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My honours and PhD projects for UWA were mostly spent at Perth Observatory – I helped automate the 61cm telescope there, built the first digital camera in WA, and helped set up an automated supernova search. I then worked at Perth Observatory as a staff member from 1996-2013. My research there involved working with the PLANET and MiNDSTEp gravitational microlensing groups hunting for extrasolar planets. I started working on Monitor and Control software for the Murchison Widefield Array in 2008, and moved to Curtin in 2013, where I work as an instrumentation engineer, on the MWA and other projects.

Research links:

Some software I’ve written that might be useful to some people (please let me know if you use it):

  • Teljoy – Optical telescope control software written in Python, used at Perth Observatory and Mt John Observatory.
  • CalcOrbit – N-body Solar-System simulator for the planets and up to a few thousand asteroids, with a 3D rendered animation of the results as the model progresses. The model accuracy isn’t great, but it lets you see qualitative results – For example, you can do things like start with a random distribution of asteroids between Mars and Jupiter, and watch the development of Kirkwood gaps and Jupiter Trojan groups.
  • Prosp – CCD camera control and image processing software, written in Python, used at Perth Observatory. Works with an Andor iKon-L camera.
  • fitstime – Pure Python FITS library, and code to intelligently extract all date/time/JD/HJD/MJD/exptime header cards, evaluate what each of them actually represent, and calculate Heliocentric Julian Day at exposure midpoint. Written to deal with FITS files from a wide variety of CCD cameras and clients.

ICRAR Statement

The content of this page is maintained by Andrew Williams, please contact them with any questions or comments on this content.