Tuning in to the Radio Universe from Birr

FRIDAY, 9th February: Session One

Tuning in to the Radio Universe from Birr

Astronomical objects emit light across the electromagnetic spectrum, which has led astronomers to build instruments to observe the Universe from gamma-rays to radio waves. Starting in the mid-1800s and continuing for more than 70 years, the largest optical telescope in the world was at Birr Castle in Ireland. It enabled the 3rd Earl of Rosse to see the spiral arms of galaxies for the first time. Recently, a new telescope has been built at Birr to explore the Universe at radio wavelengths. In this talk, Peter will describe the construction of the Irish Low Frequency Array (I-LOFAR), how it operates, and show some first-light observations.

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About Peter Gallagher

Professor Gallagher leads the Solar Physics and Space Weather Group at Trinity College Dublin. His research focuses on understanding solar activity and its impacts on Earth. Prof. Gallagher is head of the Irish LOFAR radio telescope project at Birr Castle (www.lofar.ie) and is a member of numerous ESA and NASA satellite teams, including Solar Orbiter. He was appointed to ESA's Space Science Advisory Committee for 2017-2019. Before joining Trinity, Professor Gallagher was a Research Fellow at Owens Valley Radio Observatory and Big Bear Solar Observatory in California, and a Senior Scientist at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center.