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Arthur (Antenna No 1), Goonhilly

1130 of 1170 nominations


Arthur (Antenna No 1), Goonhilly

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Arthur (Antenna No 1), Goonhilly

Goonhilly Satellite Earth Station in Cornwall is the largest and oldest satellite station in the world. It is an international communications centre sending and receiving satellite signals to and from every corner of the globe. Every minute millions of international phone calls, e-mails and TV broadcasts are routed through here. Arthur is the name of Goonhilly’s oldest antenna and is the largest active dish on the site. The dish was named Arthur when Goonhilly opened in 1962 and all subsequent satellite dishes have been named after characters in Celtic legend. Arthur weighs a massive 1,118 tonnes but is surprisingly sprightly for such an elderly (in technological terms) and weighty gentleman. In order to be able to track fast-moving low orbit satellites, Arthur can turn a complete circle in under 3 minutes!

Image: Topfoto.co.uk


Your comments

Built in 1962 to track the Telstar satellite, it remains in operational service to this day, and is a grade II listed building

David Hay

i read from somewhere that arthur is not working any more now, and that it has been replaced.is it true?

Goonhilly was Britain's entry into the brave new world of satellite communications, one of the first satcoms earth station sites in the world, and was the springboard for the UK's pre-eminent position as the communications hub of the world -- all started by Goonhilly Antenna No 1 in the 1960s.
Paul Branch

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My nomination is the garden shed.