Jodrell Bank bids for Unesco World Heritage status

Rodiano Bonacci
Ottobre 13, 2017

Jodrell Bank Observatory has been selected as the latest United Kingdom candidate for World Heritage status.

The staff at the observatory is now giving the final touch to nomination papers that will be submitted to UNESCO in January 2018.

A World Heritage Site is a place (area or a landmark) that has been recognized by the UNESCO as an important site for collective interests of humanity.

Such sites usually hold some historical, scientific, cultural, or other significance and are legally protected by worldwide treaties.

Professor Teresa Anderson, director of the Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre, said: "We have been preparing the case for World Heritage Site inscription for some years now, so it's absolutely fantastic to reach this milestone". And according to latest reports, UNESCO has accepted its candidature for World Heritage status.

The observatory in the county of Cheshire, dominated by the iconic Lovell Telescope, is run by the University of Manchester.

The observatory has just celebrated the 60th anniversary of the Lovell Telescope, which when it was completed in 1957, was the world's largest telescope with the dish spanning a diameter of more than 76 meters, and is now more powerful than as an icon of science and engineering. This rich history is still being written with the execution of state-of-the art astronomical research programmes on the Lovell Telescope and the e-MERLIN array of national facility radio telescopes, plus our hosting of the global headquarters of the Square Kilometre Array'. Sir Lovell was a radio astronomer and was keen to probe cosmic rays after completion of his work on radar during the WWII.

The observatory is also used by Professor Brian Cox, 48, the University's advanced fellow of particle physics in the School of Physics and Astronomy, on his popular shows. A project to make a gallery narrating the story of radio astronomy is also in progress.

Its team tracked the flight of the Soviet Union's Sputnik 1, the first-ever artificial satellite. Every year around 2 lakh visitors come to the Discovery Centre to see the famous site.

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