Monday, March 18, 2013

Goodbye and Thankyou to Derek

LOFAR-UK would like to say a public thank you and goodbye to Derek McKay-Bukowski, who will cease his duties as the LOFAR Station Manager for UK608 (Chilbolton) at the end of March. Derek has been an integral part of LOFAR-UK through construction to ongoing operations, including the weeks on end without breaks when he slept in a small room at Chilbolton! We are all convinced that the LOFAR-UK station would not be the success it is without his dedication and attention to detail. 

Derek checking one of the LBA antennas during installation at Chilbolton in June 2010. Image credit: Chris Ison/PA Wire
Derek's flat-pack-station presentation at INTECH for the LOFAR-UK opening (which you can watch here) will long be remembered, as will his entertaining health and safety briefings. 

Derek (left) assisting Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell at the official opening of UK608 in September 2010. 
We must also mention Derek's contributions to LOFAR-UK in the early part of 2012. Derek went well beyond the call of duty when storms caused damage to some of the tiles and LBAs and his rapid intervention prevented this freak event from turning into a much more costly repair. 

Derek (centre in white hat) directing volunteers helping with repairs to an HBA tile in Febuary 2012. Image credit: STFC.

It is with real sadness that we must say goodbye to Derek from the LOFAR-UK, and we him all the best in his future work with the KAIRA project in Finland. 

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