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Higher education and academic research, by definition, is a collaborative process.  With the latest in video technology and IT expertise, Cisco Australia made two announcements on how it is creating new ways of collaborating that will enhance learning and lead to exciting new research.   

Following the successful rollout of Cisco TelePresence Exchange to nearly 65 US universities and academic research institutions with National LambdaRail (NLR), Cisco Australia decided to similarly team up with Australia’s Academic and Research Network (AARNet) to enable virtual meetings between Australian universities and research institutions (see press release here).

To date, there are about half a dozen Australian universities that have or are in the process of rolling out Cisco TelePresence including Swinburne University, Monash University, Deakin University, Victoria University of Technology, Melbourne University and University of Queensland.  It’ll be university’s like Swinburne University that are looking forward to the Oct. 2011 introduction of AARNet’s TelePresence Exchange Service to connect researchers at Parkes Observatory (a 64-metre Telescope used for Radio Astronomy) and its Advanced Technology Centre with other Australian and regional universities.  Read more on the news here

Also announced this week is a partnership between Cisco and the Square Kilometre Array Program Development Office (SPDO), headquarters of the SKA project which is a revolutionary international radio telescope that will seek to answer fundamental questions in physics and astrophysics.

 Cisco will provide technology and strategic IT counsel to the SKA in the development of the world’s biggest (total range of the telescope is about one square kilometre) and most sensitive telescope!

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