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last change 2007 March 23, H. Ínel
Solar Radio Physics - Research Branch I de
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Radio Observatory - History

Early History of Solar Radio Observations at Potsdam

In the years 1893 - 1896 two scientists at Astrophysikalisches Observatorium Potsdam (still under its founding director Prof. Vogel), Johannes Wilsing and Julius Scheiner tried to detect the expected solar radio emission without using electronics. They applied the so-called "Fritter" effect - the decline of the Ohmic resistance between two wires in not too close contact due to the incidence of electromagnetic radiation. In contrast with other early attempts these experiments are well documented. There are two published papers (in Astronomische Nachrichten August 1896; and in Wiedemanns Annalen, also 1896) carefully describing the experiments carried out on the Telegrafenberg in Potsdam.

A scetch of the early instrumentation by W. Voigt (see also "Die Sterne, 65. Band, Heft 4, S. 251-252").
The "... first properly published experiment in radio astronomy ..." (W.T. Sullivan III, in Classics in Radio Astronomy, Reidel Dordrecht, 1982, p. 145) is available in the English translation of the original paper from Ann. der Physik und Chemie 59, p. 782-792 (1896) in W.T. Sullivan III (1982, p. 147-157).
Here, we give some pages of both papers from the original German written papers: