Curtin University's Desert Fireball Network is part of the Global Fireball Observatory collaboration. It is supported by the Space Science and Technology Centre and the Curtin Institute for Radio Astronomy.

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About Us

The Desert Fireball Network is an inter-disciplinary research group looking to uncover the mysteries surrounding the formation of the solar system through the study of meteorites, fireballs and their pre-Earth orbits.

First established in 2005 as a trial of three remote operated film cameras to observe meteors falling towards Earth’s surface, the DFN at Curtin University is now a national distributed network of over 50 disruption-tolerant and fully autonomous digital observatories that continually monitor 3 million square km of the night sky – a third of Australian skies, all night, every night. Using intelligent imaging systems, automated data reduction pipeline, real time server-side triangulation and supercomputer data management system, the DFN captures the paths of fireballs in the sky, triangulating trajectories from multiple viewpoints, linking the rock’s pre-Earth orbit to its landing site for recovery.

Together with partners across the world, the DFN is expanding to become a Global Fireball Observatory with stations internationally to observe these phenomena. Recovering meteorites with known orbits helps to address some of the biggest questions in planetary science: how our planetary system came into being, and how dust and gas produced a planet capable of supporting life – our Earth.

Seen a fireball?

Report it on our Fireballs In The Sky app (Android or iOS ), or use the IMO web interface.

Research

Instrumentation

Meet the team who designs autonomous intelligent observatories, able to work in the Canadian polar winter as well as survive the Australian desert

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Data Management

How we deal with 4TB of new data every day

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Meteoroid modeling

How big is that space rock?

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Meteorite Searching

Let’s find space rocks!

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Science

science is fun

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Data Reduction Pipeline

From taking pictures to triangulated orbits.

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FireOPAL

Adapting DFN technology to Space Situational Awareness

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People

Researchers

Ellie Sansom
Director
Curtin U.
Hadrien Devillepoix
Science Lead
Curtin U.
Martin Towner
DFN Operations
Curtin U.
Rachel Kirby
Meteorite geochemistry
Monash & Curtin U.
Andy Tomkins
Meteorite geochemistry
Monash U.
Phil Bland
Curtin U.
Lucy Forman
Meteorite geochemistry
Curtin U.
Gretchen Benedix
Meteorite geochemistry
Curtin U.
Jonti Horner
Astronomer
U. Southern Queensland
Brad Tucker
Astronomer
Australian National University

PhD Students

Sophie Deam
Sophie Deam
Astronomer
Curtin U.
Dale Giancono
Embedded Systems Engineer
Curtin U.
Iona Clemente
Iona Clemente
Geophysicist
Curtin U.
Kosta Servis
Kosta Servis
Data Scientist
Pawsey supercomputing centre
Ashley Rogers
Ashley Rogers
Meteorite geochemist
Curtin U.

Support staff

Martin Cupák
Software Engineer
Curtin U.
Mia Walker
Centre Manager
Curtin U.

Former Team Members

Seamus Anderson
Seamus Anderson
NASA Goddard
Trent Jansen-Sturgeon
Trent Jansen-Sturgeon
Lockheed Martin Australia STELaRLab
Patrick Shober
IMCCE, Paris Observatory
Luke Daly
University of Glasgow
Robert Howie
Binar space programme
Ben Hartig
Research Office at Curtin, Defence team
Daniel Busan
Binar space programme
Team affiliation details

Links

News

We blog on the GFO website.

Hayabusa-2 campaign

Looking for our team's involvement with the HAYABUSA-2 re-entry?

Technical

Our technical public wiki is located here.

Public strewn fields

Interested in looking for some meteorites? Check out out public meteorite falls predictions page