You’ve likely never heard of Poolesville, Maryland (unless you’re a radio history geek). This recent piece from Atlas Obscura dives into the neat story of the two scientists who accessed organic radio waves there back in the 1950s.
In 1955, a pair of researchers from the Carnegie Institution in Washington, D.C. named Bernard Burke and Kenneth Franklin were working in a relatively new area of astronomy when they made an unexpected discovery.
Researchers had already discovered several sources of radio waves in the sky, and the two were using a sophisticated antenna called the Mills Cross Array to build upon existing knowledge. The Mills Cross Array was developed by Australian radio astronomer B.Y. Mills and Martin Ryle of England. It consisted of legs of 66 unpainted poles connected by over five miles of wire.
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