CSIRO Radio Astronomy Image Archive

About the archive

Welcome to the CSIRO Radio Astronomy Image Archive

The CSIRO Radio Astronomy Image Archive holds a collection of over 15,000 images that relate to the early history of radio astronomy in Australia. These images were taken from 1943 onwards, by professional photographers at the CSIRO Division of Radiophysics and the CSIRO Australia Telescope National Facility. The original images were taken as negatives, photographs and slides.They have been scanned at high resolution to produce TIFF files. The digital collection is maintained by CSIRO Space and Astronomy. The scanned images include people, telescopes, events, observatory sites, engineering and other technical work and science results. The archive also holds approximately 6,000 images taken in later years, and a small number of scanned documents.

Low resolution versions of the scanned images are provided on this website through an interactive application described below. These are made freely available.

High resolution images, copyrights and image credits

This advice was last updated on 16 December 2021.

High resolution digital files for the images in this archive  are held by CSIRO Space and Astronomy. Please read the following notes when making requests:

CRAIA images owned by CSIRO

Images in the archive that are owned by CSIRO are made available for appropriate publication and re-publication, including media, Open Access books and offline electronic formats, with no limitations in duration. 

For images taken on or after 1 January 1955 the copyright is held by CSIRO (@CSIRO). These are provided with a Creative Commons by 4.0 licence. These images must include a credit line ‘Image Credit: CSIRO Radio Astronomy Image Archive.’ There are no other copyright restrictions on these images.

Under Australian law, for images owned by CSIRO, taken prior to 1955, the copyright period has expired and there are no copyright restrictions. However, CSIRO requests that the credit line ‘Image Credit: CSIRO Radio Astronomy Image Archive.’ be included with all CRAIA images.

CRAIA images not owned by CSIRO

For all other images in the archive and for other content such as documents, copyright and credit information is handled on a case-by-case basis. CSIRO will advise as far as possible when high resolution image files are provided.

Publications and further information

Authors are advised that they will need to follow the requirements of specific publishers. 

For further information and to request high resolution image files, please contact ImageArchive[at]atnf.csiro.au.

Getting started

The application has been developed using FileMaker Pro database server and software. The application includes powerful tools for finding images of interest. Here are some brief notes to help you get started.

Connect to the archive

  • Go to the the Archive Application. This will open a new tab or window in your browser, depending on your browser settings.
  • Enter the Account Name as 'craia' and the Password as 'craia'. You should now have access to the application and the image archive.

The browser will initally display a screen with one image and associated information (metadata). The application can now be used to find sets of images of particular interest and these can be sorted and downloaded. Reports about the images can be generated and printed.

Browser note (31 March 2020): This application should work on most browsers - but has not been fully tested on all possible browser options. We recommend Chrome, Safari or Firefox. A problem has been reported on a recent version of Edge. 

Find, sort, download or print images

Step through records

  • Click on the '>' and '<' signs that appear at the top of the screen. 

Find a set of images using search criteria

  • Click on the magnifying glass symbol at the top of the screen.
  • Select the option for 'Enter Find Mode'.
  • Enter some criteria. For example you could set Year = '1946' and the Site where image was taken = 'Dover Heights'.
  • Click on the 'Perform' button to run the search

The number of images currently included as a 'set' is shown near a small circle that can be seen at the top of the screen. For example 'Found 8/21897' means that the archive holds 21897 in total. Of these eight are included in the selected set.

Sort images

  • Click on the 'A-Z' button at top of the screen
  • Select one or more fields for sorting
  • Select sort

Print records

To print a record use the browser printer functions as normal. Files are printed as pdf.

Download image

To download a low resolution image, right click on the image and select 'Export Field Contents'.

Close the archive application

CSIRO has a limited number of licences for use of this website. To make this available to others, please close the application by exiting from the browser.


For high resolution images, help and/or to send any feedback on the archive please contact ImageArchive[at]atnf.csiro.au.

Information about the images is always welcome. To refer to a specific image please include the filename for the image.