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We report the results of Long Baseline Array observations made in 2001 of ten southern sources proposed by Mattox et al. as counterparts to EGRET >100 MeV gamma-ray sources. Source structures are compared with published data where available and possible superluminal motions identified in several cases. The associations are examined in the light of Fermi observations, indicating that the confirmed counterparts tend to have radio properties consistent with other identifications, including flat radio spectral index, high brightness temperature, greater radio variability, and higher core dominance.
We present results from a multiwavelength study of the blazar PKS 1954–388 at radio, UV, X-ray, and gamma-ray energies. A RadioAstron observation at 1.66 GHz in June 2012 resulted in the detection of interferometric fringes on baselines of 6.2 Earth-diameters. This suggests a source frame brightness temperature of greater than 2 × 1012 K, well in excess of both equipartition and inverse Compton limits and implying the existence of Doppler boosting in the core. An 8.4-GHz TANAMI VLBI image, made less than a month after the RadioAstron observations, is consistent with a previously reported superluminal motion for a jet component. Flux density monitoring with the Australia Telescope Compact Array confirms previous evidence for long-term variability that increases with observing frequency. A search for more rapid variability revealed no evidence for significant day-scale flux density variation. The ATCA light-curve reveals a strong radio flare beginning in late 2013, which peaks higher, and earlier, at higher frequencies. Comparison with the Fermi gamma-ray light-curve indicates this followed ~ 9 months after the start of a prolonged gamma-ray high-state—a radio lag comparable to that seen in other blazars. The multiwavelength data are combined to derive a Spectral Energy Distribution, which is fitted by a one-zone synchrotron-self-Compton (SSC) model with the addition of external Compton (EC) emission.
With increasing urbanization and environmental degradation, urban landscapes are increasingly expected to provide a wide range of ecosystem services typically associated with rural areas, including biodiversity conservation and food production. Because residential landscapes constitute the largest single urban land use, domestic gardens have emerged as a topic of research interest and planning concern. The ecosystem services (or disservices) these landscapes provide, however, have not been rigorously measured, nor have tradeoffs between the services they provide been assessed. In this study, semi-structured interviews were conducted with 59 African American, Chinese-origin or Mexican-origin households with on-lot or vacant lot food gardens in Chicago. Crop plants and cultivated ornamental plants on the lot were inventoried and mapped at the species level. A total of 123 edible plant taxa from 25 families and 288 ornamental plant species from 85 families were identified, for a combined total of 387 species from 90 families. Cumulatively, the gardens of African American households were relatively rich in ornamental plant species and families, while those of Chinese-origin households had a depauperate flora. Crop plant richness was more even across sample types. Shade trees and a developed shrub layer were absent from most gardens, possibly representing a tradeoff in ecosystem services in favor of food production. The richness of the aggregate 2.1 ha of residential property inventoried in this study was comparable with or exceeded that of a 34 ha prairie remnant west of Chicago. However, only 35 (9.6%) of the inventoried species were native to the Chicago area.
We have completed a Chandra snapshot survey of 54 radio jets that are extended on arcsec scales. These are associated with flat spectrum radio quasars spanning a redshift range z=0.3 to 2.1. X-ray emission is detected from the jet of approximately 60% of the sample objects. We assume minimum energy and apply conditions consistent with the original Felten-Morrison calculations in order to estimate the Lorentz factors and the apparent Doppler factors. This allows estimates of the enthalpy fluxes, which turn out to be comparable to the radiative luminosities.
The Micro-arcsecond Scintillation-Induced Variability (MASIV) Survey and its follow-up observations have provided large datasets of AGN intra-day variability (IDV) at radio wavelengths. These data have shown that IDV arises mainly from scintillation caused by scattering in the ionized interstellar medium (ISM) of our Galaxy, based on correlation with Galactic latitudes and line-of-sight Galactic electron column densities. The sensitivity of interstellar scintillation (ISS) towards source angular sizes has provided a new tool for studying the most compact components of radio-loud AGNs at microarcsecond (μas) scale resolution - much higher than any ground-based radio interferometer. We present here key results from the MASIV Survey and its follow-up observations, and point to relevant papers where these results have been published.
We are undertaking an observational program using the ATCA to monitor the intraday variability (IDV) of a sample of sources at 4.8 and 8.6 GHz. The sources were selected to include the known strong southern IDV sources plus a number of sources whose IDV was recently discovered. The present monitoring program will extend over a full year in order to search for any annual cycle that may be present in the long-term IDV characteristics of these sources. In this paper we discuss the observing strategy and data analysis, and present the first results from our observations.
We have commenced a program to monitor the gravitational lens B1152+199 with the Australia Telescope Compact Array (ATCA) to search for variability of the lensed components with the goal of measuring the lensing time delay. As part of this program we made a 9 hour full-synthesis observation in June 2000 to derive a ‘template’ for model-fitting the shorter, multi-epoch, monitoring observations. We report here on the results of this full-synthesis observation and on three additional epochs of monitoring for time variation.
Flux density monitoring data at 2.3 and 8.4 GHz is presented for a sample of 33 southern hemisphere GPS sources, drawn from the 2.7 GHz Parkes survey. This monitoring data, together with VLBI monitoring data, shows that a small fraction of these sources, ∼10%, vary. Their variability falls into several categories: sources whose spectral classification is, at best, ephemeral on a timescale of years; sources with a stable GPS classification that vary, but retain their classification; and a small number of sources that exhibit interstellar scintillation, but that maintain a mean GPS spectrum. Existing data on GPS sources with higher frequency peaks, ≥3 GHz, reveals that many such sources vary. However, the majority of these sources possess a GPS spectrum only during outbursts, and hence should perhaps be classified as ephemeral GPS sources. In addition, significant levels of circular polarisation have been found in a number of GPS sources, both amongst the variables and non-variables. Remarkable amongst these is PKS 1519–273, which possesses strong and variable circular polarisation, and which exhibits IDV in all Stokes parameters.
The future of centimetre and metre-wave astronomy lies with the Square Kilometre Array (SKA), a telescope under development by a consortium of 17 countries that will be 50 times more sensitive than any existing radio facility. Most of the key science for the SKA will be addressed through large-area imaging of the Universe at frequencies from a few hundred MHz to a few GHz. The Australian SKA Pathfinder (ASKAP) is a technology demonstrator aimed in the mid-frequency range, and achieves instantaneous wide-area imaging through the development and deployment of phased-array feed systems on parabolic reflectors. The large field-of-view makes ASKAP an unprecedented synoptic telescope that will make substantial advances in SKA key science. ASKAP will be located at the Murchison Radio Observatory in inland Western Australia, one of the most radio-quiet locations on the Earth and one of two sites selected by the international community as a potential location for the SKA. In this paper, we outline an ambitious science program for ASKAP, examining key science such as understanding the evolution, formation and population of galaxies including our own, understanding the magnetic Universe, revealing the transient radio sky and searching for gravitational waves.
The discovery that interstellar scintillation (ISS) is suppressed for compact radio sources at z ≳ 2 has enabled ISS surveys to be used as cosmological probes. We discuss briefly the potential and challenges involved in such an undertaking, based on a dual-frequency survey of ISS carried out to determine the origin of this redshift dependence.
New radiocarbon results on olive stones from el-Khawarij date olive cultivation at this site, in the Jordanian highlands, to the last 2 centuries of the 5th millennium cal BC. This period also sees the emergence of olive cultivation at Teleilat Ghassul, by the Dead Sea. The 10 new AMS dates were deliberately obtained from carbonized olive stones in order to date the exploitation of olives at el-Khawarij, a late prehistoric settlement believed to have been reliant on olive production. The results reveal a much longer span of occupation than hitherto suspected, including 2 dates that may fall later than 3900 cal BC (particularly OZI221, 3950–3530 cal BC). These later dates are in line with dates from other upland sites in the region, and may strengthen suggestions that Chalcolithic settlement persisted for longer in better watered upland areas (Lovell 2002). Further, an early date from a sample in a rock-cut installation in Area A suggests a much earlier date for occupation at the site, implying that upland olive exploitation may have commenced before 4700–4450 cal BC.
We have identified a new class of object that we term PRONGS (powerful radio objects nested in galaxies with star formation). These are powerful radio sources whose optical properties are that of spiral/star-forming galaxies, unlike classic powerful radio sources which are typically hosted by elliptical galaxies in the local Universe. Here we present a first look at these enigmatic sources.
We report the synthesis of nanostructured stage-2 potassium graphite, KC24, by intercalation of turbostratic graphite nanofibers produced from an electrospun polymer, and compare its properties with exfoliated graphite-based KC24. The nanostructured KC24 sample has low crystalline order and slightly increased interlayer spacing of 8.76 Å, compared with 8.65 Å in the bulk sample, indicating minimal registration of the graphite planes. Time-resolved time-of-flight neutron diffraction on both nanostructured and bulk KC24 under ammoniation is suggestive of a more homogeneous and faster pressure-modulated phase transition to the ternary ammoniated potassium-graphite in the nanostructured material. Following ammoniation, negligible hydrogen uptake is observed at 50 K.
Dietary intake has been shown to influence acid–base balance in human subjects under tightly controlled conditions. However, the net effect of food groups on alkali/acid loading in population groups is unclear. The aims of the present study were to: (1) quantify estimates of daily net endogenous acid production (NEAP) (mEq/d) in a representative group of British elderly aged 65 years and older; (2) compare and characterise NEAP by specific nutrients and food groups likely to influence dietary acid loading; (3) determine whether geographical location influenced NEAP. The National Diet and Nutrition Survey dataset, consisting of a 4 d weighed record and anthropometric data, was used to estimate dietary acidity. Dietary under-reporters were excluded by analysing only subjects with energy intakes ≥ 1·2 × BMR. NEAP was estimated as the dietary potential renal acid load+organic acid excretion, the latter as a multiple of estimated body surface area. NEAP was lower in women compared with men (P < 0·001), and lower than values reported in a Swedish elderly cohort. Lower dietary acidity was significantly associated with higher consumption of fruit and potatoes and lower consumption of meat, bread and eggs (P < 0·02 to P < 0·001). Lower intakes of fish and cheese were associated with lower NEAP in men only (P < 0·01 to P < 0·001). There were regional differences for NEAP, with higher intakes in Scotland/Northern regions compared with Central/South-Western and London/South-Eastern regions (P = 0·01). These data provide an insight into the acid-generating potential of the diet in the British elderly population, which may have important consequences in this vulnerable group.
In February 1997 the Japanese radio astronomy satellite HALCA was launched to provide the space-borne element for the VSOP mission. HALCA provided linear baselines three-times greater than that of ground arrays, thus providing higher resolution and higher AGN brightness temperature measurements and limits. Twenty-five percent of the scientific time of the mission was devoted to the “VSOP survey” of bright, compact, extra-galactic radio sources at 5 GHz. A complete list of 294 survey targets were selected from pre-launch surveys, 91% of which were observed during the satellite's lifetime.
The major goals of the VSOP Survey are statistical in nature: to determine the brightness temperature and approximate structure, to provide a source list for use with future space VLBI missions, and to compare radio properties with other data throughout the electro-magnetic spectrum. All the data collected have now been analysed and is being prepared for the final image Survey paper. In this paper we present details of the mission, and some statistics of the images and brightness temperatures.
PKS 1257—326 is one of three quasars known to show unusually large and rapid, intra-hour intensity variations, as a result of scintillation in the turbulent Galactic interstellar medium. We have measured time delays in the variability pattern arrival times at the VLA and the ATCA, as well as an annual cycle in the time-scale of variability for this source. Results of the two-station time delay observations are presented here. Implications for the scintillation of this source are discussed in the light of these results, together with results from two years of monitoring with the ATCA.
Controlling thin-film stress magnitudes and nonuniformities is a persistent and pervasive challenge for applications ranging from the semiconductor industry to nanotechnology. Consequently, the ability to accurately measure the intensity and spatial distribution of film stress is essential for fabrication process optimization. This paper describes novel extensions of the membrane resonance method to characterize in-plane film stress gradients. Arrays of freestanding membrane windows are fabricated by first depositing thin films over a silicon substrate. Back-etching then creates an array of membrane windows which are sequentially resonated with a compatible drive electrode. The technique was used to determine stress uniformity across electron projection lithography masks, which incorporate membrane window arrays. In addition, a procedure is presented for identifying the two principal stresses in individual membranes.
Nanocomposites and nanostructured polymers with unique opto-mechanical properties have been developed as smart coatings for use in a novel, high resolution, and non-contact strain-measuring application. Remote polarized Raman spectroscopy has been used to monitor optical strain sensitivity of deformed coatings (deformation micromechanics), and determine local strains on the micron scale directly from stress/strain induced Raman band shifts.
The research is aimed at providing a novel high-resolution non-contact technique for the determination of surface stresses and strains in a wide variety of engineering components used in both laboratory and in-the-field (external) applications.
The accumulation of evidence now strongly favours interstellar scintillation (ISS) as the principal mechanism causing intra-day variability (IDV) at cm wavelengths. While ISS reduces the implied brightness temperatures, they remain uncomfortably high. The distance to the scattering screen is an important parameter in determining the actual brightness temperature encountered. The high brightness temperatures, the presence of strong and variable circular polarization and the observed lifetimes of a decade or more for several IDV sources, pose significant problems for synchrotron theory.
“The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves, that we are underlings.” William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar
Lattice mismatch strain between films and substrates causes stresses in each and degrades the film quality. Compliant substrates can decrease the stresses and dislocation density in the film. A particular type of compliant substrate, which consists of a thin template, a handle wafer and a glass interlayer, is discussed here. Three-dimensional axisymmetric finite element models were developed to simulate the film-substrate structure and analyze stress generation and relaxation. The materials of film and template were considered as elastic but the glass interlayer was viscoelastic at the film growth temperature. Factors affecting stress generation and relaxation are reported.