We are deeply saddened by the news of the sudden death of Prof. Steve Rawlings (Oxford University). Steve made a major contribution to the activities of ASTRON ‑ until recently he was chair of the ASTRON Scientific Advisory Committee and a vocal proponent for the adoption of aperture array technologies in next generation radio telescopes, such as the Square Kilometre Array (SKA). Steve played a huge role in maturing the international SKA project ‑ both scientifically and politically. He was one of the main architects of the scientific case, chair of the European SKA Consortium and a member of the SKA Science & Engineering Committee. He had previously served as the international SKA project scientist and was active in the Science Working Group. His advocacy of the SKA project was absolutely crucial in convincing the various national funding agencies around the world to seriously engage with the project ‑ those
efforts recently led to the established of the new SKA Organisation Ltd.

Published by the editorial team, 17 January 2012

Steve was also a great deal of fun to be around ‑ he enjoyed life, was open, sensitive and caring ‑ he greatly enjoyed the company of others. He had time for everyone he met, and was a great mentor and role model for undergraduate and graduate students alike. His untimely death leaves many people here in Dwingeloo stunned, and contemplating a very heavy and untimely loss. Our thoughts are also with Steve's wife and family.


Photo: Prof. Steve Rawlings, copyright ASTRON.


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On June 13-17, the LOFAR Family Meeting took place in Cologne. After two years LOFAR researchers could finally meet in person again. The meeting brings together LOFAR users and researchers to share new scientific results.

Our renewed ‘Melkwegpad’ (Milky Way Path) is finished! The new signs have texts in Dutch on the one side and in English on the other side. The signs concerning planets have a small, 3D printed model of that planet in their centre.
#Melkwegpad @RTVDrenthe

Daily image of the week

The background drawing shows how the subband correlator calculates the array correlation matrix. In the upper left the 4 UniBoard2s we used. The two ACM plots in the picture show that the phase differences of the visibilities vary from 0 to 360 degrees.

Daily image of the week: Testing with the Dwingeloo Test Station (DTS)
One of the key specifications of LOFAR2.0 is measuring using the low- and the highband antenna at the same time. For this measurement we used 9 lowband antenna and 3 HBA tiles.