TABLE OF CONTENTS
A Guide to the James N. Douglas Papers
Born in Dallas in 1935, James Douglas earned his Ph.D. at Yale University in 1961 and worked as an assistant professor at Yale until 1965. At that time he moved to the University of Texas at the urging of former Yale professor and UT McDonald Observatory director Harlan J. Smith.
Douglas was a noted scholar of Jupiter’s radio emissions and he collaborated in this work with F. Arakel Bozyan, one of Douglas’ students. Douglas also constructed a novel type of telescope intended to survey most of the northern hemisphere sky. Variously referred to as the Bandwidth Synthesis Interferometer or the White Light Interferometer, the instrument made use of a wide range of observing wavelengths to mimic the effect of extended antenna elements. The UT Radio Astronomy Observatory was situated near Marfa in West Texas, not far from the McDonald (optical) Observatory.
The radio survey resulted in the discovery of nearly 100,000 radio sources, along with basic data, such as the sources' positions and flux densities, as well as some information on angular structures. The measured positions of the radio sources were accurate enough to identify thousands of them with optical objects, primarily very distant and luminous radio galaxies and quasars whose light and radio waves were emitted when the Universe was a fraction of its current size, and many were subsequently observed spectroscopically at McDonald Observatory.
(Adapted from the UT faculty memorial resolution for James N. Douglas)
The Douglas Papers consist of Dr. Douglas’ professional correspondence, proposals, project files, observed data, and notebooks dating to his early years at Yale and continuing through his career at the University of Texas.
This collection is stored off-site. Contact repository in advance for retrieval.
James N. Douglas Papers, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.