IRA is a member of the Joint Institute for VLBI in Europe (JIVE) and is one of the five funding members of the European VLBI Network (EVN), involving nowadays more than twenty antennas across Europe and Asia.
As part of the EVN, the 32-m antennas in Medicina and Noto perform observations within the global VLBI network for about 150 days a year. Also, following the EVN-Lite concept, interferometric experiments with smaller arrays of EVN telescopes are regularly executed.
The International VLBI Service for Astrometry and Geodesy (IVS) was established in 1998 to ensure coordination and promotion of VLBI-based astrometric and geodetic investigations. IRA is a member of the geodetic network since the beginning of IVS operations. Both the Medicina and Noto sites host co-locations with permanent Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) systems belonging to IGS (International GNSS Service) and EUREF Permanent GNSS Network networks. The two 32-m radio telescopes in Medicina and Noto regularly take part to the geodetic activities of the IVS network by joining 24-hours long observing experiments on a bi-weekly basis.
Figure A: Paul Boven/NASA Visible Earth
Figure B: IVS