained. Size: 0.5 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related materials: see photograph in the Photographs Series in this Finding Aid.

  • 300 Foot Telescope Unit: Groundbreaking for the 300 foot telescope was on 27 April 1961, and first observations with the telescope occurred on 21 September 1962. This unit includes correspondence, notes, blueprints, cost estimates, memos, photos, telegrams, reports, observing schedules, contracts, newspaper clippings, meeting minutes, charts, diagrams, and graphs from 1959 through 1995. Primary correspondents are Frank J. Callendar, Fred Crews, Frank Drake, Charles F. Dunbar, Richard M. Emberson, John W. Findlay, David S. Heeschen, Radiation Systems, Incorporated, Theodore R. Riffe, Stainback and Scribner, Architects, Stanford Research Institute, and Otto Struve. Original folder titles have been retained. Folder order is alphabetical by title/topic, and folder contents are in reverse chronological order as originally filed. Preservation photocopies were made of approximately 1.5 linear feet of documents which had suffered water damage while in storage and before being transferred to the Archives; some of these documents are only partially legible. Size: 3.5 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related materials: see photographs in the Photographs Series below. An 8-minute DVD about construction of the 300 foot, prepared in 1987 and narrated by John W. Findlay, is included in the Moving Images Series below. Materials on the 1987 symposium celebrating the 25th anniversary of the 300 foot are included in the Conference, Symposia, and Lectures Series.

    • 300 Foot Telescope Time Capsule Subunit: A time capsule was buried in September 1987 at the telescope's 25th birthday celebration. The capsule, a receiver test dewar, was opened on 13 October 2015 at the 50th anniversary celebration of the dedication of the 140 foot telescope. Individual items, whether paper, electronic components, photos, or other items, had been either placed in ziplock plastic bags or wrapped in plastic, then placed in labeled manilla envelopes. After everything had been placed inside the capsule, the air was vacuumed out and nitrogen gas pumped in, creating dry and inert conditions that allowed the contents to remain pristine during their 28 year burial. This subunit includes all items retrieved from the time capsule except those which were retained in Green Bank to be buried in 2015 with a 140 foot time capsule. The materials returned to Green Bank were scanned, and have been included in the item listing with appropriate annotation. Also included are 8 digital photographs showing the opening of the capsule in 2015. Most items have been removed from plastic bags or wrapping, but the original labeled envelopes (or the labels from damaged envelopes) have been retained. Size: 0.5 linear feet plus one bankers box. Click here for an item listing with links to document scans and photographs, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

    • 300 Foot Telescope Collapse Subunit: This subunit includes memos, correspondence, notes, photographs, interviews, reports, phone messages, viewgraphs copies, press releases, and journal articles regarding the collapse of the 300 foot telescope on November 15, 1988. Material is dated 1988-1994. Size: 1.25 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related materials: See photographs in the Photographs Series in this Finding Aid, as well as newspaper clippings and journal cuts shelved with the newspaper clippings file on range 3B.

  • Jansky Antenna Replica Unit: A replica of Karl Jansky's antenna at Bell Laboratories, used in Jansky's detection of radio waves from the center of the Milky Way which was announced in a front page article in the New York Times on 5 May 1933, was built at Bell Laboratories and installed at the entrance to the Green Bank site in 1964. This unit includes correspondence and notes for the period 1962-1977 on the reconstruction and maintenance of the antenna. Primary correspondents are A.C. Beck, John W. Findlay, W.W. Pleasants, Grote Reber, Sidney C. Smith, and Arthur Thompson. Also included are nineteen 1963 Bell Laboratories scale drawings for the antenna reconstruction and two NRAO drawings for the concrete work and of a site overview. Size: 1 folder plus 21 drawings. Related materials: see also correspondence in the Papers of Grote Reber, the Jansky Antenna Project Unit in the Papers of Kenneth I. Kellermann, the photograph in the Photographs Series in this Finding Aid, and Jansky Antenna photographs on another NRAO Web site.

    • Jansky Antenna Project Subunit: This subunit includes materials on the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of Karl Jansky's detection of radio waves from the center of the Milky Way by using the replica of Jansky's antenna at NRAO in Green Bank to operate on the amateur radio 15-meter band for 24 hours on 7-8 May 1983. Materials gathered by Kenneth I. Kellermann include Jansky Project memos, photocopies of articles relevant to Jansky's work (1930-1979), photocopies of articles by Jansky (1932-1935), correspondence, and A.C. Beck's memo to file on construction of the Jansky antenna replica. The Beck memo includes figures and photographs. The amateur radio event was held at the conclusion of a symposium, Serendipitous Discoveries in Radio Astronomy, honoring the anniversary of Jansky's discovery. Material is dated 1930-1983. Size: 0.5 linear feet. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related materials: see also materials on the symposium in the Conferences, Symposia, and Lectures Unit in this Finding Aid.

  • Green Bank Interferometer Unit: Construction on 85-2, a second 85 foot telescope intended to work with the Tatel telescope as a two-element interferometer, was completed in February 1964, and the first observations with the two-element array were made in June 1964. With the completion in spring 1967 of 85-3, the three-element interferometer enabled aperture synthesis observations. This unit currently includes correspondence, notes, memos, contracts, progress reports, operation cost estimates, proposals, and reprints from 1963 through 2000 related to the interferometer, including the U.S. Naval Observatory taking over the operation of the interferometer for radio astrometry. Also included are interferometer observing requests from 1970-1977. Size: 4.0 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related materials: see photograph in the Photographs Series in this Finding Aid.

  • Largest Feasible Steerable Telescope Unit: Discussions in early 1962 on the possibility of a future antenna array, eventually built as the Very Large Array (VLA), led to construction of two additional 85 foot telescopes in Green Bank to form the Green Bank Interferometer, to general discussions and solicitation of design concepts on parametric/parabolic antennas, and to discussions on the design of large telescopes. The working group on the Largest Feasible Steerable Telescope (LFST), also referred to as the Largest Feasible Steerable Paraboloid (LFSP), first met on 2 April 1965. The LFST group's purpose was to conduct feasibility studies on various designs and sizes of parabolic dishes in hopes of building a large antenna for the US radio astronomy community, possibly at NRAO in Green Bank and possibly elsewhere. At various times the group considered 100m, 328ft, 400ft, 450ft, 500ft, 600ft, and 660ft dishes of various designs, as well as a fully steerable 300ft homology telescope to replace and/or augment the existing NRAO 300ft, and a 65m homology telescope for millimeter wavelengths. This unit includes correspondence, design proposals, technical notes, progress reports, drawings by the working group and outside contractors, dated 1957-1972. Folders are filed in chronological order by folder starting date. Current size: 9.5 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related materials: See also Dicke Committee materials filed with the VLA Design and Construction Unit below, and the 3.0 linear feet of LFST materials dated 1959-1973 in the Papers of John Wilson Findlay. Numbered and unnumbered LFST and 65 meter memo and report series have been digitized by the NRAO Library, including the von Hoerner reports in the subunit below.

    • Sebastian von Hoerner Reports and Correspondence Subunit: This subunit includes notes, reports, and correspondence of Sebastian von Hoerner from 1961-1971 related to the LFST project. Size: 0.5 linear feet. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

  • 42 Foot Telescope Unit: The 42 Foot Telescope was a portable antenna acquired in 1966 and deployed in 1967 for use as for use as a remote interferometer element with the Green Bank three-element interferometer. Its primary purpose and use was to test the tropospheric phase stability over baselines comparable to those that were planned for the Very Large Array (VLA). It was successfully used at two sites, with distances of 11 km and 35 km from the main interferometer site. It was decided that a better telescope was needed to pursue science at these baselines, and to further examine the limitations imposed by the atmosphere. Thus a 45 foot telescope was developed in 1973, improving on the 42 foot by having a better surface, enabling operation at high frequencies and supporting observations at two frequencies simultaneously, and by a better mount which enabled accurate pointing over a much greater part of the visible sky. In 1976, after it was no longer needed, the 42 foot telescope and its accessories were transferred to National Astronomy and Ionosphere Center. Note that in some memos, the 42 foot is referred to as the 13 meter. This unit contains correspondence, memos, and financial information from the period 1967-1976. Size: 0.5 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

  • Green Bank Telescope (GBT) Unit: The Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT) replaced the 300 foot telescope, which collapsed in 1988. Planning and design work for the GBT began within a few days of the 300 foot collapse, and the groundbreaking was held on 1 May 1991. The telescope saw "first light" on 22 August 2000, and was dedicated on 25 August 2000. The 110-meter by 100-meter dish has more than two acres of area for collecting faint radio waves from the Universe. Its wheel-and-track design allows the telescope to view the entire sky above 5 degrees elevation, and the track, 64 m (210 ft) in diameter, is level to within a few thousandths of an inch in order to provide precise pointing of the structure while bearing 7300 metric tons (16,000,000 pounds) of moving weight. Related materials: see photographs in the Photographs Series and a DVD of the GBT Dedication Ceremony in the Moving Images Series in this Finding Aid and the GBT Series in the Papers of David E. Hogg, and the GBT Memo Series.

    • Green Bank Telescope (GBT) Planning and Design Subunit: This unit includes notes, correspondence, reports, memos, newspaper clippings, journal cuts, meeting agendas, meeting minutes, press releases, and blueprints from 1987 through 2001, relating to the planning for and design of the GBT. Primary correspondents are Laura P. Bautz, Eric Bloch, Robert C. Byrd, Barbara Mikulski, John D. Rockefeller IV, George Seielstad, and Paul Vanden Bout. Original folder titles have been retained. Most folder contents are in chronological order. Size: 1.0 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

    • Green Bank Telescope (GBT) Proposal and Contracts Subunit: This subunit includes notes, correspondence, reports, meeting agendas, meeting minutes, proposal reviews, memos, and contracts from 1987 through 2001. Primary correspondents are Larry D’Addario, James L. Desmond, William Porter, and Radiation Systems, Inc. Original folder titles have been retained. Size: 0.5 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

    • Green Bank Telescope (GBT) Construction Subunit: This subunit includes correspondence, reports, memos, meeting minutes, blueprints, and photos from 1986 through 1999 related to the construction of the GBT. Original folder titles have been retained. Most folder contents are in chronological order. Size: 0.75 linear feet. Related materials: see GBT photographs in the Photographs Series below. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

    • Green Bank Telescope (GBT) Litigation Subunit: This unit includes correspondence, notes, newspaper clippings, memos, reports, meeting minutes, view graphs, invoices, and briefs from 1991 through February 2001 related to litigation regarding the dispute between NRAO/AUI and COMSAT/RSI over responsibility for additional GBT construction costs. Primary correspondents are Associated Universities, Inc., COMSAT, James L. Desmond, Robert D. Hall, David S. Heeschen, David E. Hogg, Jacob B. Pankowski, William H. Porter, Radiation Systems, Inc., George A. Seielstad, William R. Squires, the Summit Law Group, Richard E. Thomas, and Paul Vanden Bout. Drafts of a 2001 document on lessons learned in the contract and litigation process are included. Original folder titles have been retained. Most folder contents are in chronological order. Size: 2.0 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

    • Green Bank Telescope (GBT) Advisory Committee Subunit: This subunit includes correspondence, meetings agendas, meeting notes, viewgraph copies, reports, memos, blueprints, and photos for the GBT Advisory Committee for the period 1989 through 1998. Correspondence is between Paul Vanden Bout and the members of the GBT Advisory Committee. Original folder titles have been retained. Most folder contents are in chronological order. Size: 1.0 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

    • Green Bank Telescope (GBT) General Materials Subunit: This subunit contains general GBT-related materials, including correspondence, memos, viewgraph copies, reports, meeting minutes, budgets, instrumentation proposals, and other materials from 1988 through 2007. This subunit includes GBT Dedication materials. Original folder titles have been retained. Most folder contents are in chronological order. Size: 1.5 linear foot. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

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Charlottesville VA Operations Series:

  • Charlottesville Site Selection, Procurement, and Development Unit: This unit includes correspondence, notes, memos, journal cuts, graphs, summaries, site proposals, leases, reports, contracts, invoices, maps, and photos about the acquisition, planning, development, and administration of the Charlottesville, VA site of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory from 1963 through 2005, including material on several unsuccessful efforts to expand the Edgemont Road building and on discussions about relocating NRAO headquarters. Facilities include the Edgemont Road, 2015 Ivy Road, and 2551 Ivy Road buildings. Size: 1.0 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related materials: See the Organizational Charts and Memos Unit in the Director's Office Series above for materials on reorganization related to move from Green Bank to Charlottesville in the mid-1960s. See the Edgemont Road Building Addition Unit below for the addition completed in spring 2005.

  • Edgemont Road Building Addition Unit: This unit includes correspondence, meeting minutes, invitation to bid, project specifications, photos, and other materials related to planning, design, and construction of the addition to the Edgemont Road building. Construction began in May 2003 and the occupancy permit was received in April 2005. Material is dated 1998-2005. Size: 2.0 linear feet plus 2 DVDs of photos. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

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Tucson AZ Operations Series:

  • Tucson Site Administration Unit: This unit includes materials on administration of the Tucson site not specifically related to telescope site procurement and development or to the individual telescopes. Included are correspondence, notes, newspaper clippings, blueprints, leases, contracts, and invoices related to the Tucson, Arizona site of the National Radio Astronomy Observatory from 1965 through 1983. Primary correspondents are Harry R. Albers, Edward K. Conklin, W.A. Dinsmore, Richard Doane, John W. Findlay, Leo Goldberg, William G. Horne, N.U. Mayall, T.R. Riffe, and H.J. Thompson. Size: 1.0 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

  • 36 Foot Telescope Unit: Construction of the 36 foot telescope in Tucson AZ began in early 1965, most work was completed by late 1966, the telescope was turned over to NRAO by the manufacturer in May 1967, and the telescope began operation in January 1968. This unit includes correspondence, telegrams, letters of transmittal, proposals, contracts, specifications, blueprints, reports, memos, graphs, charts, diagrams, drawings, brochures, maps, photographs, notes, newspaper clippings, observing logs, and reprints from the period 1962 through 1981. Primary correspondents are Tom Collard, E. K. Conklin, John W. Findlay, Mark A. Gordon, David S. Heeschen, David E. Hogg, J. A. Hungerbuhler, Hein Hvatum, Frank J. Low, Theodore R. Riffe, the Rohr Corporation, and S. C. Smith. Original folder titles have been retained. Size: 6.0 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related materials: See also the materials on measuring the surface of the 36 foot telescope between 1973 and 1977 in the Papers of John Wilson Findlay, as well as photographs in the Photographs Series in this Finding Aid.

    • 36 Foot Observing Logs Subunit: Observing logs list in date/time order all the scans done in each observing program by each observer. This subunit includes 36 foot telescope observing logs for April 1972 - September 1979. According to Mark A. Gordon, Assistant Director for Tucson Operations, September 1973-June 1984, procedure for early observations with the 36 foot telescope was informal and fluid, and observing logs were either not kept formally or not saved. From August 1982 to mid-1984, the telescope was shut down for conversion from 36 foot to 12 meter, and no observing was done. Also, no observations were done during summer shut down for maintenance, generally mid-July through late August. Size: 2.0 linear feet.

  • 12 Meter Telescope Unit: Construction of the 36 foot telescope in Tucson AZ began in early 1965, most work was completed by late 1966, the telescope was turned over to NRAO by the manufacturer in May 1967, and the telescope began operation in January 1968. The first meeting of the Working Group to upgrade the 36 foot to a 12 meter telescope was held on 24 March 1981; the 36 foot ceased observing in summer 1982, and observing began with the refurbished 12 meter in January 1984. Final NRAO observations were done on 25 July 2000, after which the telescope was decommissioned and turned over to the University of Arizona. This unit includes materials on the upgrade and operation dated 1977-1995. Size: 0.5 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related materials: See also the materials on measuring the 12 meter telescope in the Papers of John Wilson Findlay, as well as photographs in the Photographs Series in this Finding Aid. For numbered reports and memos, see Tucson Memos

    • 12 Meter Observing Logs Subunit: Observing logs list in date/time order all the scans done in each observing program by each observer. This subunit includes 12 meter telescope observing logs for January 1987 - 25 July 2000. From August 1982 to mid-1984, the telescope was shut down for conversion from 36 foot to 12 meter, and no observing was done. Also, no observations were done during summer shut down for maintenance, generally mid-July through late August. Final NRAO observations were done on 25 July 2000, after which the telescope was decommissioned and turned over to the University of Arizona. Filed with the telescope logs are 3 Exobyte 8mm archive tapes of raw 12 meter data: 1986 Q4, 1989 Q1, and 23 July 2000, with a guide to observer initials on the tape labels. Size: 5.0 linear feet plus 3 tapes.

  • 25 Meter Telescope Unit: In 1974 NRAO Director David S. Heeschen organized an ad hoc committee to investigate a replacement for the 36 foot telescope. The formal proposal for a 25-Meter Telescope for Millimeter Wavelengths was submitted to the National Science Foundation in July 1977, and in 1979 a subcommittee of the NSF Advisory Committee for Astronomical Sciences unanimously recommended its funding, with Mauna Kea being the site of choice. But after many delays and numerous funding discussions, the Astronomy Advisory Committee voted in April 1982 not to fund the 25 meter millimeter telescope. This unit includes correspondence, memos, reports, journal cuts, newspaper clippings, maps, charts, diagrams, brochures, photos, radome samples, and meeting minutes from 13 June 1966 through 5 June 1984. Primary correspondents are Morton S. Roberts, Hein Hvatum, Mark A. Gordon, Kenneth I. Kellermann, David S. Heeschen, John W. Findlay, and John T. Jefferies. Original folder titles have been retained. Current size: 4.0 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related materials: See also the materials on the 25 meter telescope between 1974 and 1982 in the Papers of John Wilson Findlay. For numbered reports and memos, see Tucson Memos

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New Mexico Operations Series:

  • Site Administration Unit: This unit includes materials on the administration and operation of NRAO's New Mexico-based instruments and facilities. It is from the Pete V. Domenici Science Operations Center (known prior to 2008 as the Array Operations Center) that the VLA, the VLBA, and the expanded Jansky Very Large Array are operated. Included are correspondence, memos, notes, blueprints, newspaper clippings, project status reports, and photos from 1975 forward (bulk 1975-1993) about the site selection for and administration of the Science Operations Center in Socorro, NM. Size: 0.5 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

    • New Mexico Correspondence Subunit: This subunit includes correspondence and memos, primarily that of the New Mexico site director, dated 1980-1989. Size: 1.0 linear feet.

    • Movies Subunit: This subunit includes correspondence, scripts, contracts, and photos dated 1992-2017 related to the filming of movies in Socorro and at the VLA. Most material relates to filming of the Warner Brothers movie, Contact, released in July 1997. Any Warner Brother photos in this unit were provided for display in the VLA Visitor Center only; permission for use of these photos must be obtained from Warner Brothers. Size: 0.5 linear feet. Click here for a listing of folders, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

  • Very Large Array (VLA) Unit: The Very Large Array consists of 27 radio antennas in a Y-shaped configuration on the Plains of San Agustin fifty miles west of Socorro, New Mexico. Each antenna is 25 meters (82 feet) in diameter. The data from the antennas is combined electronically to give the resolution of an antenna 36km (22 miles) across, with the sensitivity of a dish 130 meters (422 feet) in diameter. Formal planning for the VLA began in the mid-1960s, construction began in December 1972, and the VLA dedication was held on 10 October 1980. Discussions on the concept of an antenna array, however, had begun as early as 1955. This unit has been divided into subunits on various aspects of the VLA. Most folder titles have been retained, and material is arranged chronologically. Related materials: See also materials in the NRAO Founding and Organization Antenna Planning Unit above, as well as memos and correspondence on construction and early operation of the VLA in Papers of A. Richard Thompson, the VLA Series in the Papers of David E. Hogg, the oral interview with Campbell P. Wade on the early VLA project and site search, as well as photographs and movies in the Photographs Series and Moving Images Series in this Finding Aid. The numbered VLA memo and report series, as well as the VLA Observational Status Reports, have been digitized by the NRAO Library.

    • VLA Site Selection, Procurement, and Development Subunit: This subunit includes correspondence, maps, blueprints, photos, slides, newspapers, brochures, memos, notes, charts, graphs, reports, diagrams, and surveys dated 1964-1993 related to site selection, procurement, and development for the VLA. Size: 2.25 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

    • VLA Design and Construction Subunit: This subunit includes correspondence, meeting minutes, notes, graphs, charts, outlines, proposals, reports, drawings, reprints, contracts, newspaper clippings, and press releases dated 1963-1993 related to the design and construction of the VLA. Also included are 5 sample circuit boards from the VLA1 correlator. Size: 16.5 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. See also the VLA Construction Photos Subunit in the Photographs Series below.

    • VLA Operations Subunit: This subunit includes journal cuts, charts, correspondence, memos, reports, graphs, notes, diagrams, blueprints, photos, slides, newspaper clippings, brochures, surveys, and DVDs dated 1964-2000 related to the ongoing operation of the VLA. Size 3.75 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

    • VLA Visitor Center Subunit: This subunit includes correspondence, memos, proposals, blueprints, agreements, charts, brochures, guide outlines, and display information dated 1978-1999 related to the VLA Visitor Center. Size: 1.25 linear feet. See also the VLA Visitor Center Photos Subunit in the Photographs Series below.

    • VLA Project and Program Plans Subunit: This subunit includes plans, notes, memos and correspondence concerning the VLA development project (VLA Project Plans) from 1972 through 1976; and plans, notes, memos and correspondence concerning the ongoing progress of the VLA (VLA Program Plans) from 1977 through 1980. Size: 0.5 linear feet.

    • VLA Monthly Reports Subunit: This subunit includes master copies of VLA Monthly Progress Reports for 1974-1980, with 107 black and white photo prints as illustrations. Also included are VLA Electronics Division Progress Reports, 1974-1980. The 107 photos included in the VLA Monthly Progress Reports have been digitized; contact the Archivist for information and copies. Size: 1.0 linear feet.

    • VLA Budget Subunit: This subunit includes memos, graphs, charts, schedules, and estimates regarding the VLA budget from 1965 through 1981, with one budget from 1989. Also included is the NSF audit of the VLA project dated May 1977. Size: 1.25 linear feet.

    • VLA Advisory Committees Subunit: This subunit includes correspondence, memos, meeting minutes, notes, and reports from various VLA advisory committees for the period 1973-1984. Original folder titles have been retained. Most folder contents are in chronological order. Size: 1.0 linear feet. Click here for a listing of folders, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

    • Voyager Project Subunit: The VLA was used with Jet Propulsion Laboratory’s Deep Space Network in Goldstone CA to track NASA’s Voyager 2 encounter with Neptune in August 1989. This subunit includes correspondence, memos, reports, planning documents, and fly-by timeline from 1982 through 1991 related to the NASA Voyager project. Primary correspondents include Michael Balister, Donald W. Brown, William Brundage, Hein Hvatum, P. T. Lyman, Peter Napier, William Porter, Theodore R. Riffe, Morton S. Roberts, A. Richard Thompson, Paul Vanden Bout, and S. Weinreb. Also included are Voyager Bulletins and VLA-GDSSCC Telemetry Array Project Quarterly Reports, a PR file of clippings and brochures, a VLA-Voyager PR packet, and a DVD of a 5 October 1989 colloquium by Ellis Miner on the Voyager Neptune Encounter. Size: 1.0 linear feet. Related materials: See Voyager Encounter movies in the Moving Images Series in this Finding Aid, and the Voyager Project Series in the Papers of James S. Ulvestad.

    • Expanded Very Large Array (EVLA) / Jansky Very Large Array (JVLA) Subunit: The original VLA was authorized by Congress in 1972, and astronomers began using it for research even before its dedication in 1980. Scientific rewards of enhancing the VLA were described to the Bahcall Committee in 1991, and NRAO included a comprehensive VLA upgrade in its Long Range Plan sent to the NSF in October 1993. Upgrading the electronics of the VLA to the technological state of the art began in 2001, and was completed in 2012. The upgrade project was funded by the National Science Foundation, and by contributions from Canada and Mexico. The upgrade replaced the 1970s-vintage electronic equipment, analog data-transmission system, and the central, special-purpose computing "heart" of the system with state-of-the-art receivers and electronics, an all-digital, high-bandwidth fiber-optic data-transmission system, and a new, central supercomputer with an innovative design, built by NRAO's Canadian colleagues. When the upgrade project started, and through most of the work, the VLA was called the Expanded VLA, or EVLA, so most materials dated prior to the rededication refer to the instrument as the EVLA. The expanded and upgraded VLA was officially renamed as the Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array at a rededication ceremony on 31 March 2012. However, the instrument is still called the Very Large Array or VLA in NRAO documents. This subunit includes materials from 1995 forward specifically related to the upgrade. Size: 1.5 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

    • Next Generation Very Large Array (ngVLA) Subunit: The next-generation VLA (ngVLA) is a future centimeter-to-millimeter wave interferometer that builds on the legacy of the JVLA and ALMA as the next major facility in ground-based US radio astronomy. The current baseline design consists of 214 18m dishes, centered at the location of the VLA site on the plains of San Agustin, with additional long-baseline stations spread over greater New Mexico, Texas, and Mexico. Depending on the recommendation for the Astro2020 Decadal Survey, the ngVLA expects to enter the design phase in late 2021 and have a final design completed by late 2024. Procurement and construction would commence in 2025 and should be completed by 2034. The first workshop to discuss the ngVLA concept was held on 4 January 2015 at the Seattle American Astronomical Society meeting, and discussions continued at subsequent meetings and in science working groups. The earliest white papers date from mid-2015 and are included in the ngVLA Memo Series, 1 June 2015 forward. The earliest science working group documents date from late 2014. For further information and links to documentation, see the ngVLA Web page.

  • Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) Unit: The VLBA consists of ten, 240-ton, 25-meter diameter dish antennas spread across the Western Hemisphere, from Hawaii to St. Croix, Virgin Islands. Construction began in February, 1986, and was completed in May, 1993. The first observation using all ten sites occurred May 29, 1993. Telescopes are remotely controlled from the Array Operations Center in Socorro, NM. This unit currently includes correspondence, notes, memos, reports, materials on site selection, and construction proposals from 1974 through 2006. Many original folder titles have been retained. Size: 5.5 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related materials: In this finding aid for the Records of NRAO, see materials on Very Long Baseline Interferometry, as the VLBI Series includes early discussions and background related to the VLBA; see VLBA construction photographs in the Photographs Series. In the Papers of Marshall Cohen and the Papers of Kenneth I. Kellermann, see materials on history and development of the VLBA; in the Papers of A. Richard Thompson, see correspondence on planning for and development of VLBA electronics; in the Papers of Paul A. Vanden Bout see the materials on site selection for the VLBA operations center. The numbered VLBA memo series have been digitized by the NRAO Library.

    • VLBA Advisory Committees Subunit: This subunit includes notes, correspondence, budget and cost estimates, agendas, and other materials for the VLBA Advisory Committee for the period 1987-1991. Size: 0.25 linear feet.

    • VLBA Lecture Series Subunit: The VLBA Lecture Series includes one 1985 lecture on the telescope design and 15 lectures from August-November 1991. The lectures on various aspects of the instrument were given by NRAO staff and were intended as introduction and training for other NRAO staff. The Archives has DVD copies of the lectures. Users should be aware that the company that converted the lectures from the original VHS to DVD made numerous errors in the labeling of the DVDs, misspelling names and titling the series Very Large Baseline Array Lecture Series instead of Very Long Baseline Array Lecture Series. Size: 16 DVDs. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

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Very Long Baseline Interferometry (VLBI) Series: This series includes correspondence, memos, telegrams, press releases, charts, meeting minutes, reports, notes, faxes, newsletters, and photos dated 1966-2003. Primary correspondents are Barry Clark, Marshall H. Cohen, Frank Drake, John W. Findlay, David S. Heeschen, William E. Howard, Kenneth I. Kellermann, L. Matveyenko, Ya. V. Peive, Morton Roberts, Randall M. Robertson, Paul Vanden Bout, and Sander Weinreb. Materials on institutional collaborations, including Soviet-US VLBI experiments, are also included. Original folder titles have been retained and folder contents are in chronological order. Size: 2.0 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related materials: For other materials on VLBI, see also the Papers of Marshall H. Cohen and the Papers of Kenneth I. Kellermann.

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Space VLBI Series: Space Very Long Baseline Interferometry, also called Orbiting Very Long Baseline Interferometry (OVLBI) uses ground-based elements combined with one or more space-based VLBI antennas, creating even greater angular resolution than is possible with even the most widely spaced earth-based array. This series has been divided into four units, but researchers should note that there is considerable overlap, with documents filed in one unit including material about or related to other units. Related materials: see the materials on various Space VLBI missions and projects in the Papers of Robert L. Brown, Papers of Bernard F. Burke, the Papers of Kenneth I. Kellermann, and the Papers of James S. Ulvestad.

  • Advanced Radio Interferometry Between Space and Earth (ARISE) Unit: ARISE was a proposed future space VLBI mission that would succeed the VLBI Space Observatory Program (VSOP; see separate entry below). It was one of the moderate-sized projects recommended by the decadal survey in astronomy in 2000 (Astronomy and Astrophysics in the New Millennium). The primary mission goal was to orbit a radio telescope whose performance for high-frequency VLBI would be similar to a 25-meter antenna of the Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA). This unit includes correspondence, newsletters, meeting agenda, meeting minutes, and notes from 1996 through 1999. Size: 1 folder.

  • Quasat Unit: Quasat was to be an Earth-orbiting radio antenna used in conjunction with ground-based Very-Long-Baseline Interferometry (VLBI) networks in Europe, the USA, the USSR, and Australia. Initial discussions began in 1982; planning ended in 1988. This unit includes workshop agendas, recommendations, conclusions, correspondence, meeting arrangements, reports, memos, and notes from 1982 through January 1989. Size: 0.5 linear feet.

  • RadioAstron Unit: RadioAstron is an international space VLBI project led by the Astro Space Center of Lebedev Physical Institute in Moscow, Russia. Launch was on 18 July 2011 and the space radio telescope was unfolded on 23 July 2011. NRAO's 140-ft antenna is used as one of two data acquisition stations, and the GBT is often used as one of the ground elements of the Earth-Space interferometer. This unit includes correspondence, memos, reports, notes, meeting minutes, journal cuts, video of a 1990 talk by Sander Weinreb, and newspaper clippings. Material is dated 1985-1993. Size: 0.75 linear feet.

  • VLBI Space Observatory Program (VSOP) Unit: VSOP was the first dedicated space VLBI mission, an international collaboration led by Japan's Institute of Space and Astronautical Science (ISAS). The Highly Advanced Laboratory for Communications and Astronomy (HALCA) spacecraft, launched by ISAS in February 1997, was used in coordination with ground telescopes, tracking stations, correlators, and user facilities at many astronomical institutions. HALCA's altitude control failed in 2003 and the mission ended in 2005, exceeding its three-year predicted life span. The primary NRAO instrument used for the ground based elements of the Earth-Space interferometer was the VLBA, although there was also some use of the phased VLA and of the 140 foot, then the GBT. The NRAO downlink component (ground station) for VSOP was the 45 foot antenna in Green Bank. This unit includes correspondence, memos, newspaper clippings, reports, view graph copies, meeting agendas, meeting minutes, diagrams, proposals, and reprints from 1986 through 2005. Materials on the 45 foot Green Bank Tracking Station, as well as NASA/NSF/NRAO MOUs are also included. Primary correspondents are Robert L. Brown, Larry R. D’Addario, James Desmond, Edward Fomalont, Michael Kaplan, Kenneth I. Kellermann, R.A. Preston, Jonathan D. Romney, Joel. G. Smith, Paul Vanden Bout, and Anton Zensus. Size: 1.5 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. The numbered OVLBI memo series has been digitized by the NRAO Library.

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Millimeter Array (MMA) Series: U.S. community science workshops on the design of a synthesis array for millimeter-wave astronomy were first held in 1982 and continued through 1989. In July 1990 the National Radio Astronomy Observatory submitted a proposal for a millimeter array to the National Science Foundation (NSF), and in 1991 the decadal report of the National Research Council's Astronomy Survey Committee recommended the Millimeter Array as the highest priority ground-based astronomy project for the 1990s. Planning and site research began at NRAO, in November 1994 National Science Board (NSB) approved a project development plan for the MMA and endorsed further planning, and in May 1998 the NSB authorized the expenditure of $26M for a three-year MMA design and development program. In June 1999, the NSF signed a Memorandum of Understanding with European institutions for a joint design and development phase of the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), a project that joined the MMA with the European Large Southern Array project. Related materials: See the Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA) Series below for materials after the MMA project became ALMA. For additional materials on the MMA, see also the Papers of Robert L. Brown, the Papers of Mark A. Gordon, the Papers of David E. Hogg, the Papers of Paul A. Vanden Bout, and the MMA/ALMA Memo Series.

  • MMA Site Selection Unit: This unit includes correspondence, notes, reports, meeting presentations, press releases, newspaper clippings, and other materials dated 1980-1999 related to the search for a site for the MMA. There are materials on both U.S. and non-U.S. sites, including Chile. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Size: 1.0 linear feet.

  • MMA Planning Unit: This unit includes correspondence, reports, meeting presentations and proceedings, proposals, and other materials dated 1975-2000 on the planning process for the MMA, including discussions about international collaboration on the project. Size: 2.5 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

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Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) Series: The Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), an international partnership of Europe, North America and East Asia in cooperation with the Republic of Chile, is a single telescope of revolutionary design, composed initially of 66 high precision antennas located on the Chajnantor plateau, 5000 meters altitude in northern Chile. NRAO leads the North American component of the effort, whose participants include the United States, Canada, and Taiwan. In June 1999, the National Science Foundation signed a Memorandum of Understanding with European institutions for a joint design and development phase of the Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA), a project that joined NRAO's planned Millimeter Array (MMA) with the European Large Southern Array project. In November 2001 the U.S. Congress appropriated the first construction money for ALMA. Groundbreaking for the Operations Support Facility near San Pedro de Atacama, Chile, was in November 2003, and groundbreaking for the Technical Building at the 5000m altitude Array Operations Site was in October 2005. On 30 September 2011 ALMA officially began Early Science observations in northern Chile, and on 13 March 2013 ALMA was formally inaugurated after nearly three decades of planning, engineering, and construction. Related materials: See the Millimeter Array (MMA) Series above for materials before the MMA became ALMA. For additional materials on ALMA, see also the Papers of Robert L. Brown, the Papers of Mark A. Gordon, the Papers of Paul A. Vanden Bout, the Biweekly/Monthly Calendar of the ALMA Project at NRAO, and the ALMA Memo Series.

  • ALMA Multi-institutional Agreements Unit: This unit includes various agreements, MOUs, meeting materials, reports, agreements, correspondence, and notes dated 1998-2006 related to ALMA multi-institutional agreements. Size: 0.25 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

  • ALMA Advisory and Coordinating Committees Unit: This unit includes reports, summaries, and meeting materials dated 2000-2007. Size: 0.25 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

  • ALMA Planning Unit: This unit includes correspondence, notes, meeting materials, reports, and viewgraph copies dated 1998-2006 related to the planning and ongoing construction phase management for ALMA, including plans for Tucson facilities. Size: 1.0 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

  • ALMA Design and Construction Unit: This unit includes correspondence, memos,reports, antenna purchase orders, meeting materials, groundbreaking ceremony materials, construction project books, and other materials related to ALMA construction. Materials are dated 1998-2008. Size: 1.0 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

  • ALMA Chile Project Office Unit: This unit currently includes materials dated 2006-2009 related to the architectural and engineering services for design of the ALMA offices in Santiago, Chile. Size: 0.25 linear feet.

  • ALMA Operations Unit: This unit includes materials related to the ongoing operations of ALMA. It currently includes only the ALMA Operations Plan, version D, submitted to the ALMA Board on 10/9/2007. Size: 0.25 linear feet.

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Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) Series: This series includes materials dated 1987-1998 on SETI and on NRAO's participation in SETI projects, with most materials related to use of the 140 foot telescope in Green Bank in collaboration with NASA-JPL and the SETI Institute, and to the SETI Institute's Phoenix project. Included are correspondence, reports, MOUs, newspaper clippings and journal cuts, and public information materials. Size: 1.0 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related materials: Materials from the 1961 Green Bank conference on Extraterrestrial Intelligent Life, as well as the 1985 Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence and the 2010 Ozma@50 meetings, are in the Conferences, Symposia, and Colloquia Subunit above. See also the Papers of Ronald N. Bracewell, the Papers of John D. Kraus, and the Conferences and Lectures listing in the Papers of Woodruff T. Sullivan III.. Researchers should also seek out materials on Ozma with NRAO records and Sullivan papers.

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Electronics Division Series: This series includes materials dated 1958-1997 on design, development, construction, and use of the electronics equipment and components for telescopes, data receipt and processing, both equipment purchased from outside vendors and that built in-house, as well as materials on equipment built at NRAO for others. Electronics materials originally filed with the papers on specific telescopes, e.g. the 140 foot or the VLA, have been retained where originally filed, so researchers will need to refer also to those series/units. Most of the materials in this series come from files retained by Electronics Division managers, particularly Hein Hvatum and Sander Weinreb. Material is grouped alphabetically by topic, using folder headings from the original files. Topical files include correspondence and memos, specifications, bids, reports, photographs, drawings, reprints, etc. Size: 2.5 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related materials: For Electronics Division and Engineering Division numbered memos and reports, see Electronic Division Memos and Engineering Division Memos.

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Computing, Software, and Information Services Series: This series includes materials on computing, software development, data management, and other related topics. For computing related to specific instruments, e.g. the VLA, see the units for those instruments. Related materials: For Computing Division numbered reports and memos, see Computing Division Memos

  • General Materials Unit: This unit currently includes general correspondence, reports, memos, brochures, notes, meeting materials, journal cuts, newspaper clippings, and DVDs from 1963 through 1999 concerning computing at NRAO. Size: 2.0 linear feet. Click here for a folder listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

  • Software Development Unit

    • AIPS Subunit: AIPS (Astronomical Image Processing System) is a software package developed at NRAO for interactive calibration, construction, display and analysis of astronomical images made from radio interferometric data. Design and development of the package began in 1978. AIPS is designed to run, with minimal modifications, in a wide variety of computing environments. NRAO licensed the software to other institutions and provided support and updates. Some AIPS use occurs outside observational astronomy, e.g. in visualization of numerical sumulations of fluid processes and in medical imaging. This subunit includes correspondence, memos, and reports dated 1981-1999. Size: 0.25 linear feet. For information on the AIPS package and for documentation, see the AIPS Web page.

    • AIPS++ Subunit: AIPS++ was a multi-institutional collaborative effort led by NRAO to jointly develop a new astronomical data processing package to cover, at a minimum, the same functionality as AIPS, but to be easily extended to cover a wider variety of instruments and techniques. The initial agreement for cooperative development was signed in January 1992 by representatives of Australia Telescope National Facility, Berkeley Illinois Maryland Array, Herzberg Institute for Astrophysics (DRAO), National Radio Astronomy Observatory, Netherlands Foundation for Research in Astronomy, and Nuffield Radio Astronomy Laboratories. This subunit includes correspondence, memos, reports, agreements, and other materials dated 1991-1999, as well as quarterly project reports for 1995-1999. Size: 0.5 linear feet.

  • Data Management Division Unit: This unit includes materials dated 1997-2000 on the proposal for a Data Management Division and its tasks and scope. Size: 0.25 linear feet.

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Education and Public Outreach (EPO) Series:

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Student Programs Series: This series includes materials from 1959 forward related to NRAO's various programs for students including the Research Experiences for Undergraduates Program, Summer Students Program, Student Cooperative Education Program, Research Experiences for Teachers Program, Secondary Science Teachers Institute, and programs for elementary and high school students.

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Fiscal and Business Services Series:

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Human Resources Series: The Archives does not include personnel information, which is the legally mandated responsibility of the Human Resources Office. Personnel policies are also available from the Human Resources Office. Currently included here are materials dated 1991-1993 on a Human Resources Task Force. Size: 1 folder.

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Publications Series: This series includes regular publications by NRAO intended for internal and/or external distribution.

  • Observer Unit: The Observer was NRAO's in-house newsletter, published from December 1961 (vol. 1, no. 1) through October 1981 (vol. 22, no. 4). It included articles from all sites on NRAO social and sporting events, instrument construction and modification, technical achievements, and local history, as well as informal science articles, such as the three-article series on the first US-USSR VLBI experiment. The Observer was illustrated with photographs and drawings, and regularly included photographs of new employees. Click here for a listing of Observer issues in text-searchable pdf. Size: 1.0 linear feet.

  • NRAO Newsletter Unit: The NRAO Newsletter provided technical, operational, and general information about NRAO and its instruments to users, prospective users, members of the wider astronomical community, and NRAO staff. It included both general and site-specific information. Issue 1 was published on 1 July 1981 and the Newsletter ceased paper publication with issue 115, April 2008. The Archives holds paper versions of Issues 1-115. Size: 1.0 linear feet. Click here for digital versions of the paper NRAO Newsletter, issues 1-115, July 1982-April 2008. The paper Newsletter was replaced by the NRAO eNews, beginning with volume 1, issue 1, June 2008. eNews issues may be found by clicking the link for the NRAO eNews on the left sidebar of the NRAO science page, then using the "View Past Issues" dropdown in the left sidebar of the current eNews issue.

  • Site Newsletters Unit: This unit includes employee newsletter published at individual sites. The Green Bank Tattler was an in-house newsletter for Green Bank employees, published from April 1993 (vol. 1, no. 1) through June 1998 (vol. 6, no. 1). It included articles on Green Bank social and sporting events, instrument construction and modification, technical achievements, and local history, and was illustrated with photographs. The first issue was called Around the Site; Frank Ghigo chose the name The Green Bank Tattler and the title was used beginning with vol. 1 no. 2. Photocopies were made of issues in the NRAO library for which originals are not available. Digital issues are here. The AOC News (Archives has issues for 1996-1997), the VLA/VLBA Newsletter (Archives has issues for 1997-2002), the AOC News (Archives has issues for 1999-2003), and the NRAO NM News (Archives has issues for 2003-2007) were all produced in New Mexico for employees there. Digital versions are here. Size: 0.25 linear feet.

  • Point Source Unit: The Point Source was an in-house newsletter for NRAO employees published from Winter 1994 (vol. 1, no. 1) through Summer/Fall 2004 (vol. 10, no. 2). Like the earlier Observer, The Point Source included articles from all sites on NRAO social and sporting events, instrument construction and modification, technical achievements, and local history, as well as informal science articles and information on employee benefits. It was illustrated with photographs and drawings, and regularly included lists of new and departing employees and of service award recipients. The first issue was called simply NRAO News; The Point Source was chosen in a newsletter naming contest announced in vol. 1 no. 1, and was used beginning with vol. 1 no. 2. There are two different issues numbered as vol. 6 no. 2 Spring 2000, the second of which should have been vol. 6 no. 3 Fall 2000. The Archives holds paper versions. Size: 0.25 linear feet. Digital versions of the Point Source are here.

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Photographs Series: The Archives includes many thousands of NRAO photographs of people, events, telescopes and telescope construction, building construction, etc. Only a small percentage of our photographs have been digitized, and the digitized images linked in the units/subunits below represent a sampling of photographs in the collection. Note that photographs are also included in some of the series listed above, e.g. photographs taken at symposia and lectures are included with symposia/lecture materials, and photos of the 2003-2005 Edgemont Road addition construction are included with that unit. Contact the Archivist for information about or requests for images, including those not yet digitized. Total approximate linear footage for all units in this series: 90.0 linear feet.

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Moving Images Series: Note that moving images are also included in some of the series listed above, e.g. DVDs of symposia and lectures are included in the Conferences, Symposia, and Lectures Unit in the Director's Office Series above, and the VLBA Lectures Subunit in the VLBA Unit above.

  • News Footage Unit: This unit includes moving images of news footage about people or events at NRAO dated 1991-1993. Current size: 3 DVDs. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections.

  • Green Bank WV Unit: This unit includes approximately 100 16mm films dated 1957-1959, most only a few minutes in length, showing construction of the 85 foot Tatel telescope, early 140 foot construction, construction of site buildings, and other miscellaneous events. Also included here, in both original film and DVD version, are three films used as the introduction to visitor tours in Green Bank - The Observatory (~1964), A Radio View of the Universe (1967), and The Invisible Universe (1975); film, video, and DVD copies of The Lift and The 140 Foot Telescope Construction Story, two 1964 films on the 140 foot construction, made for NRAO/AUI by Peter B. Good; an 8-minute DVD about construction of the 300 foot, prepared in 1987 and narrated by John W. Findlay; footage of the 300 foot 25th anniversary celebration, 23-26 September 1987; video and DVD copies of three GBT construction events in May 1995; and a DVD of the Green Bank Telescope Dedication Ceremony on 25 August 2000.

  • Very Large Array (VLA) Unit: This unit includes videos and DVDs of the VLA, including the Voyager Encounter, dated 1988-1991. Current size: 8 VHS videos, 2 DVDs. Click here for an itemized listing, or use the NRAO Archives online catalog to search for specific items or across multiple series/collections. Related materials: See the VLA Unit and Voyager Project Subunit in this Finding Aid.

  • Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) Unit: This unit includes videos and DVDs of the VLBA dated 1991-1993 showing construction and electronics outfitting of the Mauna Kea antenna, and the VLBA opening ceremonies on 20 August 1993. Unit includes the original videos and digitized copies on DVD. Size: 3 VHS videos, 3 DVDs.

  • Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) Unit: This unit includes DVDs on ALMA dated 2004-2013. Size: 3 DVDs.

  • Education and Public Outreach (EPO) Video Unit: Links to EPO's online videos about NRAO instruments and about radio astronomy are here and here.

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Related Material: Personal papers in the Archives include a substantial amount of additional material gathered by individuals in their various official capacities at NRAO. Interested researchers should therefore review files from appropriate series in the Papers of David S. Heeschen, John Wilson Findlay, and A. Richard Thompson. The Papers of Grote Reber include correspondence with and about NRAO. John D. Kraus served on the National Science Foundation panel, convened in 1954, that wrote the initial feasibility study for a national radio astronomy facility and recommended Green Bank WV as the site for what became NRAO; his papers include his retained correspondence from that panel.

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Unprocessed Material: Much of this collection is unprocessed, but is generally in organized files to which Archives staff has access. Inventory and processing of the collection is in progress; contact the Archivist for information.

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Modified on Tuesday, 14-Aug-2018 08:19:36 EDT by Ellen Bouton, Archivist (Questions or feedback)