Welcome to the CSIRO Parkes Observatory

Coronavirus Update (4th July 2020): In response to the COVID-19 situation, our Parkes Observatory Visitors Centre, The Dish Café, outdoor viewing area and public toilets opened on 4 July 2020 with physical distancing and other precautions in place. For more information, please click on this link.


CSIRO’s Parkes radio telescope. Credit: David McClenaghan, CSIROParkes Observatory, just outside the central-west NSW town of Parkes, hosts the 64-metre Parkes radio telescope, one of the telescopes comprising CSIRO’s Australia Telescope National Facility.

An icon of Australian science, the Parkes radio telescope has been in operation since 1961 and continues to be at the forefront of astronomical discovery thanks to regular upgrades.

Astronomers from across Australia and around the world utilise the Parkes radio telescope to undertake world-class astronomical science. Affectionately known as ’the Dish’, the telescope operates 24 hours a day, every day of the year.

CSIRO’s Parkes telescope. Photo: David McClenaghan, CSIRO

Parkes: five decades of discovery Five decades after starting work, CSIRO’s Parkes telescope is still one of the world's leading radio telescopes. Read about the Parkes telescope's achievements.

Antennas of CSIRO’s ASKAP telescope. Photo: Ant Schinckel, CSIRO

Find out more
CSIRO, through its division of Astronomy and Space Science, operates the Dish. Find out more about CSIRO’s research into Understanding the Universe.