Practical Radio astronomy techniques and technology a tool for astronomy education in Ghana

Alexander Akoto-Danso, Dr. Theophilus Ansah, Dr Benedicta Woode – Ghana Space Science and Technology Institute/Rhodes University

In recent years, there has been a growing interest in radio astronomy as a tool for astronomy education in Ghana. Radio astronomy is a unique and powerful tool for studying the universe, as it allows us to observe objects and phenomena that are not visible in other spectrum. This is particularly useful in Ghana, since currently a 32-meter satellite dish has been converted into a radio telescope.
The study aims to report practical ways radio astronomy techniques and technology has been used to enhance astronomy education in Ghana. The report focuses on the use of low-cost and easily accessible equipment, such as Table Top Radio Telescope (TTRT) (software-defined radios) and small dish antennas; AVN Skills Transfer Telescope (ASTT) which are used to observe radio sources in the sky.

Through the DARA big data project, participants have been trained in the use of these instruments to collect, calibrate, image and analyse astronomy data. Participants were also introduced to the use of computer simulations and virtual observatories.

The use of these hands-on learning experiences has been used to promote scientific literacy and interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) during community engagements and outreaches. These efforts has been successful through collaboration with the DARA project, OAD, IAU, SKA.

The study demonstrates the potential use of these instruments and techniques as powerful tools for enhancing astronomy education in Ghana. This provides a unique and engaging way to explore the universe and to encourage the development of STEM education in Ghana.


Practical Radio astronomy techniques and technology a tool for astronomy education in Ghana