Sir Bernard Lovell has been described by Sir Patrick Moore as the 'Isaac Newton of radio astronomy'. After his World War II service, Lovell founded Jodrell Bank Observatory in Cheshire, England, and oversaw the construction of what was then the world's largest steerable radio telescope (and remains one of the largest). This telescope, later named the Lovell Telescope in his honour, was used to track Soviet and American missions during the Space Race.
Lovell will be remembered as a pioneer of radio astronomy, which provides important clues about the Universe's history.
Image: Bernard Lovell (credit: Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics, University of Manchester)
The 'Isaac Newton of radio astronomy' builds a great telescope.
A Russian probe sends back the first pictures taken from the Moon's surface.
Luna 9, the first Moon probe to achieve a soft landing and send back photos of the lunar surface, caught the West by surprise in 1966. The Russian spacecraft's data transmissions were intercepted by Jodrell Bank Observatory, and the pictures were published in a British newspaper before they were published in Russia.
The Russians crash-land the first Moon probe.
On 13 September 1959, the Russians triumphed with Luna 2 (also known as Lunik 2), the first Moon probe, which was intentionally crashed into the lunar surface. The mission was tracked from Jodrell Bank in the UK.
Patrick Moore speaks to Lovell.
In 1979 Sir Patrick Moore asked the great radio astronomer Sir Bernard Lovell whether he thought we could ever contact other advanced civilisations.
Patrick Moore explains the basics of radio astronomy.
Sir Patrick Moore explains the basics of radio astronomy while on a visit to Jodrell Bank Observatory.
He faced great challenges building the first telescope at Jodrell Bank.
Sir Bernard Lovell explains to Patrick Moore the great difficulties he faced building the large radio telescope at Jodrell Bank. When it was finished in 1957, the telescope, now called the Lovell Telescope, was the largest steerable dish radio telescope in the world.
Sir Alfred Charles Bernard Lovell, OBE, FRS (31 August 1913 – 6 August 2012) was an English physicist and radio astronomer. He was the first Director of Jodrell Bank Observatory, from 1945 to 1980.