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Scatter Radar: Space Research From The Ground

1963

Scatter Radar: Space Research From The Ground
"Tells the story of Jicamarca Observatory, new National Bureau of Standards facility near Lima, Peru, and its fascinating new research projects. Jicamarca, largest institution of its kind in the world, uses a 22 acre antenna, probes the upper atmosphere to measure electron densities, makes observations of planets, and studies solar coronas and solar gases. Presents in a travelogue-like sequence, the search for a site for the Observatory near the magnetic equator, watches construction go forward in the arid Jicamarca Valley at the foot of the Andes, and, throughout, observes the cooperation of the Peruvian people and of the Instituto Geofisico del Peru, famous and historic ally-in-science of the National Bureau of Standards. The scatter radar technique is explained in simple animation sequences: high frequency radio waves penetrate the ionosphere; free electrons in the upper atmosphere respond by oscillating and scattering their energy incoherently; the ultra-powerful Jicamarca antenna picks up this faint incoherent scatter. Analysis of this new data, yielding information heretofore concealed, provides the basis for calling this new technique "space research from the ground."

United States. National Bureau of Standards

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