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UWA’s prototype SKA frequency synchronisation system alongside ancillary equipment deployed in the Compact Array’s correlator room. Credit Sascha Schediwy.

UWA’s prototype SKA frequency synchronisation system alongside ancillary equipment deployed in the Compact Array’s correlator room. Credit Sascha Schediwy.

The aim of this project is to contribute to the development of the frequency synchronisation system for the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) radio telescope.

The SKA will be the largest and most complex astronomical instrument to date, with individual antennas spread over continental scales. One of the most complex technical challenges will be the coherent combination of astronomical signals collected by the hundreds of remote antennas. To achieve this, astronomical observations must be synchronised using timing signals of exquisite accuracy and precision.

The student will work as part of the Astrophotonics Group at the International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research (ICRAR) to help design, build, and test an optical fibre-based frequency distribution system tailored to meet the scientific needs and logistical challenges of the SKA. This system will be developed in our UWA laboratory and tested on Perth’s AARNet fibre networks, with the aim to deploy the finished product on the MeerKAT telescope in South Africa.

This research will be conducted in collaboration with the University of Manchester’s Jodrell Bank Observatory and SKA South Africa.

MORE INFO

PDF PROJECT DESCRIPTION AND TIMELINE

Co-Supervisors

Mr Charles Gravestock

Research Engineer

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