Mini Episode: Big data, big IDIA

with Professor Russ Taylor

In this mini episode Jacinta has a quick chat with Professor Russ Taylor, one of the founders of IDIA ( The Inter-University Institute for Data Intensive Astronomy).

Russ has had a long and distinguished career as an astronomer, serving as the Director of IDIA from 2015 to 2023 as well as serving as the SKA Research Chair at the University of Cape Town and the University of Western Cape.Russ has also published over 200 scientific papers during his career. His work focuses on cosmic magnetism, radio continuum surveys and big data astronomy.

In this episode Russ discusses his career as the Director of IDIA, how he got the idea to start IDIA, what he plans to do during his retirement and about his excitement for the future of The SKA, MeerKAT and data intensive astronomy.

Join us for this mini and insightful episode of The Cosmic Savannah.

This week’s guest

Professor Russ Taylor with his beaded statue of one of the MeerKAT telescopes.
Clustering Properties of the cosmic web of 2MPZ galaxies produced by the IDIA/UCT Vislab. Source:
A cosmological simulation of the early Universe. Source:
Video showing the ilifu cloud computing system used by IDIA.


IDIA Website:
ilifu website:

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Podcast Manager / Show notes: Francois Campher

Social Media Manager: Sumari Hatting


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