All levels of the community will benefit from the combined efforts of the State and Federal Government to attract international support for the construction of the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) in WA, Professor Alan Robson, Vice-Chancellor of The University of Western Australia said today.
"The reaffirmation of the commitment of the State and Federal Governments by Premier Alan Carpenter and the Federal Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research, Kim Carr is most welcome," Professor Robson said.
He was speaking after the opening of an International SKA Forum - a gathering of leading international scientists, industry and politicians - in Perth today.
Australia is one of two bidders for the next generation radio telescope. If Australia is successful, the telescope would be located in Western Australia's Murchison region.
"There is no doubt that all levels of our community are already benefiting as we seek to construct one of the most significant scientific ventures of this century," Professor Robson said. "School and university students; industry, business, local and indigenous communities will continue to reap the benefits of developing technologies, scientific discovery and importantly scholarship as the project proceeds."
Professor Robson said the SKA team, lead by UWA Professors Peter Quinn and Lister Stavely-Smith, both Premiers' Fellows, working with CSIRO and Curtin University of Technology collaborators, were already making a mark on the national and international stage.
"The significant international attention now being focussed on Australia and in particular Western Australia is a measure of the level of excitement this project is creating not only scientifically but also technologically," Professor Robson said.
Janine MacDonald (UWA Public Affairs) 61 8 6488 5563 / 0432 637 716