First Space VLBI Image

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About this Image

The right-hand panel shows the active galaxy PKS1519-273 as imaged with HALCA satellite in conjunction with the VLBA and VLA ground-based radio telescopes. The left-hand panel shows the same active galaxy as seen with ground-only radio telescopes. This image is to the same scale as the space-ground image, showing the drastic improvment in resolution provided by the addition of an earth-space baseline. This is the first image ever made using a space-based radio telescope. The observations were conducted on May 22, 1997, approximately three months after the launch of the HALCA satellite. Astronomers and computer scientists used a special-purpose computer, the VLBA Correlator, to digitally combine the signals from the satellite and the ground telescopes to make them all work together as a single, giant radio telescope.

Investigator(s):  H. Hirabayashi and the VSOP team, Jim Ulvestad and Jon Romney

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Technical Data

    Telescope VLA, VLBA, and HALCA 
    Date of Observation 1997-05-22 
    Type of Observation Continuum Observations 
    Band L 
    Wavelength 18 cm 
    Frequency 1.6 GHz 
    Center of Image RA: 15:22:37.67, Dec: -27:30:10.78 (J2000)  
    Field of View 0.0000 x 0.0000 degrees  
    Technical Caption  

  • Astronomical database entries for PKS 1519-273
    • Query NED for images of PKS 1519-273
    • Query SIMBAD for more PKS 1519-273 data


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