Hugo Messias has arrived in Lisbon and PACE under the “Identifying the Earliest Supermassive Black Holes with ALMA” research grant. Welcome Back, Hugo!
PACE has been invited by the ‘Regiao Autonoma de Azores’ and the RAEGE consortium to visit the Colombo station in the Azores Island of Santa Maria. Equipped with 3 receivers in bands S (2.2 – 2.37 GHz), X (8.15 -9GHz), and Ka (21.77 – 24.45 GHz), this 13.2 m radio telescope is part of the International VLBI Service for Geodesy and Astrometry (IVS) network (RAEGSMAR). During this visit, resident RAEGE scientists described to PACE researchers the capability and the performance of the telescope, in order to explore the possibility of future synergies with such a valuable instrument.
A Picture taken by the PACE representative, José Afonso, during the visit.
PACE members participated in the international Athena-WFI meeting (see link for the detailed programme), held on the end of November at the Faculty of Sciences of the University of Lisbon. The Wide Field Imager (WFI) is an instrument that will be mounted on the Athena Space Observatory, an X-ray telescope designed to address fundamental questions in Astrophysics involving high energies. The launch is scheduled for 2031, and PACE explored during the meeting potential synergies between Athena and millimetre and submillimetre Astronomy.
On 2-4th of July, PACE participated to the ‘ Encontro Ciencia 2018‘, the annual meeting of Portuguese researchers. PACE had its own stand introducing ALMA to the visitors. The photos show the stand and the analyst Israel Matute confronted to curious researchers and students.
The PACE, in collaboration with the ESO, organized an “ALMA Data
Processing Workshop” held in Lisbon on 5th, 6th, and 7th of December and funded by RadioNet consortium (website:
http://www.iastro.pt/research/conferences/alma2017/). The goal of the workshop was to bring together all the community which were planning to use ALMA data in the future, and join them together for different hands-on sessions. The organizers, together with expert invited speakers from the ARC nodes of UK and Netherlands, guided the participants from raw to reduced
data, in two days and half of full work.
A total of 19 astronomers attended the workshop, coming from ten different countries: Pakistan, Greece, Turkey, Croatia, Netherlands, Ireland, Italy, UK, Spain, and of course Portugal. As expected, the most represented communities were Portugal and Spain, for logistics reasons. 37% of the participants were female, and more than half of the participants were PhD or Master students. Beyond the participants, the organizers invited two expert speakers from the ARC node of the UK, Dr. George Bendo, and from Netherlands, Dr. Ciriaco Goddi, which work as ALMA data analysts in their respective ALMA nodes.
An important aspect to underline is that almost 63% of the participants were not experts in interferometry, and approached the topic for the first time. This is very positive, as the main goals of the workshop was exactly to attract young scientists towards the use of interferometric data.
We hope that in the future PACE will continue this path, organizing other events, with the idea to help the European radio community.
[RadioNet has received funding from the EU’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the grant agreement No 730562]
PACE in collaboration with the ESO and the RadioNet consortium, is glad to announce that an “ALMA Data Processing Workshop” will take place in Lisbon on 5th (afternoon), 6th, and 7th of December.
The huge increase of the data available on the archive has improved enormously the possibility for the scientific community to exploit the potential of this fantastic instrument. However, there are still many issues related to the non friendly nature of interferometric data, which need different processes to be transformed in scientifically useful data.
The goal of this workshop is to bring together all the community which is planning to use ALMA data and put them together on an hands on session. We will guide the audience from the raw data towards scientifically exploitable data in 2 and half days of intense work. Furthermore, if someone has already in mind which data to use, the workshop will provide the perfect environment where to start your work.
The program together with logistic details will be soon available through the website.
We also inform the participants that fellowships are available for a small number of students, covering the travel and the accommodation.
Ciro Pappalardo, Jose Afonso, Sandra Homem, Eva Lopes
Ciro Pappalardo, George Bendo, Ciriaco Goddi, Dirk Petry
This event has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 730562 [RadioNet]
A strong effort has been necessary to protect the antennas from the heat, but in the end they succeeded: ALMA started the observations of the Sun.
The lesson has been learned in the hard way: the Swedish–ESO Submillimetre Telescope (SEST) had a fire in its secondary mirror assembly after the telescope was accidentally pointed at the Sun.
However, this time things went very well, and this week have been released by the ESO a series of images that show the power of this new ALMA capability.
Scientists focused their attention into a well known sunspot, which was observed at 1.25 and 3 millimetres.
These observations probed different layer of the chromosphere, and opened a new frontier in the study of our precious star. For further details you can read the official press release of the ESO where other interesting images are available.
The annual European meeting of the ARC nodes and CoE this year will be held in the Costa de Caparica Hotel.
More than 50 scientists from the different ALMA nodes in Europe will attend this meeting to discuss the strategic lines for the future of ALMA, and the technical improvements of the official data reduction pipeline of the instrument.
The Portuguese Alma Center of Expertise (PACE) will guest the event in collaboration with the ESO-ALMA Headquarter of Garching.
The moment we have all waited for, the general public can now visit ALMA. From 29th March on, every Saturday and Sunday mornings, organised visits to the ALMA Operations Support Facility will take place. The visitor just needs to register in advance by completing and submitting the form available in the visits webpage.
On 25th of August, the article “Herschel-ATLAS and ALMA HATLAS J142935.3-002836, a lensed major merger at redshift 1.027” was published on Astronomy & Astrophysics journal. The research, lead by PACE member Hugo Messias, deals with the nature of a merger of galaxies at z=1.027 as seen by ALMA and other major observational facilities.
A coordinated world-wide press-release was issued by the media departments of institutes involved in this work (including ESO), resulting in a substantial media coverage (see, for example, the articles by El Mundo, CBS news, Forbes, … a compilation of media coverage is presented here).