Friday, June 3, 2011

ASKAP antennas named by local Aboriginal community

 (Photo Credit: Ant Schinckel, CSIRO)

The Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder telescope has had its first six antennas named by the local Wajarri Aboriginals. The chosen names for the first six ASKAP antennas include: Bilyarli (galah); Bundarra (stars); Wilara (the Moon); Jirdilungu (the Milky Way); Balayi (a lookout, as this antenna looks down westward to others); and Diggidumble (a nearby table-top hill).

The names were bestowed by representatives of seven Aboriginal families at a ceremony at the Murchison Radio-astronomy Observatory (MRO), during which name plaques were fixed to each antenna.

The remainder of the 36 antennas along with local roads and other structures will also eventually receive local Wajarri names once they are constructed.

CSIRO's ASKAP Director, Antony ("Ant") Schinckel has also been given a Wajarri name -"Minga", which means "ant".

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