Naked Astronomy

Naked Astronomy episode

Mon, 25th Mar 2013

Radio Astronomy in the Australian Outback

The Murchison Widefield Array (c) The Murchison Widefield Array

The SKA will soon be the world's most sensitive radio telescope, able to view some of the most distant objects ever seen. In a special edition of Naked Astronomy this month, we follow Perth-based astronomer Kirsten Gottschalk on a visit to one of the two sites where it will be built, hundreds of kilometres from civilisation in the Western Australian outback. Kirsten also catches up with progress on the two precursor instruments - the Murchison Widefield Array and the Australian SKA Pathfinder - which are already being constructed on the site.

Thanks to CSIRO for allowing us to record at the Murchison Radio Astronomy Observatory, to Kirsten Gottschalk of the International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research (ICRAR) for taking time out from her visit to speak to us, and to Curtin University, who lead the Murchison Widefield Array.

 

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In this edition of Naked Astronomy

 

  • The Murchison Widefield Array (c) The Murchison Widefield Array

    00:00 - Introduction

    Kirsten Gottschalk heads out on a journey to the Murchison Widefield Array

  • Square Kilometre Array (c) Swinburne University

    01:55 - Science with the SKA

    Dominic Ford and Kirsten Gottschalk explain the science which will be undertaken with the Square Kilometre Array

  • ASKAP antennas (c) Ant Schinckel, CSIRO.

    07:16 - Precursors to the SKA

    Dominic Ford and Kirsten Gottschalk explain the precursors to the SKA, the Murchison Widefield Array and the Australian SKA Pathfinder

  • The Murchison Widefield Array (c) The Murchison Widefield Array

    15:29 - Radio astronomy with new detectors

    Dominic Ford and Kirsten Gottschalk explain how the precuror instruments can be used for radio astronomy

  • The Murchison Widefield Array (c) The Murchison Widefield Array

    20:28 - Processing the SKA's observations

    Dominic Ford and Kirsten Gottschalk explain how the Murchison Widefield Array and the Australian SKA Pathfinder handle radio interference

  • ASKAP antennas (c) Ant Schinckel, CSIRO.

    23:50 - Science with the precursor instruments

    Dominic Ford and Kirsten Gottschalk explain what science can be undertaken with the Murchison Widefield Array and the SKA Pathfinder

  • SKA Radio Scanner (c) rogerconroy

    27:29 - Hosting the SKA

    Dominic Ford and Kirsten Gottschalk describe how the two countries to host the SKA were chosen

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