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Collaboratively Answering Australia’s Geoscience Questions.

Shake, Rattle and Roll: ANU on AuSIS

An ANU-coordinated program that will establish a network of 40 seismometers in schools across Australia by 2014 will be launched at Melrose High School tomorrow by Senator Kate Lundy. Melrose High School is one of the pilot sites in AuScope’s Australian Seismometers in Schools (AuSIS) network. The AuSIS program started in January, with four test instruments installed in the ACT, including two in high schools – one in Melrose High School and the other in Daramalan College.

Dr Natalie Balfour from the Research School of Earth Sciences, part of the ANU College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences, coordinates the program.

“The program allows students to apply what they learn in earth sciences and physics to what they record with the seismometer. It inspires the next generation of geoscientists. They’re amazed at how they can record seismic waves at their school from earthquakes as far away as Chile,” Dr Balfour said.

“Earthquakes that we don’t hear about on the news happen all the time – in the ocean, in unpopulated areas – and students can raise community awareness of regional earthquakes. They get so excited when they check the monitors to see if there’s been an earthquake – or if it was just a car or truck going past.” ANU Professor Malcolm Sambridge, AuSIS program director, said the data that will be sent from the network of schools to international data centres in near real time will help to image the earth’s interior in three dimensions. The data will also be accessible to seismologists the world over.

Dr Bob Haydon, CEO of AuScope, said the project will link into national infrastructure for earth observation and monitoring. “Perhaps the most under-appreciated of the characteristics of the Australian crust is its stability. Australian communities will require increasingly better understanding of stability and spatial positioning in order to develop many of our new resource systems whether water, minerals or energy related,” he said.

“Strategies to utilise these resources must be underpinned by the highest quality geo-scientific information, which will be only delivered through improved monitoring networks. Only then can decisions be made that will foster sustainable development of the resource into the future, whilst delivering the highest possible value to society and the environment.”
The network is part of the Australian Geophysical Observatory Program (AGOS) and is funded under the Education Investment Fund. AuScope was awarded $23m for the AGOS Program and $1.7m of the overall investment has been directed to the Australian Education Observatory that runs the AuSIS project.

To arrange interviews with Dr Natalie Balfour, Professor Malcolm Sambridge and Dr Bob Haydon, contact Helen Keogh on 0402 401 735.

For media assistance: Sarina Talip ANU media – 02 6125 7988 / 0416 249 241

WHAT: Launch of the AuScope AuSIS Seismometers in Schools Network
WHEN: 10am, Thursday 31 May
WHERE: Melrose High School, Marr Street, Pearce

 


Click here to download: ANU AuSIS media alert

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National Observing System to Probe Earth: Minister Carr on AGOS

Joint media release with the Parliamentary Secretary for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government, the Hon Maxine McKew MP

The Australian Government will invest $23 million in a new Australian Geophysical Observing System (AGOS) to increase our understanding of the earth’s crust and its resources.

AuScope Limited, a consortium of 23 universities, government bodies and research organisations, will develop the revolutionary system.

Australian Government funding is through the Education Investment Fund (EIF) Round 3.

The AGOS will have infrastructure across Australia. Key sites will include Macquarie University in North Ryde NSW, the University of Melbourne in Parkville and the Australian National University (ANU) in Canberra.

“The AGOS will be the first national subsurface observatory capable of monitoring the physical state of the Australian continent,” Senator Carr said.

“Spreading AGOS across Australia will maximise scientific returns and support for the massive geo-engineering projects now being considered – such as deep geothermal drilling.

“Australia is already a recognised world leader in geoscience, and this investment will help us remain at the forefront of this increasingly important field.”

The Government’s $23 million investment is leveraging a further $82 million from the project partners: AuScope, the University of Melbourne, the ANU, the University of Queensland, the University of Adelaide, Curtin University, Geoscience Australia, Primary Industry Resources SA, Geoscience Victoria, Petratherm, and Geological Survey Queensland.

“This project is an outstanding example of strategic collaboration across sectors,” Senator Carr said.

Federal Member for Bennelong, Maxine McKew, said Macquarie University will host the Geophysical Education Observatory component of the AuScope AGOS EIF project.

“Macquarie University is the perfect location to host one of AGOS’s major sites,” Ms McKew said.
Macquarie’s role will include developing real-time digital connections to AGOS through the seismometers-in-schools program.

“This will be a unique opportunity to integrate scientific research and education by engaging students, teachers and the public in an experiment that is going on across the country,” said Ms McKew.

“I look forward to seeing the benefits this project will bring to my local community,” Ms McKew said.

The Government has committed more than $4 billion from the EIF since 2008, to build a modern, productive, internationally competitive Australian economy. EIF is supporting world-leading, strategically-focused infrastructure investments that will transform Australian tertiary education and research.

To learn more about the EIF, go to www.deewr.gov.au/eif.

Media contacts: Patrick Pantano, Senator Carr’s Office, 0417 181 936 Erin Dale, Ms McKew’s Office, 0418 339 582


Click here to download: Minister Carr’s AGOS press release

 

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AuScope wins $23million EIF bid to establish AGOS

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Successful EIF bid announcement

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Second side of telescope triangle completed

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Second side of telescope triangle completed
The University of Tasmania

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VIC’s Mineral deposits available for the world to see

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VIC’s Mineral deposits available for the world to see
Victorian Department of Primary Industries

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New telescope dish installation at UTAS MT Pleasant Observatory

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New telescope dish installation at UTAS MT Pleasant Observatory
The University of Tasmania

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Victorian Geologists Lead on International Projects

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Victorian Geologists Lead on International Projects
GeoScience Victoria, Department of Primary Industries

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Telescope has great ‘fringe’ benefits: UTAS on AuScope VLBI milestone

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UTAS telescope has great fringe benefits
The UTAS Communications and Media Office, 2011

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Earth science gets $43m boost

Australian scientists will be able to scratch much deeper beneath the earth’s surface following the launch of a $43 million geoscience body…

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