Noto VLBI Antenna (Noto)
Core Data
Hosting Legal Entity
National Institute for Astrophysics
Centro da Renna, INAF - Istituto di Radioastronomia, Noto, PO: 96017, Sicily (Italy)
Type Of RI
Coordinating Country
Current Status:
Operational since 1988
Scientific Description
Mission and objectives
The Noto Section of the Italian Institute of Radioastronomy of Italian National Institute of Astrophysics (INAF) is an independent research site. Its radiotelescope was completed in 1988 and since that time it has performed astronomical, geodetic and space science observations.The radiotelescope of 32m in diameter is one of the large infrastructures of INAF, designed to work within the International VLBI networks for both Astronomy and Geodesy. It is a node of the European VLBI Network (EVN,, the Joint Institute for Very Long Baseline Interferometry in Europe (JIVE, and the International VLBI Service for Geodesy and Astrometry (IVS, A qualifying capability of this antenna within Europe is the primary mirror equipped with active surface, i.e. 256 computer-controlled panels which can be adjusted to compensate surface deformations. Moreover, it is equipped with a high velocity fibre optics connection, which allows for data transfer in real time (eVLBI).

RI Keywords
Single-dish, Radio telescope, VLBI, Radioastronomy, Digital-backend
RI Category
Scientific Domain
Earth and Environmental Sciences
Physics, Astronomy, Astrophysics and Mathematics
Information Science and Technology
ESFRI Domain
Physical Sciences and Engineering

The commitment in VLBI networks (EVN, IVS) covers about 4 months per year (30%). About 10% of time is for observations in conjunction with the antenna in space RadioAstron (a project of the Russian Academy of Science) on the basis of an MoU. The remaining time (60%) is used for single-dish observations in continuum (blazar variability, monitoring of FERMI and PLANCK sources, large-scale surveys) and spectroscopy (masers OH, H2O, methanol) and for geodesy projects. A call for proposals is issued to the international community twice a year and proposals are evaluated on scientific merit by a Time Allocation Committee appointed by INAF. The observatory provides assistance through a staff of engineers and astronomers. The running costs are funded by INAF.

32m Radiotelescope

Fully steerable 32m radiotelescope equipped with cryogenic receivers. Radio receivers for VLBI (Very Long Baseline Interferometry) and single-dish. Frequency range covered by existing receivers is 300 MHz to 43 GHz Surface accuracy is 0.1 mm Pointing accuracy is about 10 arcsec. Single-dish observations are performed in continuum mode (including polarimetry) and spectroscopy. Back-ends include total power and digital spectrometers.

Additional Data
European VLBI Network (EVN)
International VLBI Service for Geodesy & Astrometry (IVS)