A short timelapse sequence captured during a quick trip to the Murchison Radio-astronomy Observatory (~700km north of Perth). It's one of the 128 tiles that make up the new Murchison Widefield Array radio telescope.
The video contains about 2 hours worth of 30 second exposures from just after sunset until about 9:30pm. The Moon is lighting the landscape and the dark patches are when it disappears behind cloud.
The MWA project is led by Curtin University and is a collaboration between research institutions in Australia, India, New Zealand and the US. By developing collaborations with industry the MWA project is also helping small and medium enterprise to become involved in the construction of the SKA.
The MWA has an innovative design with no moving parts. Instead it relies on computing power to point at astronomical objects and process the data it collects from the sky.
The telescope has 2,048 antennas, split up into 128 groups of 16 called ‘tiles’ that are spread as far as 3km apart. It’s designed to have an excellent field of view on the sky (about 500 full moons) and to be very adaptable, being almost exclusively electronically controlled.
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