|14th of March 2017|
|One woman's role in designing the world's largest radio telescope|
|by Gabby Russell (CSIRO)|
|CSIRO Blog by Helen Sim:
The Square Kilometre Array, or SKA, is a next-generation radio telescope that will be vastly more sensitive than the best present-day instruments. It will give astronomers remarkable insights into the formation of the early Universe, including the emergence of the first stars, galaxies and other structures. Consisting of thousands of antennas linked together by high bandwidth optical fibre, the SKA will require new technologies and progress in fundamental engineering. The telescope's design and development is being led by the international SKA Organisation.Construction is due to start in 2018 and around the globe 11 groups, all with members from several countries, are working feverishly on different aspects of the project to make it come together. |
Australia has a presence in several of these groups, and indeed leads two of them. Our very own Mia Baquiran (pictured above) is one of the researchers working on this exciting project. She spends her days in a quiet, ground-floor office in a leafy suburb of Sydney, working on systems that will go into the international SKA radio telescope. Mia's role in this `moon-shot' project concerns a telescope called `SKA Low', an assembly of more than a hundred thousand low-frequency antennas that will be housed at CSIRO's Murchison Radio-astronomy Observatory in Western Australia.