Portrait of Karl Jansky
Karl Guthe Jansky was born in Norman, Oklahoma on October 22, 1905 and graduated with a degree in physics from the University of Wisconsin. He joined the staff of the Bell Telephone Laboratories in Holmdel, New Jersey in 1928. While hunting for radio static for Bell Labs, Jansky made the surprise discovery of radio waves coming from the center of our Milky Way Galaxy. Jansky wanted to investigate the radio waves from the Milky Way Galaxy in more detail. He proposed to Bell Labs to build a 100 foot (30 meter) diameter dish antenna. But Bell Labs had the answer they wanted about static: the static was not a problem for transatlantic radio communication. Jansky was assigned to another project and did no more radio astronomy. He died on February 14, 1950.