Navigation Instructions

The telescope design section of this project is broken down into telescope design modules. It can be easily navigated through with the use of the side navigation bar. As of now, we only have the horn design up, but check back later for more designs. For each lesson there are multiple resources for the user: Along with the step-by-step instructions on this page, there is also a YouTube video presentation.

Horn and Waveguide Materials

- 4: 36” x 48” Double walled cardboard sheets.
- 75 square feet: Aluminum Foil.
- Hot Glue Gun with Hot Glue.
- Tape.
- Aluminum Foil Tape.
- X-acto Knife.

Probe Materials

For this section you can either buy the pieces individually or in packages online for more convenience.
Individual Pieces
- 2: Gold plated nuts.
- 1: Gold plated locking washer.
- 1: 7.5cm by 3.5cm Aluminum plate. Preferabliy .05" thick. (Scrap metal from local store)
- 1: Coaxial Panel Mount Connector with Bulkhead Nut and Solder Cup Terminal SMA Male to Female Right Angle 90-Degree Adapter Gold Plated.
- 1: Low noise amplifier.
- 1: 6.3cm Copper wire.
Packages from Online
- Wlaniot SMA Female Connector SMA Coaxial Panel Mount Connector with Bulkhead Nut and Solder Cup Terminal 5pcs
- 1: 7.5cm by 3.5cm Aluminum plate. Preferabliy .05" thick. (Scrap metal from local store)
- SMA Connectors
- SMA Right Angle Connectors
- Low Noise Amplifier
- 6.3cm Copper wire.

Constructing the Horn

In our Low Frequency Cosmology lab at Arizona State University, we used top of the line software to optimize our telescope horn to observe the 21 cm line.
Horn optimized
This image shows our final optimized dimesions for the horn according to highest gain
We tried many shapes and designs, but found that the parameters listed below worked best for us. As always, we encourage you to test your own design, but for ease in this project you can use the template we provide.

Build Your Horn

The picture below shows the horn dimensions that will be cut out on the cardboard sheets. Make sure to sketch out your deign with a pencil and follow the saying "Measure twice, cut once" to insure your dimensions are as accurate as possible.

Download Etcher

Next, we need to line the cut out cardboard pieces with the aluminum foil. We only need the inside of the horn to be covered with foil, since that's the part where all of the light particles will be focused into. Only one side of each piece needs to be covered. We used double sided tape and, glue sticks to get our foil to stick to the cardboard. Try and avoid covering the outside of the foil with any adhesive or tape, because this will bring our reflectivity down.
Next we will need to use our hot glue gun to glue the edges of the horn together. Make sure to fold the waveguide edges shown in the schmeatic above so that it created a box on the bottom of the horn. Line the outside edges with hot glue and have someone else help you place the cardboard stabily on the glue. We propped up our pieces and let them set over night. We did this piece by piece to insure that our design would be stable. This process took us about three days total to allow every glued piece to set well.
Now that all the pieces were glued together, we took our aluminum tape and lined the inside edges of the horn with it so that no glue was showing. Again we are wanting a completly reflective and conductive surfice so that energy transfer from the photons and electrons can effectively travel to the waveguide and probe.
Below is a photo of what your horn will look like constructed.


Our horn build is finished and it's time to start hooking up our electrical compenents. Use a 1/4" drill bit to drill a hole in the middle of the aluminum plate. Our SMA connector is going to fit right into this hole and the aluminum plate is used to stabilize it, because the cardboard alone would be too flimsy. Drill a 1/4" hole into the center of the top of the waveguide and 7cm from the back, as shown below. Next, we will need to soulder the copper wire to the solder cup.
In this order, we will connect the probe parts to the inside of the waveguide:
1.) Put the SMA connector section of the Copper wire hook up through the aluminum plate.
2.) Place the gold plate, gold plated locking washer, and gold nut on top of the SMA in that order.
3.) Push the SMA through the cardboard hole.
4.)Screw on the male to female 90 degree SMA connector.
5.)Screw on the male to male SMA connector.
Next we will start connecting our Low Noise Amplifiers and our filter. Refer to the schmeatic below to see in what order to connect the rest of the components.
Horn Hookup
Congratulations, you are ready to move on to the Software section of the project!