Daily Image

Click here or on the picture for a full size image.

CAMRAS 5 years old

Submitter: Andre' van Es
Description: On January 29th 2007, five years ago, the C.A.Muller Radio Astronomical Station (CAMRAS, http://www.camras.nl/ ) was founded. The organisation is named after Prof Ir Muller, the first Director of the 25m Dwingeloo Telescope, and one of the great pioneers of Dutch radio astronomy. The picture shows Maria van der Hoeven (Dutch Minister of Education at that time) handing over the key to the telescope to Remco den Besten (first chairman of CAMRAS).

When it was built in 1956, it was the largest fully steerable radio telescope in the world. Thanks to Prof Muller, its receivers were stable, sensitive, and unusually well-shielded against interference. During its four decades at the forefront of scientific inquiry, the telescope investigated the dynamics of our Galaxy and made several important scientific discoveries. It also paved the way for its even more famous successors, the WSRT and LOFAR.

The CAMRAS volunteers now maintain and operate it. They have achieved a lot in these five years: they put the instrument back in operation, and there are advanced plans to renovate it. All this has resulted in getting the Dwingeloo Telescope designated as a monument ("rijksmonument"). The refurbished telescope is now used for several activities such as:

- educational excursion os astronomy and technology, for instance CAMRAS participates in the "Sterrenkijkdagen", "Open Monumentendag", "Nacht van de Nacht" and intents to join the Global Star Party at April 28th this year
- the telescope is used by radio amateurs moon bouncing (for communication via the moon)
- experiments by amateur astronomers
- cultural events such as OPTICKS ( http://www.opticks.info/blog/ )and the Soundlab project part of "Oerol spoelt aan" in Drenthe

To celebrate the 5th anniversary a symposium is organised today that will address the scientific importance of the instrument, the achievements of CAMRAS in the past five years and the possibilities of the renovated Dwingeloo Telescope in the coming decades.

The work in the past five years would not have been possible without donations and sponsors, and of course volunteers. The symposium is our way of thanking everyone for helping CAMRAS achieve all this in the first five years. And to encourage everyone to keep supporting CAMRAS, so we can continue to share our enthusiasm for science and technology in using this wonderful instrument.
Copyright: Wim de Vries
  Follow us on Twitter
Please feel free to submit an image using the Submit page.