ASKAP welcomes ministerial visit to MRO
3 March 2014
On Saturday 1 March, Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop and UK Minister for Universities and Science David Willetts visited CSIRO's Murchison Radio-astronomy Observatory (MRO) in Western Australia to learn more about Australia's role in the international Square Kilometre Array project.
The MRO will be home to key components of the future telescope, including SKA-Survey and SKA-Low.
The group was accompanied by CSIRO Information Sciences Head Dave Williams, CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science Chief Lewis Ball and ASKAP Project Director Ant Schinckel, who provided a guided walk-around CSIRO's latest and newest radio telescope, the SKA precursor instrument known as ASKAP.
Minister Bishop was impressed by the projects underway at the MRO, including ASKAP and the Murchison Widefield Array (MWA), and noted the importance of collaboration within the SKA project.
"Australia and the United Kingdom, together with the other SKA partner countries, are working very hard to design and develop the telescope and the two SKA precursor telescopes already in place in Western Australia are already leading the way," said Ms Bishop.
The visiting UK Minister also expressed his enthusiasm about the progress of the SKA project, the headquarters of which are based in Manchester.
"Australia and the UK have a rich history of collaboration on major science projects and we value the relationship between our countries on this important project," Mr Willetts said, "This is a very exciting time for the Square Kilometre Array telescope and it is obvious when you visit the site that Australia shares my strong sense of anticipation and expectation for the project."
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