VLBI in Space: An Introduction

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Session 27 -- The Space VLBI Mission VSOP182
Oral presentation, Tuesday, June 13, 1995, 8:30am - 12:30pm

[27.01] VLBI in Space: An Introduction

Bernard F.~Burke (MIT)

The proposal to extend VLBI methods to include radio telescopes in orbit was first put forward about twenty years ago, but it made a significant step toward reality when the QUASAT project was initiated in the early 1980s. The Gross Enzersdorf Workshop, held in 1984 (ESA SP-213), demonstrated that the concept was both scientifically and technically feasible, and in subsequent years both the RADIOASTRON and VSOP missions were started. The final demonstration of feasibility came when the TDRSS satellite was used to give a convincing proof that fringes would be clearly detected at baselines well beyond an Earth diameter (Levy et al., 1986, Science 234, 187; Levy et al., 1989, Ap.J., 336 , 1098; Linfield et al., 1989, Ap.J., 336, 1105; Linfield et al., 1990, Ap.J., 358, 350). The VSOP mission of ISAS (Japan), also known as MUSES-B, is now in preparation for a 1996 launch. This special workshop, therefore, is part of the process of informing, instructing, and preparing the scientific community for participation in the work of this international mission.

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