ASTRON was founded in 1949, as the Foundation for Radio radiation from the Sun and Milky Way (SRZM). Its original charge was to develop and operate radio telescopes, the first being systems using surplus wartime radar dishes. The organisation has grown from twenty employees in the early 1960's to about 180 staff members today.
Learn all about the history of the Westerbork telescope or click on the year 1970 above for for the shorter version of this telescope's past.
Below you can see a film about the building of the Dwingeloo Telescope in 1956.
In 1957, Herman Kleibrink documented the events leading up to the building of the Dwingeloo telescope in his film "De Bouw van een Radiotelescoop". A more in depth review of that era was recently published by Van Woerden & Strom.