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Antennas for Radio Telescopes – 2016

Part of the European School of Antennas

Sponsored by Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), SKA South AfricaTICRA, CST, IEEE AP-S, IEEE South Africa Section, Stellenbosch University

November 21 − 25, Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Stellenbosch University, South Africa.


The first edition of the new ESoA course on Antennas for Radio Telescopes will be organized in Stellenbosch, South Africa in November 2016.

The course will aim to provide a broad and detailed look at the specific challenges facing antenna designers and others working in radio astronomy applications.  In addition to topics covering specific antenna technologies used in modern instruments, background on basic radio astronomical methods and performance metrics will be provided, as well as an introduction to some basic calibration and imaging techniques.  This should provide the participants with a more detailed and fundamental understanding of what is required from the antenna systems to yield the best possible instruments for different applications.

Stellenbosch is a vibrant student town within 50 km drive of Cape Town with it’s world class beaches and the iconic table mountain.  The main feature of the town is the historic university, surrounded by winelands and mountains.  A strong Dutch colonial influence is still visible in the architecture of many of the older buildings, with the oak lined streets giving rise to the nickname “Eikestad”.  The town center is easily navigable by foot, while there are plenty of tours or self drive options available to explore the surrounding region.


The basic outline of the course and main teachers involved is given below.  This is still subject to change,and more details will be posted as they emerge.

Day 1: Introduction to radio astronomy techniques and instruments (Prof. David Davidson, Stellenbosch University, South Africa)

Day 2: Reflector antennas in radio astronomy (Dr. Peter Meincke, TICRA, Denmark)

Day 3: Dense aperture arrays (Prof. Marianna Ivashina and Dr. Rob Maaskant, Chalmers Univeristy of Technology, Sweden)

Day 4: Sparse array antennas (Prof. Christophe Craeye, University of Louvain, Belgium)

Day 5: Calibration and system aspects (Prof. Oleg Smirnov, Rhodes University, South Africa)

We have applied for ECSA CPD registration for South African professional engineers attending and completing the course.


Physical address:

Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering,
Stellenbosch University
Cnr Banghoek Road & Joubert Street
South Africa
Coordinates: -33.928219,18.867139


Registration for the course is now closed.

The fees for participants from non-profit institutions is R7000 (Eur440) for participants from South Africa (Europe), and double that for participants from for-profit companies.  Further details are given on the registration form, which must be filled in and mailed to Dirk de Villiers (with proof of payment) for registration to be confirmed.

The registration fees include all study material, coffee breaks, snacks, and lunch for every day of the course, and a social dinner.


The venue is within walking distance from the Stellenbosch town center. The town center offers many hotel and guest house accommodation options. See e.g. and

Limited parking is available at the venue.


Prof. Dirk de Villiers, Stellenbosch University
Dr. Albert Lysko, CSIR