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Indigenous Astronomy Lecture

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Date: Friday 1 June 2018
Venue: AMDC 301 Lecture Theatre Hawthorn Campus

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The rapidly growing world of Indigenous astronomy presented by Dr Duane Hamacher and Krystal De Napoli

The subject of Indigenous astronomy has skyrocketed in recent years all around the globe. A constant stream of emerging research is changing what we think we know about Aboriginal knowledge systems in Australia and the number of Aboriginal students studying astrophysics is rapidly growing. This lecture will introduce you to one of these students, Kamilaroi woman and astrophysics student Krystal De Napoli, and the research she and Dr Duane Hamacher are conducting with other Aboriginal researchers on topics ranging from Moon haloes, Sun Dogs, and supernovae to the antiquity of deep time oral traditions based on astronomical and geological evidence - even the official naming of Aboriginal stars by the IAU. This talk will explore the many ways in which Indigenous Australians encoded scientific information in their knowledge systems and some of the ways in which they pass this knowledge to successive generations.

Dr Duane Hamacher is an astronomer and Senior Research Fellow in the Monash Indigenous Studies Centre and an Adjunct Fellow in astrophysics at the University of Southern Queensland. He works closely with Indigenous elders and communities across Australia, Southeast Asia, the South Pacific, and Central America to learn about their astronomical knowledge and traditions.

Krystal De Napoli is a Kamilaroi woman undertaking an undergraduate degree in astrophysics at Monash University. In 2018 she will be commencing a cadetship with the CSIRO's Data61 team, and is working closely with Dr Duane Hamacher and Indigenous Elders in their research into Indigenous astronomical traditions. 

This Lecture is being co-organised by the Moondani Toombadool Centre and the Centre for Astrophysics and Supercomputing supporting National Reconciliation Week 2018.