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Square Kilometre Array

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What future for the Parkes radio telescope amid the CSIRO cutbacks? CSIRO/Wayne England

Australia’s astronomy future in a climate of cutbacks

The future looks very bright for Australian radio astronomy but it was somewhat clouded earlier this year when CSIRO’s radio astronomy program took a dramatic hit in the Australian federal budget. CSIRO…
Three of the dishes used by the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder telescope. CSIRO/Terrace Photographers

The first images from ASKAP reveal slices through space

The first images from Australia’s Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder (ASKAP) telescope have given scientists a sneak peek at the potential images to come from the much larger Square Kilometre Array (SKA…

On the costs of mega-science projects

Today I awoke to the news that Germany has announced its intention to withdraw from the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) project. The SKA is an ambitious project that plans to build a radio telescope with…
We’ve stellar astronomy research programmes and need to keep them up. Flickr/xJason.Rogersx (image cropped)

To reach for the stars, Australia must focus on astronomy

AUSTRALIA 2025: How will science address the challenges of the future? In collaboration with Australia’s chief scientist Ian Chubb, we’re asking how each science discipline will contribute to Australia…
The antennas that capture low frequency radio waves at the Murchison Widefield Array radio telescope in Western Australia. AAP Image/Supplied by Dr Natasha Hurley-Walker

All the way with MWA: a big new telescope to unlock Big Bang secrets

Education minister Kim Carr today launched the Murchison Widefield Array, an important precursor telescope that will one…
The SKA is on the horizon, but how do we get from here to there? Pete Wheeler, ICRAR

Aspiration vs delivery: the long road to the Square Kilometre Array

The Square Kilometre Array (SKA) radio telescope has been on the cards since the early 1990s. It took until May of last year to find out where it will be built – in South Africa, Australia and New Zealand…
Ingenious innovation of the ancient world does not cease to amaze. Tilemahos Efthimiadis

Antikythera to the SKA: lessons from the ancients

Modern humans may think they are clever, and each generation typically thinks it’s more intelligent than those that came before. Hence, it can be a shock to discover civilisations existing thousands of…
Advanced computational skills are required for day-to-day work in most areas of modern science. kodomut

How to teach science and computing in the age of big data

Earlier this week, Senator Chris Evans announced A$5 million worth of science communication grants for 63 projects as part of the Unlocking Australia’s Potential program. We were successful in getting…
Everyone’s getting a slice of the SKA, whichever way you cut it. swishphotos

Science vs politics in the SKA decision: the winner was …

Late last week, the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) board chairman, John Womersley, announced that the future telescope will have more than one home: Australia/New Zealand and South Africa. The announcement…
Hosting part of the Square Kilometre Array is a victory for Africa, but much work is yet to be done. EPA/SKATelescope.com

Astronomy for Africa – the SKA will lead to ‘brain gain’

On Friday, we learned that South Africa and Australia/New Zealand will jointly host the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) radio telescope, rather than the facility going to just one of the bids. The split-site…
SKA infrastructure will be concentrated in South Africa with some receivers to be placed in Australia and New Zealand. Dr Nadeem Oozeer

Splitting the SKA – why a dual-site setup is a win for everyone

The Square Kilometre Array (SKA) is a concept that’s been slowly growing and evolving since 1991. But last night (AEST) this ambitious project took a giant leap towards reality with the announcement of…
The Square Kilometre Array will build on existing infrastructure, such as the KAT-7 array in South Africa. Dr Nadeem Oozeer

The Square Kilometre Array finally has a home (or two)

And so, the universe can breathe again. After a meeting of members at Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport last night (AEST), the International SKA Organisation has announced that the world’s largest radio telescope…
An artist’s conception of the Square Kilometre Array … which could live in South Africa or Australia/New Zealand. SKA

The SKA decision has been delayed … so what are the judges looking for?

The battle for the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) radio telescope is heating up. The SKA board was scheduled to choose a site – South Africa or Australia and New Zealand – earlier this year but a decision…
When a black hole devours a nearby star, bright gamma-ray flashes can result. Mark Garlick (University of Warwick)

Death of a star: how radio waves can capture a cosmic obituary

Some 3.8 billion years ago a star in the constellation of Draco wandered a little too close to a nearby black hole. The star was violently torn apart by the black hole’s tidal forces, creating two massive…
Are CSIRO’s ASKAP antennas in Boolardy a precursor to greater things? By Ant Schinckel, CSIRO

Hip hip hooray for the (Aussie?) Square Kilometre Array

We know a lot about what the universe looks like and how it works. But what we’ve been able to figure out about the cosmos is dwarfed by all the things we don’t know. How do galaxies, stars and planets…

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