• The Impact of Telemetry on Radio Astronomy

      Janes, Clinton C. (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1995-11)
      The National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) operates the Very Large Array (VLA) Radio Observatory in New Mexico, and the Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA) with 10 radio antenna in locations from Hawaii to St. Croix, as well as other radio telescopes at Green Bank, West Virginia, and the 12 meter radio antenna near Tucson, AZ. Although radio frequency (RF) bands have been set aside for passive use by these radio telescopes, harmful interference from increased demands on the radio spectrum is a growing problem for earth-based radio astronomy. For example, locating a radio observatory in a remote area is little defense from satellite downlink telemetry. This paper describes why the operation of the radio telescopes is susceptible to RF telemetry interference, what bands are particularly vulnerable and at what power levels, and how data collection and centralized control of the arrays are accomplished without RF telemetry.