Ghana launched its first radio astronomy observatory on Thursday, 24th of August 2017 in an effort to widen knowledge of African skies, catalyze skills development, and attract scientists. A 32-meter wide (104-foot) radio telescope, converted from an old telecommunications dish, forms the heart of the observatory, which is in Kuntunse, about an hour from the capital Accra. This event was graced by the Acting Director and WAROAD Coordinator, Dr. Bonaventure Okere along with Professor A. E. Chukwude from the Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Nigeria at the official commissioning of the Ghana 32m Radio Telescope.
Previously a mainstay of communication on and from the continent, large telecommunications dishes have been made redundant since the introduction of undersea cables down Africa’s coasts. Astronomers are eyeing these dishes with plans to turn them into radio telescopes. Ghana’s dish, donated to the government by Vodafone, is the first of a number of planned conversions. Ultimately, these dishes will form a web of telescopes, known as the African VLBI Network. With its widely spaced dishes, the network will be able to observe the skies that straddle the southern and northern hemispheres, and provide a training ground for scientists and engineers on the continent.
Dark Skies Awareness 2017. Astronomy activities was recently held an Regnat Secondary School, June/July 2017in Nsukka, on Dark Skies Awareness” which is one of 11 Global Cornerstone Projects during the 2009 International Year of Astronomy (IYA2009) . “Dark Skies are a Universal Resource” is one of 9 key programs during IYA2009. The goal of “Dark Skies” is to raise the level of public knowledge about adverse impacts of excess artificial lighting on local environments and help more people appreciate the ongoing loss of a dark night sky for much of the world’s population. Nigeria participated on Dark sky outreach program for the year 2017. For more pictures, Click Here and here for more information
Ghana Planetarium Science Centre: Activities was carried out in April 2017 : The Ghana Planetarium is aimed : For children of school age, adults, to improve the low level activities in science literacy and knowledge; by developing the quality of their life and health by educating their influence in superstitious beliefs, and for unhealthy mistrust or misunderstanding of science. click here for pictures.
Ghana Space Science and Technology Institute (GSSTI) participated in the Partial Eclipse that occurred on the 1st of September, 2016, The Eclipse started at 6:30am and reached its maximum point at around 7.20am. To find out more about their report (pictures inclusive), click Here in English and Here in French.
Astronomy Activities in Burkina Faso by Kam Sie Zechariah (Burkina Faso Country Coordinator).
The coordinator reported their recent outreach program by receiving the Technical High School LTO at the Université de Ouagadougou, Atmospheric physics Laboratory, Burkina Faso. The activities carried out includes: Presentation on Astro-animation and Star field of Blue horizontal-branch (BHB), presentation/donation of Galileoscope to Technical High School LTO, A Science Observation of Moon Craters, and the 9th of May 2016 incredible image of the Transit of Mercury. Click HERE in English and HERE in French to find out more about these activities.
Asteroid Day is a global awareness campaign where people from around the world come together to learn about asteroids, the impact hazard they may pose, and what we can do to protect our planet, families, communities, and future generations from future asteroid impacts. Asteroid Day is held every 30th of June. We hereby encourage all Country Coordinators to Participate/join the program. Please feel free to learn more by clicking here and here.
WEST AFRICAN INTERNATIONAL SUMMER SCHOOL FOR YOUNG ASTRONOMERS (WAISSYA), NSUKKA 2015 GENERAL REPORT CAN BE ACCESSED HERE IN Word doc and HERE IN Pdf format WHILE YOU CAN ALSO ACCESS THE DOCUMENTS ON GOOGLE DOCS Here.
IAU OAD Regional Offices Meeting (March 2016)
Report on 3rd Face-to-Face Meeting of Regional Offices of Astronomy for Development 2-4 March 2016, South African Astronomical Observatory, Cape Town The Office of Astronomy for Development (OAD) has, at present, nine Regional Offices and Language Expertise Centers around the world can be assessed at Here