National Astronomical Research Institute of Thailand (NARIT) (Public Organization), Ministry of Higher Education, Science, Research and Innovation (MHESI), Thailand, jointly hosted a ceremony to sign on a document for Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Universiti Malaya in Malaysia via online on 29 June 2021. This MoU has been issued to initiate an official close cooperative relationship with a view to the further scientific and technological development of both organizations in the field of radio astronomy and geodesy, and any other fields of activity that may be of mutual interest, in particular as countries in South-East Asia. In the ceremony, Dr. Saran Poshyachinda, the executive director of NARIT, and Professor Dr. Noorsaadah Abd Rahman, the deputy vice chancellor of Universiti Malaya, on behalf at each organization signed on the MoU document finally. While witnesses from both sides were represented by Associate Professor Dr. Boonrucksar Soonthornthum – a former Executive Director of NARIT and then now serves as an Advisor at NARIT, Professor Dr. Ismail Yusoff - the Dean of the Faculty of Science of University Malaya, Dr. Phrudth Jaroenjittichai - Acting Director of Operations and Engineering for Radio Observatories, Associate Professor Dr. Zamri Zainal Abidin - the head of the Radio Cosmology Laboratory, and Dr. Juan Carlos Algaba Marcos and Dr. Koichiro Sugiyama - joint-coordinators of this activity, with other organizing committee members and approximately 30 participants in total.
27 March 2021
On March 27th, 2021, NARIT hosted the annual “NARIT AstroFest 2021” at Princess Sirindhorn AstroPark in Chiang Mai. Together with the National Science Museum (NSM), the new exhibition zones “Astronomy Insight” and “Northern Science Square” were launched at the event, along with featured activities including “Enjoy Science Careers” and public stargazing later at night.
19 March 2021
For the very first time on March 19th, 2021, a soccer friendly match kicked off between Team US Consulate General Chiang Mai and Team NARIT to mark the milestone on enhanced collaborations between the two parties. Consul General Sean K. O’Neill and NARIT Executive Director Saran Poshyachinda presided over the match, among vibrant players and fans of both teams.
15 February 2021
H.E. Emilio de Miguel Calabia – Ambassador of Spain to Thailand called on H.E Prof. Dr. Anek Laothamatas, Minister of Higher Education, Science, Research and Innovation of Thailand on 15 February 2021. Among Team Thailand was Dr. Saran Poshyachinda – NARIT Executive Director to discuss NARIT’s Radio Astronomical Network and Geodesy for Development: RANGD, which includes the current construction of 40-metre Thai National Radio Telescope: TNRT in Chiang Mai and 13-metre VLBI Geodetic Observing System, VGOS. NARIT implements the abovementioned projects under the multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary frameworks with Spanish counterparts namely Yebes Observatory, Instituto Geográfico Nacional (IGN). NARIT signed a 6-year MoU with IGN in March 2017. NARIT is also a part of the Cherenkov Telescope Array Observatory (CTA) since 2015, located in La Palma, Spain.
1 February 2021
Chargé d'affaires of the People’s Republic of China Embassy in Thailand, Mr. Yang Xin paid a courtesy call on H.E Prof. Dr. Anek Laothamatas, Minister of Higher Education, Science, Research and Innovation of Thailand on 1 February 2021. The Minister was accompanied by Dr. Saran Poshyachinda – NARIT Executive Director, who updated the parties on the ongoing establishment of Asian Treaty Organization for Astronomy(ATOA). NARIT also works on space technology including bilateral satellite development project with the Changchun Institute of Optics, Fine Mechanics and Physics (CIOMP) Chinese Academy of Sciences, Thai Consortium for Atmospheric Research with Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences to enhance atmospheric research in Southeast Asia. NARIT maintains and fosters collaborations with numerous Chinese counterparts over the past decade.
1 February 2021
Ambassador of India, Suchitra Durai called on H.E Prof. Dr. Anek Laothamatas, Minister of Higher Education, Science, Research and Innovation of Thailand on 1 February 2021. NARIT Executive Director, Dr. Saran Poshyachindaand NARIT Advisor, Dr. Wiphu Rujopakarn were also present to discuss the ongoing establishment of Asian Treaty Organization for Astronomy(ATOA). NARIT has been working in close collaborations with various institutions across India namely Indian Institute of Astrophysics, Astronomical Society of India, and an extended MoU signed and staff exchanges with Aryabhatta Research Institute of Observational Sciences (ARIES).
December 8th, 2020
The virtual Agreement on Southeast Asian Regional Office of Astronomy for Development (SEA-ROAD) was signed for another 6 year of extension between the International Astronomical Union (IAU) - represented by Kevin Govender, OAD Director and Saran Poshyachinda, NARIT Executive Director.
16 November 2020
On November 16, 2020, Dr. Saran Poshyachinda – NARIT Executive Director welcomed a team of staff from the U.S. Embassy Bangkok and U.S. Consulate General Chiang Mai to Princess Sirindhorn AstroPark – NARIT Headquarters in Mae Rim to discuss the possible collaborations between the United States and NARIT on public engagement in astronomy and its related sciences. The U.S. delegation from Public and Cultural Section was given a brief introduction of the facilities, astronomical exhibition tour, and planetarium show. The prospect collaborations are aimed to focus on public events, speakers programs, film screenings, STEAM engagement, and Art & Astronomy exchanges. Stay tuned for more details!
16 November 2020
The 2020 Observing Season officially commenced on November 16, 2020 at Thai National Observatory (TNO), Doi Inthanon in Chiang Mai. NARIT had the pleasure to welcome team U.S. Consulate General Chiang Mai led by Mr. Sean K. O’Neill – the Consul General to our state-of-the-art facility located at the highest spot in Thailand. Beneath the elaborate constellations, Dr. Saran Poshyachinda – NARIT Executive Director guided the Consul through the 2.4-meter and 1-meter in-house optical telescopes. The parties aimed to strengthen ongoing programs and initiate prospects between Thai and US collaborations on STEM and Space education. NARIT owns and operates the 0.7-meter robotic telescope at Sierra Remote Observatories (SRO) in California since 2015. Together with University of North Carolina, NARIT also operates the 0.6-meter robotic telescope as a part of the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory (CTIO) located in Chile. Mr. Consul had a chance to observe these two telescopes from the control room as parts of the Thai Robotic Telescope Network (TRT) in which NARIT operates around the world.
4 November 2020
Dr. Saran Poshyachinda – NARIT Executive Director and Team NARIT paid a visit to the Embassy of Chile in Bangkok on November 4th, 2020 to discuss future collaborations with H.E. Christian Rehren – Ambassador of Chile to Thailand and Mr. Fernando Berguño – Counsellor/Deputy Head of Mission. The parties aim to explore possible channels to strengthen bilateral collaborations in astronomy, science, technology, and infrastructure development in the mere future. Chile is considered among astronomers as one of the world’s most extraordinary places for stargazing, with more than 300 observing days a year in the Atacama desert, where the skies are exceptionally clear and dry for professional observation. NARIT currently owns and operates a 0.6-metre robotic telescope as a part of the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory located in Chile.
12 October 2020
H.E. Georg Schmidt - Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany to the Kingdom of Thailand and Spouse - Mrs. Yuet Lin Fong visited Princess Sirindhorn AstroPark, NARIT Headquarters in Chiang Mai today (12 October 2020). Dr. Saran Poshyachinda - NARIT Executive Director and a team of NARIT executives and researchers welcomed the delegation to discuss the ongoing scientific collaborations between NARIT and its German counterparts. NARIT is currently constructing the 40-metre Radio Telescope at Huai Hong Khrai Royal Development Study Centre on the outskirts of Chiang Mai, under close cooperation with Max-Planck-Institut für Radioastronomie and MT Mechatronics GmbH. The delegation was given a tour of High Performance Computing and Data Intensive Astronomy Advanced Laboratory (HPC), Advanced Optical Laboratory, NARIT Planetarium and Exhibition zone, Mirror Coating Chamber and NARIT's homegrown ventilator machine during the COVID-19 pandemic. The parties also discussed the possibilities of further cooperation and strengthening present ties.
Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn graciously presided over the opening ceremony of Galaxy Forum Southeast Asia 2020 Thailand on March 3rd 2020 at Princess Sirindhorn AstroPark in Chiang Mai. Galaxy Forum was co-hosted by the National Astronomical Research Institute of Thailand (Public Organization) and the International Lunar Observatory Association (ILOA) based in Hawaii, USA.