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LOFAR4SW reaches an important milestone

Submitter: Carla Baldovin
Description: The project LOFAR4SW (funded by the EC program H2020) will deliver a fully documented design to enable LOFAR to be used as a space weather instrument, in parallel to radio astronomy observations. In 2019, the project went through two main reviews: the Preliminary Design Review in Cardiff (January), and the mid-term review in Brussels (September).

Recently (March 30 and 31) LOFAR4SW achieved another important milestone: the Detailed Design Review (DDR), originally planned to be a face to face meeting at ASTRON. However, when the strict corona measurements were announced, the meeting was changed into a videoconference.

The big question was if such a review could work in this format. Happily, the answer is yes, the meeting worked very well. Although we had a very tight schedule, the panel chair (André Gunst) made sure that the main issues were discussed.
The review focused on the design of the hardware (WP5 - ASTRON) and software (WP6 - Chalmers), the system design work package (WP4 - UKRI) was also involved. Despite the strange circumstances of the review; not only being at home but for many of us having also children running around, the efficiency of the meeting was not affected. Our team is satisfied by the constructive and open discussions that took place during the two days of the review.

The LOFAR4SW team is grateful of the dedication showed by the review panel: André Gunst (ASTRON), David Prinsloo (ASTRON), Menno Norden (ASTRON), Hans van der Marel (ASTRON), Mark Oude Alink (University of Twente), Federico Perini (INAF), and Henrik Olofsson (Onsala Space Observatory). Our team is now digesting the findings and recommendations from the panel and putting in place the actions agreed at the meeting. LOFAR4SW will continuing maturing the design towards the Critical Design Review, scheduled in February 2021.
Copyright: C. Baldovin
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