Site Characterisation Working Group (SCWG) (Disbanded)

The SCWG is composed of 10 members, with representatives from the two candidate sites as well as the ASTRON institute, the chairs of the SPDO Simulations and Operations Working Groups, and other experts involved in site characterisation. It will be chaired by the Site Engineer from the SKA Program Development Office, and the SPDO Project Engineer and Director will be ex-officio members of the SCWG.

The SCWG will assist the Site Engineer in the coordination of the additional studies needed to further characterise the two candidate sites before the final selection is made. These additional studies are laid out in PrepSKA Work Package 3 and the principal outcomes are expected to be:

  • A statement on the current levels of Radio Frequency Interference in the candidate countries;
  • A statement of the measures taken at government and local level to protect radio astronomy measurements with the SKA at each site;
  • A statement on the effects of ionospheric and tropospheric turbulence on measurements with the SKA at each site;
  • An optimum array configuration for the SKA in each location, consistent with the science case;
  • A statement on the potential influences of the physical characteristics of each site on the telescope design, operations and costs;
  • A statement of the infrastructure deployment costs and timescales, and operational models for each site; and
  • A statement on the sustainability of the sites for science on the long term in the face of potential RFI threats.

Task Forces may be established by the SCWG to focus on particular areas of activity, for example the Radio Frequency Monitoring campaign, and Regulatory Issues.


Albert-Jan Boonstra
The Netherlands
Brian Boyle
Australia Telescope National Facility
Peter Dewdney
Bernie Fanaroff
SKA South Africa
South Africa
Leonid Gruvits
Joint Institute for VLBI in Europe (JIVE)
The Netherlands
Ken Kellermann
Rob Millenaar (Chair)
Richard Schilizzi
Michelle Storey
Yervant Terzian (Vice-Chair)
Cornell University
Adrian Tiplady
South Africa
Wim van Driel

Task forces:

Chair: Rob Millenaar

RFI monitoring
Chair: Rob Millenaar

RQZ and regulatory issues monitoring
Chair: Wim van Driel

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