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VLBA Dedication, 20 August 1993

The VLBA was dedicated on 20 August 1993. In this photo, U.S. Representative Joe Skeen (left), NRAO Director Paul Vanden Bout (right), and NRAO Associate Director Bob Brown (background) watch as Senator Pete Domenici scans the bar code below the word "Start" to initiate observations of W3OH. As the antennas began to point, lights on the displayed map lit up for each station, sequencing from east to west. There also was a monitor that showed RA/Dec and Az/El for each antenna, and those numbers started changing as the antennas slewed toward their target. Bob Greschke, VLBA chief operator at the time, wrote the software for the bar-code trick that triggered the map-light sequence and then put a message on his operator's screen so he could manually start the actual pointing sequence. Thanks to Dave Finley and Bob Greschke for caption information, to Peggy Perley, Jon Romney, and Craig Walker for suggestions on finding out about the observing target, and to Jim Ogle, who searched through the (still readable!) years old Exabyte backup tape to find the source observed for the occasion. vlba_dedication_bar-code-scan.jpg
VLBA Dedication, 20 August 1993
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