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Girls Day 2011

Submitter: Annette de Boer
Description: On 14 April, ASTRON, NOVA and JIVE hosted 32 girls from the Celeanum gymnasium in Zwolle and Hondsrug College in Emmen for an unforgettable Girls Day in Dwingeloo. Organised internationally, Girlsday gives girls the opportunity to visit technically oriented companies and participate in activities. The aim is to give girls a positive image of technical subjects and to encourage more girls to pursue technical education and training. Presentations and activities here in Dwingeloo were divided into a technology workshop and an astronomy workshop.

The technology workshop consisted of blowing up a marshmallow cookie and soldering an electronics package to produce a functioning marquee of the word LOFAR. Participants also measured the signals of several radio stations with High-Band LOFAR antennas, and thus learned about signal composition from two antennas. The girls, who came from the second and third class, participated as real researchers and produced good results.

In the astronomy workshop, the girls were paired up to chat live with female astronomers around world. The aim was to learn as much as possible from each astronomer to incorporate into a drawing of her. The girls were also able to take measurements with the Dwingeloo telescope. They were impressed by the instrument and, probably for their first time, listened to the signal of a pulsar.

At the end of the day the girls tested their knowledge of radio astronomy with a fun quiz, and winners received a nice cup or hat. All in all a successful day for the visitors!
Copyright: HJS
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