at 8:00 pm, WEDNESDAY SEPTEMBER 3rd 1997
in the KERR GRANT Lecture Theatre of the
University of South Australia
(Note that this is NOT the Kerr Grant lecture theatre of
the University of Adelaide. Entry is through Gate 4, Frome Road.
Any free spaces on the University of S.A. campus may be used for
parking at that time of night.)
Australian Institute of Physics
South Australian Branch
Joint Meeting of the AIP and the
ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY OF SOUTH AUSTRALIA
Dr MICHAEL ASHLEY
Department of Astrophysics, University of NSW
"ASTRONOMY FROM THE SOUTH POLE"
Over the last few years, astronomers have begun to realise that
the best observing site on the planet for near-infrared through
sub-millimetre astronomy is the high plateau of Antarctica.
Astronomers at the University of New South Wales have taken a lead
role in proving this for the near to mid-infrared at the US
Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station, and for demonstrating that the
astronomical "seeing" at the South Pole has the potential for being
a factor of two better than the best mid-latitude sites. Now,
together with the Australian National University, they are
embarking on an ambitious program to reach the highest points of
the plateau, over 3 km in altitude, with an unmanned site-testing
observatory. Plans are also being hatched to build a 1.5-m
telescope at the South Pole in collaboration with the US. Dr Ashley
will also give an overview of the other astronomy being conducted
at the South Pole (e.g., the world's largest neutrino detector, and
sensitive instruments that are probing the cosmic microwave
background), and will describe his experiences in travelling to the
coldest, driest, highest continent.
Abbreviated CV for Michael Ashley:
Dr Ashley obtained his BSc from ANU in 1981, an MSc in
Astrophysics from Caltech in 1983, and a PhD in Astronomy from Mt.
Stromlo and Siding Spring Observatories in 1989. While completing
his PhD he was a consultant for Auspace on the Endeavour project (a
UV telescope that was flown on the Shuttle) and worked as a
research assistant at the Anglo-Australian Observatory. He joined
the faculty at the School of Physics, UNSW, in 1989, where he is
now a Senior Lecturer. His main research interests have been to
build astronomical instruments and to use them for studying the
infrared sky. In the last few years this has involved building
remotely-controlled instruments for operation at the South Pole.
A pre-meeting dinner from 6:15 p.m. to 7:45 p.m. has been
arranged at the Bangkok Restaurant, upstairs on the south-west
corner of the Rundle Street/Frome Road intersection. The dinner is
a banquet comprising four entrees and five main courses at a
reduced price of $20 per person. A complimentary glass of wine or
juice will be provided by the AIP.
People attending the dinner are asked to confirm their booking
by phoning Maria, 8302 3206, before 12 noon on Monday 1st