The Wonderful Century: Astronomy For Development

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Presentation by Prof. George Miley during the Symposium: Astronomy, Radio Sources and Society in Leiden, NL June 2013
www.strw.leidenuniv.nl/symposium/

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The Wonderful Century: Astronomy For Development

  1. 1. THE  WONDERFUL  CENTURY  ASTRONOMY  FOR  DEVELOPMENT    •  1.  Astronomy  and  space  as  a  tool  for  PUBLIC  OUTREACH    •  2.  Astronomy  and  space  as  tool  for  DEVELOPMENT  –  Technological  and  human  capacity  building  • Builds  on  astronomy  for  public  outreach  –  MoLvaLon  of  South  Africa      •  3.  EffecLveness  of  astronomy  as  tool  for  EARLY  EDUCATION  –  “Give  me  a  child  unLl  they  are  7  and  I  have  them  for  life”!  
  2. 2. TWO  PROPOSITIONS  •  1.  ASTRONOMY  IS  A  UNIQUE  TOOL  FOR  FURTHERING  GLOBAL  DEVELOPMENT  •  2.  USING  ASTRONOMY  TO  MOTIVATE  YOUNG  CHILDREN  IS  ONE  OF  THE  MOST  EFFECTIVE  WAYS  OF  BUILDING  CAPACITY                        SEVERAL  SUPPORTING  WITNESSES    
  3. 3. H.G.  WELLS  -­‐  SCIENTIFIC  AND  SOCIAL  VISIONARY  “WAR OF THE WORLDS” •  First  published  in  1897!  –  Serialised  in  Pearson’s  monthly  magazine  –  Every  issue  eagerly  awaited  and  sold  out    •  SLll  gripping  story  –  MarLans  use  laser  “death  ray”  appear  to  be  victorious  –  Eventually  wiped  out  by  terrestrial  bacteria  to              which  humans  are  immune  –  Includes  real  astronomers  and  phenomena                reported  in  Nature  •  Got  me  hooked  on  astronomy  at  age  7  •  Demonstrates  that  even  in  1890s  •  ASTRONOMY  AND  SPACE    EXCITED  WIDE  PUBLIC    •  PERSPECTIVE  OF  ASTRONOMY  CAN  STIMULATE  SENSE  OF  INTERNATIONALISM  •  Listen  to  epilogue    
  4. 4. Excerpts from War of the Worlds - H.G. Wells - 1898
  5. 5. JODRELL  BANK  IN  1950S  CRADLE  OF  ASTRONOMY  OUTREACH  TO  WIDE  PUBLIC    •  GM  PhD  1963  -­‐  1968  •  Largest  radio  telescope  then  built  (1957)  –  250  e    diameter  x3  larger  than  Dwingeloo  radio  telescope  –  Huge  majesLc  structure  -­‐  dominated  Cheshire  countryside  •  InsLgated  and  developed  very  long-­‐baseline  interferometry  –  Played  crucial  role  in  discovery  of  quasars  
  6. 6. BUT  SIR  BERNARD  LOVELL  HAD  ENORMOUS    PROBLEMS    •  HUGE  FINANCIAL  OVERRUN  BY  FACTOR  OF  x3    •  ALMOST  WENT  TO  JAIL      
  7. 7. SAVED  BY  LAUNCH  OF  SPUTNIK  1  –  4  OCTOBER  1957  AND  PUBLIC  OUTREACH  Children strainingto see Sputnik
  8. 8. FIRST  WITNESS                      SIR  BERNARD  LOVELL      •  Will  demonstrate  that  –  1.  PR,  MOBILISING  PRESS  +  PUBLIC/  LOBBYING  POLITICIANS            CRUCIAL  IN    OBTAINING  FUNDING  FOR  ASTRONOMY  • [LOFAR  in  Netherlands  2002  –  2004  – Lobbying  was  crucial  – Funded  not  to  do  astronomy  but  to  reinforce  technological  capacity  in  North  Netherlands]  –  2.  ASTRONOMY  AND  SPACE  CAN  INSPIRE  CHILDREN      
  9. 9. SIR BERNARD LOVELL AT 96
  10. 10. PROFESSIONALISATION  OF  ASTRONOMY  OUTREACH      •  NASA  from  1960s    –  Developed  during  moon  race  –  Extended  to  all  NASA  missions    •  (e.g.  Hubble  Telescope  –  GM  at  STSCI  1984  -­‐  88)  •  10%  of  research  spending  for  outreach  and  educaLon  –  Now  commonplace  at  astronomical  insLtutes  •  Ideal  vehicle  for  modern  media  tools    •  CulminaLon  with  IAU-­‐UNESCO  INTERNATIONAL  YEAR  OF  ASTRONOMY  2009  –  Demonstrated  global  power  of  astronomy  outreach  –  Largest  science  outreach  event  ever  •  Reached  several  hundred  million  people  •   146  NaLonal  Nodes  •  RaLfied  by  UN    
  11. 11. ASTRONOMY  FOR  DEVELOPMENT  BUILDS  ON  SUCCESS  OF  ASTRONOMY  OUTREACH    
  12. 12. ASTRONOMYTECHNOLOGYAND SKILLSSCIENCE ANDRESEARCHCULTURE ANDSOCIETYPILLARS OF DEVELOPMENT
  13. 13. ASTRONOMYOPTICSHigh-precisionadaptiveopticsCOMPUTERSFastesthardwareComplexsoftwareELECTRONICSMost sensitivedetectorsFastest clocksSPACESatellitesMiniaturizationPrecisionTECHNOLOGY    AND  SKILLS  Sensitive antennasCharge coupled devices (cameras)Low-noise amplifiersSupercomputersWireless InternetMost accurate clocksGPS navigationMedical imagingSOME TECHNOLOGYDRIVEN BY ASTRONOMYWHY ASTRONOMY FOR DEVELOPMENT?Flexible adaptive mirrors
  14. 14. CUTTING-EDGE TECHNOLOGYSALT – South AfricaSUBARU – Japan/ HawaiiHUBBLE SPACE TELESCOPEUS - EuropeVERY LARGE TELESCOPEEurope - ChileActive optics mirrorWide-fieldimaging spectrograph
  15. 15. LOW FREQUENCY ARRAY (LOFAR)Netherlands/EuropeGIANT METREWAVE RADIO TELESCOPEPUNE, INDIAATACAMA MILLIMETER ARRAYEurope, US, Japan, Taiwan, ChileRECEIVER INTEGRATION UNITSIn Asia (Taiwan), Europe (UK)and US
  16. 16. ASTRONOMYOPTICSHigh-precisionadaptive optics COMPUTERSFastesthardwareComplexsoftwareELECTRONICSMost sensitivedetectorsFastest clocksSPACESatellitesMiniaturizationPrecisionPHYSICSLaboratory ofextremesMaking heavyelementsCHEMISTRYProducingorganicmoleculesBIOLOGYBuildingblocks of lifeMATHEM-ATICSAbstractthoughtTECHNOLOGY    AND  SKILLS  SCIENCE  AND    RESEARCH  WHY ASTRONOMY FOR DEVELOPMENT?
  17. 17. ASTRONOMY  AS  SCIENCE  •  Inexpensive  laboratories  for  studying  laws  of  physics                under  extreme  condiLons:  –  Largest  energies  (~  1061  erg).    –  Largest  densiLes  1018  kg/m3.    –  Most  tenuous  vacuum    –  Largest  sizes  >  10  million  light  years  •  FronLer  science  do-­‐able  from  anywhere  in  world  (archives)  
  18. 18. THE CLOSEST WONDERFUL RADIO GALAXYCENTAURUS AFeain et al 2011Australia TelescopeDistance~ 10 million light yearsPhysical Size ~ 3.4 Mpc10 MILLION LIGHT YEARS ACROSSAngular size ~ 9 deg.~ X20 LARGER THAN MOON !!!Optically visible galaxyFeain et al 2011Australia TelescopePurple is picture ofRadio emission
  19. 19. ASTRONOMYOPTICSHigh-precisionadaptive optics COMPUTERSFastesthardwareComplexsoftwareELECTRONICSMost sensitivedetectorsFastest clocksSPACESatellitesMiniaturizationPrecisionPHYSICSLaboratory ofextremesMaking heavyelementsCHEMISTRYProducingorganicmoleculesBIOLOGYBuilding blocksof lifeMATHEM-ATICSApplication ofsophisticatedformalismsINSPIRATIONCareer inscience andtechnologyANTHRO-POLOGYAncientcivilizationsOur rootsHISTORYEvolution ofUniverseOur rootsPERSPECTIVEIMMENSITYOF UNIVERSETolerance andglobalcitizenshipTECHNOLOGY    AND  SKILLS  SCIENCE  AND    RESEARCH  CULTURE    AND  SOCIETY  WHY ASTRONOMY FOR DEVELOPMENT?
  20. 20. HISTORY  OF  THE  UNIVERSE  Everything came out of the Big Bang!!
  21. 21. ASTRONOMYOPTICSHigh-precisionadaptive optics COMPUTERSFastesthardwareComplexsoftwareELECTRONICSMost sensitivedetectorsFastest clocksSPACESatellitesMiniaturizationPrecisionPHYSICSLaboratory ofextremesMaking heavyelementsCHEMISTRYProducingorganicmoleculesBIOLOGYBuilding blocksof lifeMATHEM-ATICSApplication ofsophisticatedformalismsINSPIRATIONCareer inscience andtechnologyANTHRO-POLOGYAncientcivilizationsOur rootsHISTORYEvolution ofUniverseOur rootsPERSPECTIVEIMMENSITYOF UNIVERSETolerance andglobalcitizenshipTECHNOLOGY    AND  SKILLS  SCIENCE  AND    RESEARCH  CULTURE    AND  SOCIETY  WHY ASTRONOMY FOR DEVELOPMENT?
  22. 22. TOOLS  OF  ASTRONOMY  FOR  HUMAN  CAPACITY  BUILDING  “from  the  cradle  to  the  grave”  ASTRONOMYPrimaryEducationSecondaryEducationTertiaryEducationResearchSciencePublicOutreachStimulates imaginationIntroduces scienceGateway to sciencesand engineeringAnalytic skillsInternational teamsCareers in technologyManagementEntry to world-class researchand cutting-edge technologyMost approachable scienceWide interest
  23. 23.    Elements  –  Long-­‐term  Vision  –  Goals  for  2010  –  2020    –  Strategy  includes  –  Integrated  strategic  phased  approach  –  Driven  by  regional  demand    –  Emphasis  Sub-­‐Saharan  Africa  –  Mobilize  volunteers  –  Professional  +  amateur  astronomers    –  Teachers    –  Science  outreach  experts  –  Exploit  new  possibiliLes  –  e.g.  Astrobuses,  roboLc  networks      –  ImplementaLon  Roadmap    –  Create  IAU  “Office  of  Astronomy  for  Development”  –  Kevin  Govender,  Director    IAU  STRATEGIC  PLAN    “ASTRONOMY  FOR  DEVELOPMENT”  
  24. 24. •  1996  DACST  white  paper  on  role  of  pure  science  within  the  new  democracy:    –  “It  is  important  to  maintain  a  basic  competence  in  ‘flagship’  sciences  such  as  physics  and  astronomy  for  cultural  reasons.Not  to  offer  them  would  be  to  take  a  negaLve  view  of  our  future  –  the  view  that  we  are  a  second-­‐class  naLon,  chained  forever  to  the  treadmill  of  feeding  and  clothing  ourselves”RATIONALE  OF  SOUTH  AFRICA  FOR  ASTRONOMY  ScienceCultureTechnologyINSPIRATION
  25. 25. SOUTHERN AFRICAN LARGE TELESCOPE, SALTLargest single optical telescopein southern hemisphere
  26. 26. Most sensitive cmtelescope in south64 antennas by 2015Exciting scientific programmeplannnedKAT7 MEERKAT
  27. 27. SQUARE  KILOMETER  ARRAY  (SKA)  NEXT-­‐GENERATION  RADIO  TELESCOPE        •  Cost  >  2  billion  Euro  –  Partnership  of  >10  countries  in  5  conLnents  •  RevoluLonary  design  drives  ICT  &  communicaLons  technologies    •  Dual  sites  –  South  Africa  –  Africa  –  Australia  –  New  Zealand        •  ICONIC  DEVELOPMENT  PROJECT  FOR  AFRICA    –  South  Africa  +  –  Botswana,  Ghana,  Kenya,  Madagascar,  MauriLus,  Mozambique,  Namibia  and  Zambia      WILL BE POWERFUL ENGINE FOR GLOBAL DEVELOPMENT
  28. 28. ASTRONOMY  CAN  STIMULATE  PRIDE  AND  SELF-­‐CONFIDENCE  THE  “WORLD  CUP”  EFFECT  e.g. Mercury, Durban, 6 Feb 2013
  29. 29. WITNESS  –  PROMINENT  AFRICAN  STATESWOMAN  NALEDI PANDORSOUTH AFRICA MINISTER SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY 2009 - 2012
  30. 30. EXTRA  WITNESS  –  PRESIDENT  OF  CHINA          –  “Astronomy  is  a  crucial  field  of  basic  research.  We  will  make  larger  and  larger  investments  in  such  a  field….  that  will  benefit  humankind.”  –  “Public  outreach  should  be  given  equal  emphasis  as  scienLfic  research……  to  inspire  the  creaLvity  for  science  and  technological  innovaLon  among  the  public.”  •  President  Xi  Jinping,  21  August  2012    
  31. 31. SUPPORT  FROM  EUROPEAN  PARLIAMENT      •  Wri{en  DeclaraLon  45/2011  of  European  Parliament  15  March  2012  (signed  by  394  MEPs)    –  RECOGNISING  THAT  further  European  involvement  in  African  radio  astronomy  can  become  a  powerful  driver  of  socioeconomic  growth  in  Africa    –  SUPPORTS  the  development  of  science  capacity  in  Africa  through  greater  investment  in  research  infrastructures,  with  par4cular  focus  on  radio  astronomy  
  32. 32. SUPPORT  FROM  AFRICAN  UNION      •  African  Union  DeclaraLon  (AU  Assembly  18th  ordinary  session  29  -­‐30  Jan  2012)  –  STRESSES  the  significant  poten4al  of  investment  in  African  Radio  Astronomy  ini4a4ves,  such  as  the  planned  African  Very  Long  Baseline  Interferometry  (VLBI)  Network,  to  rapidly  enhance  Africa’s  science  and  technology  capaci;es,  and  therefore;  –  PROPOSES  the  inclusion  of  Radio  Astronomy  as  a  priority  focus  area  for  Africa’s  interna;onal  science  and  technology  partnerships  
  33. 33. PROPOSITION  1    ASTRONOMY  IS  UNIQUE  TOOL  FOR  FURTHERING  GLOBAL  DEVELOPMENT    
  34. 34. HUMAN  CAPACITY  BUILDING        START YOUNG!!!
  35. 35.                        UNIVERSE  AWARENESS  (UNAWE)  Astronomy-­‐based  program  with  social  goals    •  Use  INSPIRATION  and  FUN  of  astronomy  to  –  Introduce  excitement  of  science  • Demonstrate  power  of  raLonal  thought  • MoLvate  development  of  language  and  numeric  skills  •  Use  PERSPECTIVE  of  astronomy  to  –  Broaden  children’s  minds  • SLmulate  sense  of  internaLonalism,  tolerance,  respect  at  formaLve  age  Exposes DISADVANTAGED young children (4 – 10) toINSPIRATIONAL aspects of astronomy
  36. 36. 56 UNAWE Countries(6 of them EU-UNAWE)UNAWE  NOW  IN  56  COUNTRIES  500+ Educators/Teachers/AstronomersFantastic work by UNAWE International Project ManagersCarolina Ödman 2005 – 2010Pedro Russo 2010 – 2013More about UNAWE later
  37. 37. HIGH  PRIESTS  OF  MODERN  SOCIETY  THE  ECONOMISTS    UNPOPULAR  QUOTATION  WITHIN  THE  CHURCH  OF  ECONOMISTS  BY  SUPER-­‐HIGH  PRIESTS    –  “The  only  funcLon  of  economic  forecasLng  is  to  make  astrology  look  respectable”  • John  Kenneth  Galbraith  (1988)  – Ezra  Solomon  (1984)  
  38. 38. WITNESS  -­‐    AN  ECONOMIST    HIGH  PRIEST       PROF. JAMES HECKMAN, ECONOMICS NOBEL PRIZE 2000
  39. 39. WITNESS  -­‐  A  POLITICAL  HIGH  PRIEST  PRESIDENT  OBAMA  –  2013  STATE  OF  THE  UNION  
  40. 40. EARTH FROM SATURN (CASSINI)MUCH  MORE  THAN  JUST  ECONOMIC  EFFECTIVENESS    AWARENESS  OF  UNIVERSE  GIVES  PERSPECTIVE  CAN  HELP  COMBAT  FANATICISM        "Fana;c  ethnic,  religious  or  na;onal  iden;fica;ons  are  difficult  to  support  when  we  see  our  planet  as  a  fragile,  blue  crescent  fading  to  become  an  inconspicuous  point  of  light  against  the  basLon  and  citadel  of  the  stars.  “                CARL  SAGAN            Remember  War  of  the  Worlds  epilogue                      
  41. 41. EARTH FROM SATURN (CASSINI)EARTH FROM SATURN (CASSINI)
  42. 42. CultureINSPIRATIONTechnologyScience•  1.  ASTRONOMY  IS  A  UNIQUE  TOOL  FOR  FURTHERING  GLOBAL  DEVELOPMENT  •  2.  USING  ASTRONOMY  TO  MOTIVATE  YOUNG  CHILDREN  IS  ONE  OF  THE  MOST  EFFECTIVE  WAYS  OF  BUILDING  CAPACITY      PROPOSITIONS  DEMONSTRATED  
  43. 43. CARL  SAGAN  -­‐  SCIENTIFIC  AND  SOCIAL  VISIONARY COSMOS TV SERIES 1980UPDATED WITH SOME NEW RADIO IMAGES BY GMTRANSITION TOWONDERFULRADIOGALAXIES
  44. 44. CARL  SAGAN  -­‐  SCIENTIFIC  AND  SOCIAL  VISIONARY COSMOS TV SERIES 1980UPDATED BY GM WITH SOME NEW VLA RADIO IMAGES
  45. 45. THANKS TO EVERYONE FOR COMINGPARTICULARLYTHE ORGANISERS AND SPEAKERS

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