Unwin Radar

Unwin Radar HF antenna array at Awarua Station

Unwin Radar HF antenna array at Awarua Station. Photo 2007 Alex Glennie

A little ways beyond the ‘new’ (1940) receiving station on the former Awarua Radio site is the Unwin Radar, part of a scientific radar array known as the Super Dual Auroral Radar Network (SuperDARN).

SuperDARN is a network for studying the upper atmosphere and ionosphere, and operates in the High Frequency (HF) bands between 8 and 22 MHz.

The radar and associated research provides greater understanding of atmospheric weather, to assist with weather prediction, prediction of telecommunication interference and provide a better understanding of the effects of atmospheric magnetic fields on power grid management.

The facility is operated by La Trobe University and was named after Bob Unwin, a pioneer in auroral radar research, who first proposed the concept behind the project in the 1960s.

A closer view of some of the log periodic aerials in the Unwin Radar system for studying space weather

A closer view of some of the log periodic aerials in the Unwin Radar system for studying space weather. Photo: NankaiOwn work, CC BY-SA 3.0

Plaque commemorating the Unwin Radar at Awarua Station

Plaque commemorating the Unwin Radar at Awarua Station. Photo 2007 Alex Glennie