IEEE AFRICON is the premier biennial event of the IEEE in Africa. This flagship conference provides a platform for academics and industry professionals to share ideas and present their latest research. Co-sponsored by the IEEE Region 8 and the IEEE South Africa Section, Africon 2013 was hosted in the island of Mauritius.

In order to strengthen the science connections between Europe and Africa and connect URSI and IEEE the URSI commissions B, E and J organize a special 1,5 day session during AFRICON 2013 entitled "LARGE SCALE SCIENCE PROJECTS: EUROPE-AFRICA CONNECTS", emphasizing each of the scientific commissions.

The event was generally considered extremely useful and as intended, an important step to enlarge Radio science (including Radio Astronomy) collaboration between Europe and Africa. As this mini-URSI event was held in connection to the Africon event excellent contacts were established between the Africon organizers which emphasized the Engineering Sciences associated with IEEE region 8 (which includes Europe and Africa), URSI and the framework of RadioNet.

The program covered an interesting and wide range of talks relevant to EVN and its planned African counterpart AVN, the SKA and, technical and astronomical presentations from other techno-scientific activities in Africa with active participation and discussions.

Further to that, we organized a visit to the Multi-frequency Interferometry Telescope for Radio Astronomy (MITRA)-site and discussed connections between the project and so-called Aperture Array developments in the context of the African-European Radio-Astronomy Platform (AERAP, see


Group picture of the attendees at the first day of the URSI-BEJ session


Visit of the MRT/MITRA site on Mauritius


In South-Africa the event was also in the media.

The program of the meeting can be found here. The presentations of the meeting are available in PDF:

  • Takalani Nemaungani - African-European Radio Astronomy Platform - PPT
  • Howard C. Reader - New robust approaches to designing large radio research instruments - PDF
  • Per-Simon Kildal - Some Reflector and Feed Antenna Inventions that Made a Difference - PPT
  • Girish Kumar Beeharry - The Multifrequency Interferometry Telescope for Radio Astronomy (MITRA) - PDF
  • Isak Theron - Towards an optics design for the SKA - PDF
  • Jan Geralt bij de Vaate - Aperture Arrays for the Square Kilometre Array - PPT
  • Jaisridevi Shibchurn - A prototype dual polarised log periodic antenna array for the MITRA - PDF
  • David Giri - Electromagnetic (EM) Effects Control Using Topological Concepts - PDF
  • Franz Schlagenhaufer - RFI assessment of Photovoltaic Modules for Radio Astronomy Applications - PDF
  • Nikola Djuric - The concept of the SEMONT monitoring system and its influence on the EM pollution - PPT
  • Domingos Barbosa - Design, Sustainability and Environmental considerations for new African observatories:
    the MRAO example - PDF
  • Mark Bentum - A Large Ultra-long Wavelength Radio Astronomy instrument in Space - PDF
  • Rob Millenaar - Considerations for the optimal Radio Astronomy site - PPT
  • Dominique Ingala - An Overview of the MITRA Radio Telescope Signal Chain - PDF
  • Stefan Wijnholds - Computing Cost of Sensitivity and Survey Speed for Aperture Array and Phased Array Feed Systems - PDF
  • Michael Garrett - Radio Astronomy transformed: Wide-field antenna developments past, present and future - PDF
  • Justin Jonas - The SKA Africa Project: MeerKAT and More - PDF
  • Nandita Roopa/Sagar Pirthee - Solar flares in linear and circular polarisation - PDF
  • Oleg Smirnov - Performance limits of future instruments and surveys: ghosts, surprises and simulations - PDF
  • Arpad Szomoru - From tape reel to intercontinental lightpaths: technical developments in the EVN - PDF
  • Roy Booth - An African VLBI Network (AVN) and its challenges: engineering and its scientific - PDF
  • Michael Lindqvist - VLBI science in the EVN, now and in the future - PDF
  • Sergio Colafrancesco - An high-frequency radio polarization look at the sky: from Africa to deep space