An ASKAP antenna at the Murchison Radio-astronomy Observatory. Image Credit: Ant Schinckel, CSIRO.




Quarterly update: May 2013

Collaborative Research Infrastructure Scheme

On the 20th May 2013, the government accepted AAL's Implementation Plan for the Astronomy National Research Infrastructure project, which was awarded $3.474 million over CY2013-14 under the Collaborative Research Infrastructure Scheme (CRIS). Acceptance of the CRIS Implementation Plan triggered the first payment instalment, which will flow to AAL via Swinburne University (our CRIS partner higher education provider). We are currently negotiating subcontracts with organisations responsible for undertaking CRIS sub-projects.

  • Australian SKA Pathfinder (CSIRO)
  • Murchison Widefield Array (Curtin University)
  • Australian Gemini Office (AAO)
  • PLATO observatories at Dome A, Antarctica (UNSW)
  • gSTAR supercomputing support (Swinburne University of Technology)

Giant Magellan Telescope Organisation (GMTO) Board Appointment

The GMTO Founders appointed Warrick Couch to its Board on 3rd April 2013. We congratulate Warrick, who joins Mark McAuley as AAL's representatives, along with Matthew Colless and Roger Franzen, as ANU's representatives on the GMTO Board.

Antarctic Astronomy Australia-China activities 

2013ChineseDelegation 460AAL meets with the delegation from China, led by the Vice-President of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

In February 2013 a Science Planning Workshop was held at Swinburne University of Technology to refine and consolidate the AST3 science cases as identified under AAL's MoU with the Division of Basic Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences (DBRCAS) on Antarctic astronomy. The meeting was attended by 15 Australian (representing 6 Australian institutions) and 3 Chinese astronomers. A science plan, including and implementation timeline, was derived from this meeting and presented to DIISRTE in March 2013. AAL and Swinburne were happy to host a concurrent visit by the Chinese Academy of Sciences, led by their Vice-President, to discuss the future collaboration between Australia and China.

Following the recent return of the first observational data from the AST3-1 telescope from Dome-A, Antarctica, the Chinese are holding their second AST3 collaboration meeting in Tengchong, China at the end of May. There will be strong representation by Australian astronomers at this meeting. The first oversight group meeting of the AAL-DBRCAS collaboration will be held in conjunction with this meeting.

AAL on Twitter

AAL is now on Twitter! Follow us at @AstroAustralia to keep up to date with AAL news and activities.

2013 AGM

The next AAL AGM will be held on 19th November 2013 in Melbourne (location TBD). All Member representatives are asked to note this date.