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New Zealand Joins Aussie Bid For Vast Radio Telescope Array

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the was-in-the-neighborhood dept.

Australia 60

schliz writes "A radio telescope in New Zealand has joined five in Australia to challenge Southern Africa to host the international Square Kilometer Array (SKA) in 2012. The newly connected telescope in Warkworth, New Zealand (PDF), is connected to an Australian data processing facility via a 1 Gbps network. Each telescope reportedly produces up to 1 Tb of data per hour of observation. IBM expects the whole of the SKA to produce an exabyte of data per day."

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60 comments

New Zealand Story (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32372488)

I sat naked on the bench in the health club locker room, staring at the tiles on the floor between my feet, but really looking at nothing. I was waiting for Barack to decide to come up and talk to me. He was this muscular teenage nigger who frequented the club and had ruined my life in the last few weeks. I was ordered to sit naked on the bench without a towel or anything to cover my nakedness. I had to keep my legs spread and my cock and balls visible for the anyone in the locker room who wanted a look. I knew instantly that it had been a mistake to sign up at the inner city health club which was eighty percent black, but it was near my house and cheap which was even more important.

The harassment had started on my first visit. Dark skinned, muscular black boys bouncing around the locker room with their huge dicks and pendulous sacks of balls swinging, high fiving each other and laughing and rapping, and there I was, this moderately built white guy of thirty two.

I will never forget coming back from the shower and one chocolate skinned thug of about eighteen let out a "weeeeeeeow" kind of sound and then said very loudly to me, loudly enough for all his pals to hear, "White man, how the hell can you fuck wit such a small dick?" They all roared with laughter and I turned bright red. Before I left that first time, I met Barack. He eased up to me while I was packing my gym bag. He is one good looking darkie, I will say that for him. He flashed me a big white toothed smile and said he hoped I wasn't thinking of quitting the club. He said he was friends with the manager and they had my address and shit, and it would be really unfortunate if I decided to quit. Then he laid one large basketball player sized hand on my shoulder and said that he would see me at the same time the next day.

Well, that's how it started. It got worse each time I went to the club. Barack and the other niggers got me to get towels for them, had me scrub their backs in the shower, even made me pick their dirty stinking jock straps up off the floor. They sent their filthy jocks and socks home with me to wash for them.

Now let me state here once and for all, that I am in no way at all gay. I don't think I ever even had a gay thought. So all of this really repulsed me. They would brush up against me so their big fat black dicks rubbed my body. They would make constant jokes about me being a faggot.

So I had it out with Barack. I told him I was a single parent with a thirteen year old daughter and in no way gay, and I wanted to quit the club. That mention of my daughter was the biggest mistake of my life. Barack demanded to see a photo of her. Her name is Crissy. After that, all they talked about was "Crissy the Cunt" in the locker room.

"Some fourteen year old school boy probably shoving his dick in her right now while you is at da club." They would say things like that. Barack would ask, "Do you suppose she had ever sucked black dick?" I told them she was totally innocent, and they should keep their foul mouths to themselves. They beat the shit out of me.

I didn't go to the club for a week. All the windows were broken on my car, and my newspaper was stolen, and somebody pissed all over our door. I received a package at work, and when I opened it, there was a pile of shit in a box. I was going nuts with anguish. I thought of going to the police, but I knew I would face even worse if I did. So I went back to the club. That was two months ago. A lot had happened in those two months.

Now I sat waiting for Barack to speak with me. He walked up, stark naked. The first thing I saw were his huge brown feet next to me. I looked up at his long muscular legs. How could I miss the seven inch flaccid dick, thick as a flashlight and the ball sack that looked like it had oranges in it. It was fucking obscene. His stomach was hard and tight. His ass was one of those round tight nigger bubble butts. His chest well defined with large nipples. He had a killer smile, thick nigger lips, and dark flashing eyes that often looked drugged. He had only recently gotten out of reform school for molesting a girl on the playground.

"So, my man, how's that little dick of yours hangin'?"

I spread my legs wider so he could see my pathetic shriveled white prick and small ball sack. If I didn't keep myself on display for them at all times, they would have a wet towel snapping session where my scrotum was the target. It hurt like hell and was totally humiliating.

"So, bro, is everything set up for tomorrow?" He stood close to me...so close that his huge flaccid hunk of fuck meat brushed my shoulder. His dick was so huge, it was just fucking obscene, and that was in its flaccid state. He had not showered yet, and his body reeked of the nigger stink of his workout.

"Please. Please don't do this. I know I agreed, but that was after you had beaten me almost senseless. Please, isn't there some other way?"

He lifted one leg and put his foot on the bench next to me. His gigantic balls swung back and forth in their fleshy sack.

"Dere is no other fucking way, man. You don't wanna even think of what we gonna do to you next time you disobeys us. Dere is no other way. Now it so happens dat I needs me a new girlfriend, and your pretty little daughter fills da bill."

I felt my stomach turn over. I tried to relax, to breath deeply, but I felt like I was choking. This teenage nigger thug was talking about my daughter. My little Crissy. My thirteen year old angel. He had announced to me that he wanted her to become his girlfriend! Jesus Christ!

At first I had bluntly refused, letting my anger and disgust show. All the niggers in the club gathered around me, about fifteen of them, and Barack announced that I was racially prejudiced and didn't want him dating his white daughter. They started to slap and punch me.

"It's not that. Honest to God, I swear, it's not that you are black. It's that she is only thirteen. She's my innocent baby!"

Barack roared with laughter. "Any bitch of thirteen is totally ready for dick! She probably sucking da boys at school every day anyway by now." He looked at the photo of her which he had taken from me. "Yeah, she got real cocksucker lips, she shore do!"

"Oh God no, she's just a baby." I was crying in front of all of them.

"No, daddy, you gots it wrong. She is a babe...not a baby. Dat pretty little pussy is ready for some nigger popping!" Half the niggers surrounding me were getting hard ons, and I don't there there was one under eight and a half inches.

For weeks I had argued, begged, pleaded, tried to bargain with Barack, but he only wanted one thing. My daughter's virgin pussy. Once I stood up to them and told them I would go to the police. They had dragged me naked and screaming into the health club bathroom and forced me to eat turds out of the toilet bowl. I was sick for two days. The next time I went to the club, Barack had made me suck his dick. That was the first time I saw it erect. Over twelve inches of throbbing leaking nigger cock. I had a panic attack and literally tried to run out of the club. They held me down on a bench and Barack fed me his black fuck meat. His balls almost suffocated me. His dick choked me. He even made me suck his ass. What could I do? I agreed to let them have my daughter. I know, I am an awful man. A sinner. It is unforgivable, but I am scared out of my wits.

"So, tomorrow, I comes over to yo house dressed up real good. You introduce me to yo bitch daughter. Now when I sees her, dis is how I wants her dressed. A very tight tee shirt dat says printed on it, "I Love Nigga Dick!" She will wear no bra under it so I can see the tips of her budding little titties through the material. Den she is to wear her nice pleated cheer leader skirt like in da photo, only I don want her to wear no panties under it. From now on, yo daughter is forbidden to ever wear any panties. We want dat fresh young cunt and ass ready and available at all times. I want you to have some really top drawer booze at yo house ready for me. I am not sure what I will want, so you better have enough to satisfy me, whatever my taste might be. Who da fuck knows, I may want a cosmo, or maybe some of dat Louis XIII Brandy dat costs three hundred dollars. You better have it all. After I has a drink, you pretty little bitch and I gonna sit on da couch and get acquainted. Dat means you as da daddy get to watch me finger her cunt and play wit her titties. You gets to see her meet my big fat old dick and even lick and suck it a little. I always insists on sex on da first date, cause how else you know how a bitch perform, right? Shit, I insist on sex on every date. I mean dat is da only reason for da fucking date..to plow some pussy! Right? Otherwise I'd rather hang wit da home boys. Now she gonna be a little uptight and scared at firs...right? Specially when she see my dick and she know dat huge motherfucker is gonna plow her virgin twat! Oh yea, if she got any hair on her cunt yet, you make sure she shave it all off before tomorrow. I wanna see bald thirteen year old pussy."

While he said all of this to me at the health club, his dick got thicker and thicker and long strings of pre-fuck started to hang from the fat pisshole.

"Please don't hurt her...please." I was shaking in my naked agony.

"Hurt her? No why the fuck would I hurt my new girlfriend? I gonna love her. I gonna show her da pleasures of lovemaking. Shore, it gonna hurt a little da first time I ram my twelve and a half inch motherfucking dick balls deep into her tight little teenage pussy. Shore it gonna hurt when I pounds her as hard as I can, and den pull out and shove it as hard as I can up her little asshole. Shore dat gonna hurt a little, but dat is jus' part of growin' up. A her daddy, you understand dat. Right? Better to hab some nice boy like me who wants her for his girlfriend fucking her, den every boy at school who don't give a shit about her.

"Now don't you worry, I gonna take her into the bedroom to fuck her cunt and ass. I think dat is private. I mean, you can watch da first time she suck my balls and lick my dick and such. But fucking is between a guy and his girlfriend. I wants you dere at the start...at the sucking part, cause she is gonna be scared like I say, and you can calm her. Tell her it is a natural part of life, and she just gotta learn to please a man. She, she shoulda learned dat couple of years ago already. She is a late bloomer.

Now I am gonna want to use her bedroom for da first fuck,cause I wants to fuck her little bitch body in her teenage bed, wit all her teenage shit around. It will be so hot. But den, I is moving into your master bedroom. You can sleep on da couch. I wants a nice big bed and luxury for future fucks. I gotta fuck at least three times a day, usually more. Now of course I still going to be bangin' other cunt, but I will fuck your daughter regularly cause she is my number one girlfriend. My special bitch. I ain't gonna introduce her to my bros until after I fuck her for a week or so. Den when she broken in, I gonna share her with all da boys from dis here health club. Dere about twenty of us here as you know, so she gonna be pretty busy sucking nigga dick and getting ass and cunt fucked. We gonna do mos' of it over at yo house. You have lots of food dere at all times fo my brothers when dey comes over to fuck your daughter. Since she be fucking most every day all day and night from now on, I suggest you apply to home school her. Dat way, she don't even need to think about school and she can concentrate on nigga cock all da time."

"Please, please use condoms...." I had tears running down my face.

Barack roared with laughter. "Condoms? Shit...no. We never use condoms. It ruins da fuck. Dat little bitch gonna be pregnant in a couple of weeks at mos'. You gonna be da grand daddy of a nigga chile! And who knows. She young. If she stay tight enough and cute enough, maybe we fuck her for three or four years, you know, pass her around, pimp her out. Shit, she still young enough. She could hab five or six nigga babies! We don' allow no abortions. She gonna breed. Now my brothers and daddy be comin' over lots to fuck her too, so you better have lots of keys to yo house made, or jus' leave the fucking place unlocked. She don't leave da house without permission. I would hate it for both of you if some black bro comes over for a good hard fuck, and she not dere! Now I know you worried about her. Don' be. After a few days of getting nigga dick, she gonna love it so much, dat all she gonna live for. I seen it in young white bitches lots of times. Someday she gonna thank you for all dis. I mean how many girls her age so lucky to get ten to fifteen black cocks a day? Long as her pussy and asshole hold up, she be happy. One thing, she gonna hab to be a really good cocksucker, cause One thig is dat when da boys in my hood meet up wit guys from other gangs...we got dis thing. We hab our girlfriends suck da cocks of all da members of the other gangs, as kind of a peace signal, you know, a sign dat we is kewl and everything is okay. So she gonna pretty much hab a dick in her mouth twenty-four seven for da next few months. She gonna be sucking on nigga dick even when she getting fucked by my bros. Dis house gonna be pretty packed full of black boys! Now, after a bitch has sucked fifteen to twenty dicks a day, she often get a real tired jaw and swollen lips and a sore tongue, so you gonna have to tell her no matter how tired she get, da last dick of da day she suck, gets jus' as good a suck as da first one in da morning. You gotta make sue she understand that. I can't have no bad reports from rival gangs dat my bitch can't suck!

Now we gots one more problem. Da little bitch gonna be so busy getting fucked and sucking dick, she ain't gonna hab no proper time to clean up da dicks after dey fuck her cunt and ass! You know it da bitch's job to clean a dick wit her mouth after a brother fuck her. I mean, you can't expect a brother to walk around wit pussy slime or ass juice on his dick. But she gonna be so busy, she ain't always gonna hab time to clean up, so you my friend is going to have to step up to da plate to help her. You gonna be the official dick cleaner. You gonna lick and suck da dicks clean after dey fuck yo bitch of a daughter. I want you naked on you hands and knees at all times around da house, ready to lick and suck dick clean. And you gonna do a fine job too, I just know it. You get all dat stink off da cock. Maybe you can entertain da brothers waiting next in line to fuck yo daughter too by lickig dere balls and assholes. I never thought of dat until just now. Hot damn, dat is a good idea, ain't it? So dey don't get bored while dey waitin. And den, to keep your daughter fresh and tight, after every three or four fucks, you gonna crawl in and suck the nigga cum right outta her pussy and asshole. Think how great dat is. You gonna get to suck some thirteen year old pussy and asshole! How lucky is dat? You gonna clean out her cunt real good with yo tongue so it is ready for da next nigga.

We gonna be da happiest family you ever seen! Now come on, white boy, suck my dick, can't you see it dripping all over da floor?"

I put my mouth over the head of the huge leaking hunk of fuckmeat, and resigned myself and my daughter to our new destiny.

Re:New Zealand Story (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32372592)

That story should have ended with the man blowing his brains out. Chicken shit.

Re:New Zealand Story (1)

master5o1 (1068594) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372900)

Actually, to classify as a New Zealand story, it would have to be about a guy in the South Island and his flock of sheep... In particularly the favouritism towards at least one particular sheep.

Re:New Zealand Story (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32373712)

We don't shear our sheep down south, we keep them for ourselves!

Mmmm .... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32372508)

Mmmmm .... VLBA sexy. Exabytes, *arghghgh*

mmm exabytes..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32372534)

said in the voice of a hungry Homer Simpson

Re:mmm exabytes..... (1)

kirill.s (1604911) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372792)

When Homer says that, he means -bites.

Did you mean SKA or Ska? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32372536)

I can imagine the total lack of confusion when absolutely no one mistakes the SKA with the music genre Ska.

Backup Officer (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32372542)

I really don't envy the guys in charge of backups...

Re:Backup Officer (2, Funny)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372564)

It's probably a cloud solution involving a few million g-mail accounts ;)

"Square Kilometer Array" (5, Funny)

ScaryMonkey (886119) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372552)

Gotta love the creativity that goes into these names. Too bad they stopped with the previous naming pattern, I was waiting for the "Fucking Enormously Huge Array".

Re:"Square Kilometer Array" (5, Informative)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372588)

I'd like a Beowulf cluster [itnews.com.au] of those ;)

Already, the telescope network has been used to image the heart of a galaxy called Centaurus A, which is 14 million light-years away and contains a supermassive black hole.

Observing the galaxy for ten hours, each of the six telescopes recorded up to 10 Tb of data. This was transmitted to Perth's Curtin University of Technology via KAREN and the 10 Gbps AARNET.

At Curtin, the data was processed on a local 160-core Beowulf cluster comprising a 100 Tb spinning disk and supported by petabyte storage at the iVEC supercomputing centre.

The cluster consolidated and processed the data into a final data set a "few" gigabytes in size, according to Curtin professor Steven Tingay.

Fucking Awesome Radio Telescope (2, Funny)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 3 years ago | (#32373410)

I assume that name would not pass?

Re:"Square Kilometer Array" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32375960)

That's a silly name, I'd have called it a Chazwazer.

Re:"Square Kilometer Array" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#32385686)

Optical astronomers are still using the old naming pattern: they've proposed the Overwhelmingly Large Telescope [wikipedia.org] .

translation (1)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372556)

The newly connected telescope in Warkworth, New Zealand (PDF), is connected to an Australian data processing facility via a 0.000048828125 LOC/s network. Each telescope reportedly produces up to 0.05 LOC of data per hour of observation. IBM expects the whole of the SKA to produce 52428.8 LOC of data per day.

Re:translation (2, Insightful)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372560)

But I thought LOC was a measure of information not data.

Re:translation (1)

rossdee (243626) | more than 3 years ago | (#32378980)

"0.000048828125 LOC/s"

You can't use that sort of precision with the Library-Of-Congress unit, since its not a static amount - it keeps growing.

So, what? (3, Insightful)

Frans Faase (648933) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372566)

I do not understand what is so interesting about this. Another dish added to various international VLBI networks. There is also one such dish near Urumqi in China in a very remote area. There are so many of these kind of dishes around the world. Even here in the Netherlands we have one. But we also have LOFAR [lofar.org] , which is also capable of producing large amounts of data everyday. This kind of systems usually only operate for short periodes and the data produced are immediately processed and only the results are stored.

Re:So, what? (1)

DuQax (1821218) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372872)

dizi izle [dizi-izle1.com]

Re:So, what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32373010)

Well If they put a 1 sq km array in New Zealand there would be not room left for anything else. At least in Australia we have some spare space lying around. Note : If you are not from New Zealand or Australia you probably don't see the point of this remark. I thought someone should uphold the honour or the Trans Tasman sort of pointless rivalry.

Re:So, what? (1)

pinkstuff (758732) | more than 3 years ago | (#32373246)

I'll bite. Although New Zealand may seem small next to Australia, it is actually slightly larger than the whole of the UK.

This is about Slashdot's story quota. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32373214)

Or more accurately that of certain editors to promote their favourite and/or home nations: namely Australia, and to a lesser extent New Zealand.

Just search to see the hugely disproportionate number of "stories" from-or-about Australia on this site.

Re:So, what? (1)

buchner.johannes (1139593) | more than 3 years ago | (#32373612)

I do not understand what is so interesting about this ... This kind of systems usually only operate for short periodes and the data produced are immediately processed and only the results are stored.

That is the difference. SKA will not store the data, because it is unfeasible. A lot of effort goes into the processing pipeline and enabling it to handle the throughput.

Re:So, what? (3, Informative)

Frans Faase (648933) | more than 3 years ago | (#32374172)

For your information, the LOFAR system also processes data immediately. All the stations are connected with 10Gbit networks to the central processing system in Groningen.

Each LOFAR antenna produces 0.8 Gbyte of data per second. When finallized, the system will consist of about 7000 antenna spread out over about 40 field most of which are in the Netherlands, but about ten of them will be abroad. I understand that each field will perform some preprocessing before the data is send to the central processing unit where it is correlated and further reduced before it being stored and made available for off-line processing. See here [lofar.org] for a detailed description.

Re:So, what? (4, Informative)

RogerWilco (99615) | more than 3 years ago | (#32376542)

Well, that's partially true. The online/realtime processing doesn't store the data. We have the data coming in at about 150 Gbit/s into the BlueGene supercomputer (34 TFlop), which does initial realtime processing and writes resulting files at about 50 Gbit/s on a roughly 1 Petabyte intermediate storage system for offline processing. From there it gets initial processing/calibration and a factor of 16 to 64 reduction in size on the offline processing cluster (about 200 8core machines). Also some inspection of the data is done for quality assessment, and sky images are made. If the quality is good, the resulting data and images are moved to out 4+ Petabyte long term archive, where further processing can also be done to achieve publication ready results.
On average we are expected to be producing about 20 TB/hour raw data, and about 700 GB/hour data that gets archived (life time of more than a week).

As I speak we are 2 weeks away from the system being opened by the Dutch Queen, and we are operating on about half the above numbers with about 25 antenna fields online. By the end of 2010 we should be operating at full strength. Also, those numbers are from the top of my head, so I might be off a bit here and there.

LOFAR is seen as a precursor to SKA, the first of a new generation of telescopes based much more on software and firmware and cheap off the shelve instead of expensive dishes and custom DSP hardware. After the various VLBI efforts (Including JIVE, which is housed in the same building as ASTRON and LOFAR), LOFAR now is the biggest telescope on Earth.
http://www.astron.nl/dailyimage/main.php?date=20100421 [astron.nl]
http://www.astron.nl/dailyimage/main.php?date=20100125 [astron.nl]

There are some rather nice images starting to come out of the system, if you're a radioastronomer, but most are under embargo until the opening. I can show you this older image:
http://www.astron.nl/dailyimage/main.php?date=20100208 [astron.nl]

When mentioning SKA precursors, it's also noteworthy to mention that the 14 25meter dish WSRT array will be upgraded with focal plane arrays over the next two years, and the EMBRACE test bed has almost finished building it's first three stations.
http://www.astron.nl/dailyimage/main.php?date=20070801 [astron.nl]
http://www.astron.nl/dailyimage/main.php?date=20091012 [astron.nl]

It's nice to have a real time link for this work (4, Interesting)

NixieBunny (859050) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372584)

I work on millimeter- and submillmeter-wave frequency radio telescopes in Arizona that occasionally do VLBI runs at 1.3mm (230 GHz). We don't have anything like a 1Gbps data link; it's more like 10 Mbps. It's hard to get the phone company to install a fiber cable run up a mountain.

Our VLBI data are stored on hard disks at a rate of ~1 Gbps, then correlated later on some big computer back east. We have to wait days to learn if interference fringes were detected!

Re:It's nice to have a real time link for this wor (2, Interesting)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372608)

On a distantly related note I once worked with a guy who was doing synthetic aperture radar from a sled on the antarctic ice cap. On his return he planned to spend weeks manually reducing the data so I wrote a fortran program for him which did the whole job in three hours on VAX 11/730.

Re:It's nice to have a real time link for this wor (2, Insightful)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372636)

It's hard to get the phone company to install a fiber cable run up a mountain.

How expensive would it be to lay out the fiber yourselves? About $5k per mile to the closes phone company supported location? How far would it be?

Just asking.

Re:It's nice to have a real time link for this wor (3, Interesting)

NixieBunny (859050) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372656)

It's all politics. There's the environmental impact problem. The folks who arranged for our underground power line really screwed up by not putting a fiber in the same trench; now it's virtually impossible to get the Forest Service to permit additional work. Four words: Mount Graham Red Squirrels!

Re:It's nice to have a real time link for this wor (3, Funny)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372690)

now it's virtually impossible to get the Forest Service to permit additional work.

- Buy the fiber roll.
  - Throw some green and brown paing buckets over it.
  - Before it dries, throw in little branches, leaves, and red squirrels.
  - Buy a ninja costume, a shovel and a pair of night vision goggles.
  - Every night, go to the forest, lay out some meters of underground fiber and hide the camo roll.

If someone finds you, dressed as a splinter cell ninja, carrying a shovel and an oversized rotten donut, you can make a deal: if he finds out what's your PhD on, you give him $5k, if he doesn't, he leaves you alone.

Re:It's nice to have a real time link for this wor (1)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372802)

What's more important? You can have internet or the endangered Mount Graham Red Squirrels can have an environment free of redneck construction workers fucking everything up? You think maybe those laws exist for a reason?

Re:It's nice to have a real time link for this wor (2, Insightful)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 3 years ago | (#32374666)

> What's more important?

Astronomy. Fuck the squirrels. They'll survive a little construction work.

> ...redneck construction workers fucking everything up?

Bigot.

> You think maybe those laws exist for a reason?

All laws exist for a reason. It usually isn't a good one. In this case it is because reactionary ecofreaks have better political connections than do astronomers.

Add some windmills to yout installation and come up with a plausible reason why they need fiber. The permits will slide right through.

Re:It's nice to have a real time link for this wor (1)

RogerWilco (99615) | more than 3 years ago | (#32376708)

One of the stories I heard, about another VLBI telescope, was that getting to within about 15km was easy, but the last stretch costed about 400,000 euro. These telescopes tend to be in rather inaccessible terrain.

Re:It's nice to have a real time link for this wor (1)

thogard (43403) | more than 3 years ago | (#32376906)

When I was 16, it involved two minimum wage guys who were 16 and a device a bit bigger than a roto-tiller and a spool of cable.

So slow... (2, Interesting)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372590)

When I imagine a future civilization, I always think of the technology they have and the consequences of that technology. I never took into account the large buffer between both.

What stops humans from launching telescopes to Lagrangian points all around us?

Sometimes I think we should create an outside enemy, just to regroup the entire species in a single entity, able to attack bigger problems than our tiny local quarrels.

Re:So slow... (1)

anarche (1525323) | more than 3 years ago | (#32373462)

Sometimes I think we should create an outside enemy, just to regroup the entire species in a single entity, able to attack bigger problems than our tiny local quarrels.

Robot overlords!

Three Cheers for the SKA (1)

BrightSpark (1578977) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372598)

Australia has more square kilometres than most. Hip Hip Array!!

Re:Three Cheers for the SKA (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372622)

Australia has more square kilometres than most. Hip Hip Array!!

Which is why I am surprised the array is in NZ. I suppose it is okay to allow sheep to graze under the receiver dishes.

Re:Three Cheers for the SKA (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32372646)

I drive past the warkworth telescope a few times a month. Rest assured, there are no sheep grazing beneath it. There are, however, cows in the paddocks surrounding the 'telescope patch' :)

Re:Three Cheers for the SKA (1)

darkknigh152 (919794) | more than 4 years ago | (#32387534)

I live in Warkworth, at one point there actually were sheep grazing very near it but they got moved a while back. I did on one occasion go for a night time bush exploration on the hills surrounding the telescope. The dishes look very cool at night.

Re:Three Cheers for the SKA (2, Insightful)

buchner.johannes (1139593) | more than 3 years ago | (#32373062)

In arrays, you want _many baselines_ (telescope to telescope distances) and you want them to be _long_, because that will make your image better. It shouldn't be as large as the earth-radius though, otherwise you can only observe a few hours per day.

The SKA is being built in South Africa or Australia, and New Zealand would like to provide an "addon" to the SKA -- if it is going to be built in Australia --, that will provide a *huge* improve on the baselines involved. Tests have shown that the imaging capability drastically improves, so it would be well worth it.

Disclaimer: I am researching in the NZ institute mentioned.

Re:Three Cheers for the SKA (1)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 3 years ago | (#32375364)

It shouldn't be as large as the earth-radius though, otherwise you can only observe a few hours per day.

I'd think you'd want a baseline nearly as long as an Earth diameter, as long as you can switch elements in and out of the array as they come into view of the target. With a ring all the way around the planet and the ability to continuously reconfigure the array in real time you could keep equatorial objects under continuous observation. Resolution would vary throughout the day, though, as it is not (yet) practical to place elements at sea.

Re:Three Cheers for the SKA (1)

RogerWilco (99615) | more than 3 years ago | (#32377072)

While you are correct, long baselines come with a couple big drawbacks:
- You need higher time resolution to prevent bandwidth smearing.
- You need intermediate length baselines as well, or your uv coverage will be poor.
- To grid your data in the uv plane becomes very hard as the grid becomes very large.

This means that the size of the data you need to manipulate and processing requirements go up very quickly with longer baselines. For LOFAR we now have baselines of about 1000km and we will go even longer to 2-3000km. processing requirements for observations that contain all our stations, both short and long baselines are huge. I'm talking PFlops if you want to do it real time.
Partially you can get around this by using only long baselines, like in VLBI, and just imaging small things, but for SKA you'll have many short baselines as well.

Disclaimer: I work for ASTRON operating the 14 25m dish 3km WSRT, 7000 antenna 44 station 3000km LOFAR and the 3 station EMBRACE SKA demonstrator project. Although I'm not an astronomer. ;-)
I just visited a friend of mine at the University of Canterbury in ChristChurch, working with the MOA, astrophysics is a small world in NZ, good luck getting involved in SKA!

Re:Three Cheers for the SKA (1)

buchner.johannes (1139593) | more than 3 years ago | (#32377836)

Disclaimer: I work for ASTRON operating the 14 25m dish 3km WSRT, 7000 antenna 44 station 3000km LOFAR and the 3 station EMBRACE SKA demonstrator project. Although I'm not an astronomer. ;-)
I just visited a friend of mine at the University of Canterbury in ChristChurch, working with the MOA, astrophysics is a small world in NZ, good luck getting involved in SKA!

I will contact you guys soon with some software system questions re EMBRACE ... if you could leave your email address in a comment on my blog that'd be great. I'm researching scheduling systems (and probably simulators as well) for the SKA. Cheers

Re:Three Cheers for the SKA (1)

thogard (43403) | more than 3 years ago | (#32376940)

The power is much cheaper in NZ.

Is this really a good idea? (4, Insightful)

CuteSteveJobs (1343851) | more than 3 years ago | (#32372660)

Think twice, New Zealand. If the aliens start beaming you back porn, then Australia will have to filter your radio telescopes.

Re:Is this really a good idea? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32372822)

Unnecessary [slashdot.org]
 
Typical. First pavlova, now censorship.

Re:Is this really a good idea? (1)

martin-boundary (547041) | more than 3 years ago | (#32373150)

Not so. The scientists have agreed to share it. On even weekends, the dish gets dismantled and flown to New Zealand to be installed there, while on odd weekends, they air mail it back to Australia.

Re:Is this really a good idea? (1)

anarche (1525323) | more than 3 years ago | (#32373474)

Actually Australia is bringing New Zealand in on this proposal just in case of the threat of aliens [imdb.com]

Re:Is this really a good idea? (3, Funny)

seanvaandering (604658) | more than 3 years ago | (#32373732)

Just as long as the porn is not of women with small tits... that would be illegal

Well that's Australia out (1)

Swampash (1131503) | more than 3 years ago | (#32373194)

The latency will be a killer when all that data has to get processed by the Great Firewall.

Will it fit in NZ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32373366)

Will the vast array fit in narrow New Zealand?

South Africa (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#32373968)

It's South Africa. Not Southern Africa. South Africa.

Which is the name of a country by the way, not a region.

Re:South Africa (1)

TheDayOfMe (808363) | more than 3 years ago | (#32383450)

Yeah, but they are talking about the region.

"With the central core of the SKA located in this south-western part of the country the remote antenna stations would be located on easterly and northerly log spirals up to 3000 km away (Namibia, Botswana, Mozambique, Madagascar Mauritius, Kenya and Ghana)." skatelescope.org [skatelescope.org]

South Africa still has the advantage (2, Interesting)

Siener (139990) | more than 3 years ago | (#32374410)

I've been following the bid process for SKA for quite a few years. As far as I can tell South Africa (together with its other Southern African partners) have a clear advantage over Australia (now together with NZ)

There are a few reasons for this:

1. The passing of the South Africa's Astronomy Geographic Advantage Act [ska.ac.za] in 2007 declares almost the whole of the Northern Cape province (an area about 1.5 times that of the UK) into an astronomy advantage area. Amongst other things it means that light pollution will be limited and that the whole area will eventually be turned into a radio quiet zone.

2. Much of the technology used in South Africa's pilot program (MeerKAT [ska.ac.za] ) will be directly useable in SKA. By comparison, the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder project has much less tech that will be useable in SKA without major redesign and modification.

3. Price. From the start keeping the price down was a very high priority goal for the SA bid. E.g. they developed a new process to manufacture the dishes that is much cheaper than conventional methods. Now, after the credit crunch where many scientific budgets are getting cut, this strategy is paying off.

Disclaimer 1: I am a South African and therefore far from neutral
Disclaimer 2: The last time I read extensively on this is more than six months ago, so if there were significant developments recently then I might not be aware of them

Re:South Africa still has the advantage (2, Informative)

buchner.johannes (1139593) | more than 3 years ago | (#32375206)

1. The passing of the South Africa's Astronomy Geographic Advantage Act [ska.ac.za] in 2007 declares almost the whole of the Northern Cape province (an area about 1.5 times that of the UK) into an astronomy advantage area. Amongst other things it means that light pollution will be limited and that the whole area will eventually be turned into a radio quiet zone.

The Australian desert is an empty, extremely radio quiet right now, and has also been declared as a no-building zone. In comparison, the million cell towers make South Africa is extremely noisy.

2. Much of the technology used in South Africa's pilot program (MeerKAT [ska.ac.za] ) will be directly useable in SKA. By comparison, the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder project has much less tech that will be useable in SKA without major redesign and modification.

I'd be interested in hearing more about that. Why is the one more directly reuseable?

3. Price. From the start keeping the price down was a very high priority goal for the SA bid. E.g. they developed a new process to manufacture the dishes that is much cheaper than conventional methods. Now, after the credit crunch where many scientific budgets are getting cut, this strategy is paying off.

Disclaimer 1: I am a South African and therefore far from neutral
Disclaimer 2: The last time I read extensively on this is more than six months ago, so if there were significant developments recently then I might not be aware of them

Interesting.

4. Baselines: The NZ-AUS baseline is going to be extremely long.

There is also a "5. Politics & political stability", which is a bit more complex and probably has some FUD.

Cheers

Re:South Africa still has the advantage (1)

RogerWilco (99615) | more than 3 years ago | (#32377166)

The last word definitely hasn't been said about this yet, but I tend to agree that Australia slightly edges out SA at the moment. As for the technology, there are a few more options than only MeerKAT or ASKAP technology. Here at ASTRON we work on EMBRACE and LOFAR.

Locating SKA? (1)

RevWaldo (1186281) | more than 3 years ago | (#32374492)

Jamaica [youtube.com] was an obvious choice but they have other problems to deal with at the moment.

England [youtube.com] also put in their bid but unfortunately all the images would only come back in 2-tone.

Of course, they're still considering putting up SKAtelies [youtube.com] instead.

.

Crocodile Dunedin says... (1)

Dogtanian (588974) | more than 3 years ago | (#32374698)

"That's not a telescope array..... *that's* a telescope array."
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