!941 to 1961 CMBR Measurement
Floor Location : M 054 D
The detailed study of the Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation has a profound consequence on our understanding of the gravitational and cosmological evolution of our Universe. In this paper, I will review the data collected by the Canadian Astronomer Andrew McKellar in 1941, as well as data from two Bell Laboratory Engineers D.C. Hogg from 1959 and E.A. Ohm from 1961 to estimate the CMBR temperature as of 1961. I will compare these results to the Bell lab data from 1965. The modern measurement is T = (2.725 + 0.004) K.
The CMBR has a profound consequence on our understanding of the gravitational and cosmological evolution of our Universe. Much of our understanding of the large-scale gravitational structure and evolution of our universe is directly tied to our detailed study and understanding of the CMBR.
I became interested in the CMBR when I read a 2009 paper from the Canadian Undergraduate Physics Journal  which included a section at the end of the paper that made mention of the Canadian astronomer Andrew McKellar and his 1941 measurement of the ambient temperature of deep space, as well as a recommendation that the Canadian physicist Dr. Jim Peebles ought to be awarded a Nobel Prize in Physics for his work on Cosmology. The CUPJ paper makes mention of the 1941 measurement by McKellar of interstellar carbon compounds in interstellar space.
At the time of its publication, the full implications of McKellar’s 1941 paper was not understood. Today it is almost universally acknowledged that Dr. McKellar had inadvertently discovered the Cosmic Microwave Background. It took several decades for astronomers to sort this fact out. The sad fact is, that there is no mention of Andrew McKellar’s work in the 1978 Nobel Physics addresses of Penzias and Wilson.