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Homework Help: Radio Telescope at Arecibo, Puerto Rico

  1. Apr 4, 2009 #1
    Minimum Resolution Angle Problem

    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    The radio telescope at Arecibo, Puerto Rico, has a reflecting spherical bowl of 295 m diameter. Radio signals can be received and emitted at various frequencies with appropriate antennae at the focal point of the reflecting bowl. At a frequency of 300 MHz, what is the angle between two stars that can barely be resolved?

    (The answer is supposed to be in mrads)

    2. Relevant equations



    3. The attempt at a solution

    I tried converting the frequency to wavelength, and then plugging the wavelength, which I found to be 1m, and the given information into the first equation that I wrote down. The answer that I entered, .004136, wasn't correct, so I'm not sure if it's a wrong unit conversion, or I'm doing this wrong. First off, is the answer that I found in degrees? If it is, then would I need to convert it to radians? Secondly, what do they mean by mrads? Is it milli-radians?

    Thank you.
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2009
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 5, 2009 #2


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    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    The answer will be in radians. Yes mrads means milliradians.
  4. Apr 5, 2009 #3
    Solved it. Thank you Kurdt.
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