Get involved in ICRAR’s research through citizen science programs. Lend your computer and your skills to look at distant galaxies, search for black holes, and help find radio sources.
Our researchers are involved in one current citizen science project:
AstroQuest are looking for volunteer astronomers to study crowded images of galaxies and work out which light is coming from which galaxy. All you need is a computer and the internet.
Astronomers have been looking deep into the universe and surveying millions of galaxies. But to help find discoveries in these surveys we need to carefully identify the boundary of every galaxy. Computers are pretty good at this, but they don’t always get it right. That’s where you come in! We need your help to inspect each galaxy and make sure we have the right result.
AstroQuest is the successor to our past citizen science project Galaxy Explorer (see below).
Our past citizen science projects, now closed for further contributions:
Classify a galaxy far, far away…
Galaxy explorer citizen scientists took a trip to some of the furthest reaches of our Universe to help Australian scientists understand how galaxies grow and evolve. Read a wrap up of Galaxy Explorer’s science.
Black holes are found at the centre of most, if not all, galaxies. The bigger the galaxy, the bigger the black hole and the more sensational the effect it can have on the host galaxy. These supermassive black holes drag in nearby material, growing to billions of times the mass of our sun and occasionally producing spectacular jets of material traveling nearly as fast as the speed of light. These jets often can’t be detected in visible light, but are seen using radio telescopes. Citizen scientists teamed up with astronomers to find these jets and match them to the galaxy that hosts them. radio.galaxyzoo.org
Your computer is bored. It has spare computing power nearly all the time that could be used to do something cool. So why not let it?
By connecting 100s and 1000s of computers together through the Internet, it’s possible to simulate a single machine capable of doing some pretty amazing stuff. That’s what theSkyNet was all about – using your spare computing power to process radio astronomy data. TheSkyNet had over 30,000 volunteers processing data from the Pan-STARRS1 telescope in Hawaii, and Radio Astronomy data from Australia.