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Day 1

We started our day meeting each other and our supervisors, Ronniy and Kathryn. They took us on a tour of the Curtin division of ICRAR. First, we were given an introductory to astronomy and the work ICRAR does then, we talked to Kathryn about her studies on Peaked Spectral Sources and questioned her the whole time. Our group of 5 were split off into two groups, one of 3 and the other 2, the group of 2 spoke with Steve who explained the use of the supercomputer creating images from information gathered from the Murchison Wide Field Array (MWA). The image had to calibrated/cleaned up, as the information was gathered over 8 hours and the Earth’s rotation. The information was adjusted to counteract these problems. The group met up again for journal club, most of the students/researchers meet up to share any notices and occasionally have a presentation on one of their research and their findings. We had lunch and caught up with paperwork for our schools. We arrived at standard error where groups of astronomers met up to share problems, they encountered using the Python language and, if they had them, solutions. We were then split off into our two groups again and spoke to researchers who researched black holes. The groups met up for afternoon tea and went as one group to Nick, who is researching pulsars.

Day 2

We arrived at ICRAR UWA and met Greg, who took us on a tour of the building and safety procedures. He showed us a video by professor Brian Cox about Cosmology. After the video we spoke with Greg about our questions on the video and other cosmology related questions. We were taken to Kate, a masters graduate who is researching galaxies by observing them. We went to Journal club of UWA were, as the same as Curtin, many researchers meet up and share notices and their research. They spoke about a paper that explains how kinematics (movement) can be used to classify galaxies. Next we spoke about galactic fountains and how they were formed, and we finished off with talking about carbon emissions in the astronomy industry and what can be done to reduce our carbon emissions. We had our lunch and spoke with Assistant Professor Kevin who, told us all about the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) and his contribution to creating the program that helps to process the data that will be attained though the SKA. We finished our day talking to Philippa about how she’s got to where she was in her Master’s degree.

Day 3

We spoke to Lister who works with the MWA. He gave us a quick rundown on a lot of the terminology that relates to radio astronomy. We moved onto Kevin who works with a program that helps highlight galaxies so he can find the distances of them. He took us to a video conference with Swinburne where they shared the new iteration of the program and how to use it, after we got to use the program and find galaxies. Astro morning tea was introduced with a fun facts of science in the week then a long talk about SHARK, a simulation which was to find how galaxies are born. We talked to Elizabeth who had a general chat about how she got to where she was and what she recommends about university decisions. Brent talked to us about how he is searching for the stuff in between star’s gas molecules and how he got to where he is. Lastly, we had Sabrina explain SHARK in more simple terms so we could understand what they had said in Astro morning tea.

Day 4

Our day started with talking to the honors students about what it is like to be in an honors course. We were then taken to the engineering department where we were told about how the MWA works and how they fix it. We were taken on a tour of the engineering department and showed how they operate the MWA. We went to talk to Ben and Stefan about their research on radio galaxies. They were trying to start the research area as they found anomalies that had no reason for being there, so they are trying to figure out how to classify them and figure out any patterns. After lunch we were given our first and only task. We were given a set of observations where satellites zipped across the sky. Our task was to identify these satellites and their orbital period. The data we collected was to be used in the future by researchers. We finished off our day speaking to Jack and his team, researching the formation of the universe.

Day 5

Our final day started with us visiting the SPIRIT telescopes on the roof of the Physics building in UWA. Paul told us about the SPIRIT program and how the SPIRT works. We went back to the main building where we had morning tea with all the professors and students working at ICRAR. Luca took us to his office to show us his work on galaxies and how he finds the direction of their rotation. After finishing with Luca, we arrived at a student meet up called plot of the week. At plot of the week students present a plot from their research and afterwards we voted on which plot we thought was better, prettier, etc. After lunch we spoke to Adam who works on simulations of the universe to find out how it was formed. We finished our week speaking to the executive director of ICRAR, Professor Peter Quinn. He talked us through his research of dark matter. He told us about the different hypotheses he has on what dark matter actually is and what he was doing to test them. Our day finished with us saying goodbye to our little team of 5 and thanking Greg for giving us this opportunity.