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13th of May 2024
An element of the Chris Cross array, built at the Fleurs field station in the 1950s.
The Chris Cross at Fleurs
From 1954 to 1963, CSIRO's Fleurs field station, located 40 km west of central Sydney, was one of the world's leading radio astronomy observatories. Fleurs was home to three innovative radio telescopes: the Mills Cross, Shain Cross and the Chris Cross, all of which played important roles in advancing radio astronomy from the 1950s through to the 1980s, when the site was closed. The Chris Cross, named after its designer, "Chris" Christiansen, was completed in 1957 and comprised 378-m north-south and east-west arms, each containing 32 parabolic dishes 5.8 m in diameter. The Chris Cross operated at 1420 MHz, with a 1.5 arc-minute fan beam, and was initially used to generate two-dimensional high-resolution radio images of the Sun. Fittingly, the image of a Chris Cross antenna above is back-lit by our closest star!

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