Biographical Encyclopedia of Astronomers

2014 Edition
| Editors: Thomas Hockey, Virginia Trimble, Thomas R. Williams, Katherine Bracher, Richard A. Jarrell, Jordan D. MarchéII, JoAnn Palmeri, Daniel W. E. Green

Christiansen, Wilbur Norman

  • Philip Edwards
Reference work entry

BornMelbourne, Victoria, Australia, 9 August 1913

Died26 April 2007

Australian radio astronomer W. N. (Chris) Christiansen received his degrees (B.Sc., 1934; M.Sc., 1935; and D.Sc., 1953) from the University of Melbourne. He was part of a group of radar physicists and engineers who, at the end of World War II, turned their attention to radio astronomy as part of the national research coordinating organization, the Commonwealth Science and Industrial Research Organization [CSIRO], under the leadership of E. G. (Taffy) Bowen and  Joseph Pawsey. The group initially focused on studies of radio emission from the Sun (partly because solar interference had been a major concern in their radar days). In the late 1940s, Christiansen designed an array of 32 parabolic radio dishes to be built in an east–west line along the wall of a reservoir at Potts Hill. The rotation of the Earth carried the line of antennas around at different angles relative to the face of the Sun, so that a sort of map of...

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

Selected References

  1. Christiansen, C. N. and J. A. Högbom (1969). Radiotelescopes. London: Cambridge University Press. 2nd ed., Cambridge, 1985.Google Scholar
  2. Haynes, R., R. Haynes, D. Malin, and R. McGee (1996). Explorers of the Southern Sky. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  3. Sullivan III, W. T., (ed.) (1984). The Early Years of Radio Astronomy: Reflections Fifty Years after Jansky’s Discovery. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Philip Edwards
    • 1
  1. 1.VLBI Space Observatory ProgrammeKanagawaJapan