We've been busy here at ICRAR - too busy to send out a newsletter since March! Catch up on all our news below.
International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research
In this issue:
Welcome to the September issue of ICRAR's eNewsletter. We've had a lot going on since our last issue! Our most exciting piece of news we suspect you've already heard - the SKA is coming to Australia! The official announcement from the SKA (that also explains what the SKA will be like split over two continents) is a good place for more info. Our second most exciting piece of news is that ICRAR is a finalist in three categories of the WA Science Awards, we'll be keeping our fingers crossed until they're announced on the 11th of October.  We also celebrated the first birthday of theSkyNet last week, thank you to everyone that has supported our distributed computing project in its first year.
We've also featured in the news lately with some great research by PhD Student Morag Scrimgeour, who's been working out how smooth the Universe is using the WiggleZ galaxy survey, and Dr Aaron Robotham who has found the first twin to the Milky Way - Magellanic Clouds and all.
Some of ICRAR's researchers have been testing some new toys whilst working with Intel, Professor Peter Quinn has been added to the worldwide list of 'Who's Who', and theSkyNet is set to take over more of the Universe with an expansion into optical wavelengths.
You can also catch up on anzSKA news through their latest newsletter, read about the new SKA Director-General (who is leaving CSIRO to take up the top job) and read an interview with Dr Natasha Hurley-Walker who works on the Murchison Widefield Array.
Finishing up the newsletter we've got quirky science facts on toilet doors and an astrophotography showcase from the successful Astrofest extravaganza that we held in March.

See you next time,


ICRAR's star to shine at WA Science Awards

We're very proud to say that ICRAR Director Professor Peter Quinn is a finalist for WA Scientist of the Year, Deputy Director Professor Steven Tingay is a finalist for WA Science Ambassador of the Year and the ICRAR project theSkyNet is a finalist for Science Engagement Initiative of the Year. The winners are announced at an award dinner on the 11th of October. Read more about our finalists at the WA Science Awards Page (linked above).
The WiggleZ Survey at the AAT.

WiggleZ confirms the Big Picture of the Universe

We know that stars group together to form galaxies, galaxies clump to make clusters and clusters gather to create structures known as superclusters. At what scale does this structure stop?

The Milky Way now has a twin (or two)

Research presented last month at the International Astronomical Union General Assembly in Beijing has found the first group of galaxies that is just like ours, a rare sight in the local Universe.

Astronomical computers could have Intel inside

Last month researchers from ICRAR joined Intel at the launch of the new “many-core” processor called Xeon Phi that could help solve the SKA data challenge.
theSkyNet Turns One!
theSkyNet turns one! Happy Birthday to theSkyNet! We turned one year old on the 13th of September 2012. We achieved so much in our first year, all thanks to the dedicated team and our generous members.

Other ICRAR News

New Staff Members

New staff members and postgraduate students have joined ICRAR since the last edition of our eNewsletter:
  • Dr Peter Curran, Postdoctoral Researcher;
  • Angela Dunleavy, Administration Coordinator;
  • Rosalina Stone, Administration Assistant;
  • Lara DeLacour, Intellectual Property Specialist;
  • Ramesh Bhat, Curtin Research Fellow;
  • Tahereh Rashnavadi, PhD;
  • Samuel Oronsaye, PhD;
  • Thomas Russell, PhD;
  • Sarah Bruzzese, PhD;
  • Rebecca Lange, PhD;
  • Cameron Yozin-Smith, PhD;
  • Steven Murray, PhD.
We wish them all a warm welcome to ICRAR.

Researcher Interview

Dr Natasha Hurley-Walker

Dr Natasha Hurley-Walker

Dr Natasha Hurley-Walker is working on the Murchison Widefield Array, looking for supernova remnants (the leftovers when a star reaches the end of its life and explodes) and helping get the telescope into peak condition. Her love of Sci-Fi helped nudge her into astronomy, and now she gets to call herself Super Science Fellow at ICRAR, but unfortunately no cape!

anzSKA News

anzSKA Newsletter 34

The latest issue of the anzSKA newsletter is available from the anzSKA website with news on Australian and New Zealand SKA work. There's also an ASKAP update newsletter available.

Australia – New Zealand Square Kilometre Array site is already producing world-class astrophysics

A news article from April outlining some of the great work happening at the WA SKA site.

Australia to share in world’s largest telescope

You've probably heard the news! Read our announcement from May that the SKA would be shared between both candidate sites, since then we've been celebrating and working hard preparing.

International SKA News

New Director-General for the SKA

Congratulations to Dr Phil Diamond who will be leaving his role as head of CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science to head up the SKA! During Dr Diamond's sabattical with us in 2010 we talked to him about the SKA and astronomy.

Sweden joins the SKA organisation

In June Sweden joined Australia, Canada, China, Italy, the Netherlands, New Zealand, South Africa and the United Kingdom as a full member country of the SKA.

SKA Decision Statement

Read the SKA Members Statement from May announcing and explaining the decision to build the SKA at both candidate sites in Australia-New Zealand and Southern Africa.

ICRAR Education Update

Dinkum science on dunny doors

During National Science Week in August you may have been lucky enough to spot one of our science posters around Perth or Darwin. All the posters and more fun science facts are also on the Science is Amazing page.

TheSkyNet set to conquer more of our Universe

In its ever-expanding quest to process astronomy data and discover our Universe, theSkyNet has joined forces with the Pan-STARRS1 Science Consortium (PS1SC) to probe other galaxies beyond our own Milky Way.

WA Astrophotography Showcased at Astrofest

Astrofest 2012 was a great success, with over 3,500 people admiring the night sky and learning about astronomy, with the astrophotography one of the highlights.

Other ICRAR Education News

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(+61 8) 6488 7766

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