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Post Info TOPIC: Lincoln Laboratory's Millstone Hill Radar


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RE: Lincoln Laboratory's Millstone Hill Radar
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In 1958, MIT's Lincoln Laboratory announced that it had bounced radar waves off Venus. That apparent success was followed by another, but in England, during Venus' next inferior conjunction. In September 1959, investigators at Jodrell Bank announced that they had validated the 1958 results, yet Lincoln Laboratory failed to duplicate them. All uncertainty was swept aside, when the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) obtained the first unambiguous detection of echoes from Venus in 1961.
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By integrating the Venus-return pulses over time through digital signal processing equipment assembled by MIT doctoral students Robert Price and Paul E. Green, Jr., the Millstone Hill radar could detect radar signals bounced off Venus. Experiments conducted using a maser installed at Millstone Hill during a time of inferior conjunction with Venus on February 10 and 12, 1958 are reported.
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A mammoth MIT antenna installed in 1957 as the first radar system to conduct space surveillance (it observed the Sputnik satellite) is poised for many more years of key observations thanks to a recently completed renovation.
Lincoln Laboratory's Millstone Hill Radar (MHR) antenna is one of the world's principal tools for maintaining the Deep Space Catalog--the listing of the more than 3000 objects circling the Earth 24 miles (40,000 km) away in geosynchronous earth orbit (GEO). Together with two other surveillance radars--ARPA Long-Range Tracking and Instrumentation Radar (ALTAIR, in the Marshall Islands) and Globus II (in Norway), it monitors the increasingly cluttered geosynchronous orbit to reduce the probability of collisions. The three also monitor satellite and spacecraft launches.

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