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The design and operating characteristics of a maser radiometer for use in radio astronomy at 3-cm wavelength are discussed. The operating system which is described has a bandwidth of 5.5 mc and an input noise temperature, including background radiation into the antenna, of about 85Â°K. An rms fluctuation level of about 0.04Â°K is attained using an averaging time of 5 seconds. A discussion of the factors determining the sensitivity of such devices is presented.