Visitor's Guide to the Murchison Radio-astronomy Observatory (MRO) and
Boolardy Station Accommodation Facility

Vehicle departing the MRO site


General Information

The Murchison Radio-astronomy Observatory (MRO) is the location of CSIRO's ASKAP project and a number of other innovative radio astronomy projects including MWA. The MRO is approximately 370km from Geraldton and is centred on Boolardy Station, a pastoral grazing property.

Access to the MRO is limited in order to maintain radio quietness of the MRO, enable compliance with existing agreements, including the ILUA, and to limit the impact/interruption on staff carrying out work at the MRO.

All persons visiting the Boolardy Accommodation Facility or the MRO (including CBIS staff and affiliates) must complete a Heritage Induction. This induction is carried out by the CSIRO Aboriginal Liaison Officer based in Geraldton at the MRO Support Facility (MSF). Heritage Inductions are valid for 2 years.

All activities at the MRO and Boolardy are to be conducted as per the CSIRO HSE Risk Management Procedure and HSE Risk Management Guideline’s or as per the relevant Site License Agreements. Groups working onsite must have adequate first-aid training.

All activities at the MRO and Boolardy are to be conducted as per the CSIRO MRO/Boolardy Radio Emissions Management Plan.

All persons driving to/from Geraldton and the MRO or Boolardy should have appropriate 4WD training.

Visitors are advised to dress appropriately for the climate. Summer temperatures regularly exceed 45°C (113°F) in the shade. Long sleeved, lightweight shirts and long trousers are strongly recommended as is a wide brim hat. Visitors must supply their own sunscreen.

Smoking is not permitted in any CSIRO building or vehicle.

Fuel is not available from the MRO/Boolardy without prior arrangement with CSIRO. Unleaded petrol (ULP) is not kept or available at either the MRO or Boolardy. The closest supplies are at Mullewa.

Visitors are advised to bring sufficient supplies of drinking water for their use whilst at the MRO. Supplies of drinking water at Boolardy are limited.

No accommodation is available at the MRO. Staying overnight is prohibited.

Boolardy Accommodation Facility

To support the MRO, CSIRO operates the Boolardy Accommodation Facility for CSIRO staff and affiliates who need to work at either the MRO or Boolardy. The accommodation facility is located approximately 40 kms from the MRO.

All of the accommodation is in dongas (demountable/transportable units). There are seven dongas each with four individual units, and one family donga, resulting in 29 accommodation units in total. The dongas are furnished with a king single bed, small fridge, fixed furnishings and an ensuite bathroom. The family donga has two bedrooms, living room and ensuite. Each room is supplied with linen, towels, pillows, internet connection, alarm clock, soap, insect spray and a torch.

The common areas consist of:

  • -  laundry (laundry powder is provided);

  • -  gym room;

  • -  office building (one open-plan office + one meeting room);

  • -  wittenoom cottage (visitor recreation area with two bathrooms, kitchenette, First Aid room, open-plan living area, mud room);

  • -  canteen (two meals areas + kitchen + outdoor shaded deck area);

Fully catered dining options are available (hot breakfast, morning tea, lunch and dinner plus juice and coffee/tea).

The accommodation facility does not carry supplies of alcohol or a licence to supply or sell liquor.

Pets are not to be taken to site. Registered Guide Dogs may be taken to site with prior notification.

The Station Manager's residence (Boolardy Homestead) and adjacent farm buildings do not form part of the Boolardy Accommodation facility and are not available for access by visitors to the site. The Station Manager and his family are not CSIRO employees.

Booking your accommodation

The new online accommodation is now available at http://www.atnf.csiro.au/observers/accomm/

From now on, use this form to book all  visits to the Boolardy Accommodation Facility, the MRO and to the MRO Support Facility in Geraldton. Note that confirmation of your accommodation arrangements for Boolardy is not to be taken as authorisation for the proposed work activities nor as confirmation for the use of on-site staff resources (see Visitor Work Flow for more information).

The timeline for booking accommodation remains unchanged (ideally 2 weeks in advance). This is driven primarily by the schedule of the weekly food deliveries to the Murchison region. We are working towards taking  bookings on short notice (less than 2 weeks in advance) by providing alternate meal arrangements at Boolardy (e.g. Pickup of frozen food-packs from Geraldton, frozen dinners available at MRO). In the mean time, please try to book your arrangements as early as possible.

If you need to make any changes to a booking that is already in the system, then please contact Vicki Drazenovic or a member of her ATNF Operations Scientific Visitor Services Team  and they will make the necessary changes for you and your group (including alerting catering staff at Boolardy). Alternatively, visitors can email mro-bookings_at_atnf.csiro.au.

 

Contact Information

MRO Control Building - 08 9923 7900

Boolardy Kitchen - 08 9923 7800

 

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