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Breakthrough Listen is a 10-yr initiative to search for signatures of technologies created by extraterrestrial civilisations at radio and optical wavelengths. Here, we detail the digital data recording system deployed for Breakthrough Listen observations at the 64-m aperture CSIRO Parkes Telescope in New South Wales, Australia. The recording system currently implements two modes: a dual-polarisation, 1.125-GHz bandwidth mode for single-beam observations, and a 26-input, 308-MHz bandwidth mode for the 21-cm multibeam receiver. The system is also designed to support a 3-GHz single-beam mode for the forthcoming Parkes ultra-wideband feed. In this paper, we present details of the system architecture, provide an overview of hardware and software, and present initial performance results.
The north-west European population of Bewick’s Swan Cygnus columbianus bewickii declined by 38% between 1995 and 2010 and is listed as ‘Endangered’ on the European Red List of birds. Here, we combined information on food resources within the landscape with long-term data on swan numbers, habitat use, behaviour and two complementary measures of body condition, to examine whether changes in food type and availability have influenced the Bewick’s Swan’s use of their main wintering site in the UK, the Ouse Washes and surrounding fens. Maximum number of Bewick’s Swans rose from 620 in winter 1958/59 to a high of 7,491 in winter 2004/05, before falling to 1,073 birds in winter 2013/14. Between winters 1958/59 and 2014/15 the Ouse Washes supported between 0.5 and 37.9 % of the total population wintering in north-west Europe (mean ± 95 % CI = 18.1 ± 2.4 %). Swans fed on agricultural crops, shifting from post-harvest remains of root crops (e.g. sugar beet and potatoes) in November and December to winter-sown cereals (e.g. wheat) in January and February. Inter-annual variation in the area cultivated for these crops did not result in changes in the peak numbers of swans occurring on the Ouse Washes. Behavioural and body condition data indicated that food supplies on the Ouse Washes and surrounding fens remain adequate to allow the birds to gain and maintain good body condition throughout winter with no increase in foraging effort. Our findings suggest that the recent decline in numbers of Bewick’s Swans at this internationally important site was not linked to inadequate food resources.
We present low-frequency spectral energy distributions of 60 known radio pulsars observed with the Murchison Widefield Array telescope. We searched the GaLactic and Extragalactic All-sky Murchison Widefield Array survey images for 200-MHz continuum radio emission at the position of all pulsars in the Australia Telescope National Facility (ATNF) pulsar catalogue. For the 60 confirmed detections, we have measured flux densities in 20 × 8 MHz bands between 72 and 231 MHz. We compare our results to existing measurements and show that the Murchison Widefield Array flux densities are in good agreement.
One of the most notable currents in social, cultural and political historiography is the interrogation of the categories of 'elite' and 'popular' politics and their relationship to each other, as wellas the exploration of why and how different sorts of people engaged with politics and behaved politically. While such issues are timeless, they hold a special importance for a society experiencing rapid political and social change, like early modern England. No one has done more to define these agendas for early modern historians than John Walter. His work has been hugely influential, and at itsheart has been the analysis of the political agency of ordinary people. The essays in this volume engage with the central issues of Walter's work, ranging across the politics of poverty, dearth and household, popular political consciousness and practice more broadly, and religion and politics during the English revolution. This outstanding collection, bringing together some of the leading historians of this period with some of the field's rising stars, will appeal to anyone interested in the social, cultural and political history of early modern England or issues of popular political consciousness and behaviour more generally.
MICHAEL J. BRADDICK is professor of history at the University of Sheffield. PHIL WITHINGTON is professor of history at the University of Sheffield.
CONTRIBUTORS: Michael J. Braddick, J. C. Davis, Amanda Flather, Steve Hindle, Mark Knights, John Morrill, Alexandra Shepard, Paul Slack, Richard M. Smith, Clodagh Tait, Keith Thomas, Phil Withington, Andy Wood, Keith Wrightson.
In 1642, Anne Read's husband died of grief. In the same year, Sir Con Magennis died tormented by his evil deeds and ‘much … affrighted with the apprehension and conceipt that … Mr Tudge [a minister he had slain] was still in his presence’.Early modern people attributed huge consequence to ‘passions’ (they would not have used the word ‘emotion’) like grief, anger and fear. When uncontrolled, ‘passion’ started wars and ended life. Little wonder that contemporaries urged the restraint of potentially damaging feelings. However, there were times when emotions were particularly difficult to check.
John Walter's recent work on the collection of documents called the 1641 Depositions has assisted in building a new understanding of the outbreak of waves of violence in Ireland in 1641–2 and subsequently. The depositions contain testimonies from about 3,000 people, mostly British Protestant settlers, who had been dispossessed of their lands, homes and goods by Catholic rebels. Some had been confronted by crowds of local people, though as the rebellion continued, gentlemen tended to take over the leadership of these attacks. Either way, most of the deponents could identify at least some of those involved. The majority had been threatened with violence, and many bore tales of loss of property, personal injury and the torture and violent deaths of their family members, friends and neighbours. There were also accounts of incidents of desecration of sacred space and iconoclasm and of the deliberate humiliation of victims, who were routinely stripped and insulted. The depositions also contain a later set of ‘examinations’, usually conducted to probe particular crimes that had occurred in the early 1640s. The testimonies here included those of both settler and native witnesses and alleged perpetrators. It is no surprise, therefore, that Nicholas Canny should have described the depositions as ‘a body of material which is emotional’. Historians of the period often reflect on the emotional state of the Gaelic Irish and Old English participants, to paint a picture of simmering humiliation, shame, resentment, hostility, fear, hatred, anxiety and despair that led to outpourings of vengeful rage. Though economic and other grievances are pinpointed as arousing these emotions, they are regularly fathered above all on religion: Inga Jones argues that ‘religion has the capacity to arouse passions which go beyond what political and localist concerns can stimulate, a passion which … could and did spill over into unrestrained slaughter’.
LMC2 was one of the first supergiant shells in the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) to be identified, based on the detection of long, curved Hα filaments extending over 900 pc (Goudis & Meaburn 1978). LMC 2 is located to the east of the active star formation region south of 30 Doradus. LMC 2 is a spectacular supergiant shell in the LMC, having the most coherent filamentary structure and the highest X-ray surface brightness. As shown in Fig. 1, the diffuse X-ray emission from LMC 2 is bounded by the Hα filaments in the north and east. A bright X-ray arc is seen in the southwest quadrant, extending from N 158 and N 159.
Spectroscopic imaging and statistical analysis of NIR-to-visible upconversion luminescence (UCL) from β-NaYF4:Yb3+:Er3+ upconverting nanoparticles (UCNPs) supported on a series of random Ag nanowire aggregates reveals a density dependent UCL enhancement. Statistical analysis of the spectrally resolved upconversion images shows a non-linear dependence of upconversion luminescence enhancement with Ag nanowire surface coverage. A maximum average enhancement of 5.8× was observed for 58% surface coverage. Based on the empirically determined trend with density, it is estimated that up to 20× upconversion luminescence enhancement can be achieved at 100% surface coverage, even at high excitation intensity. This projection is commensurate with the 20× enhancement ratio observed for select locations within the imaged micro-ensemble. Time-resolved emission of the UC luminescence from UCNPs on the Ag nanowire aggregates confirms the surface plasmon effects on the UCNPs kinetics. Such Ag nanowire aggregates show potential as a scalable and relatively simple metal-enhanced upconversion substrate.
The Executive Committee Working Group on “Cosmic Light” was created in 2014 (at its EC94 Meeting, Apr.30-May 2, Canberra, Australia), in preparation of the contribution of the IAU to the UNESCO “2015 International Year of Light and Light Technologies” (IYL2015), which had been approved by the UN in December 2013 (see http://www.light2015.org/Home.html).
Gaia's Radial Velocity Spectrometer (RVS) has been operating in routine phase for over one year since initial commissioning. RVS continues to work well but the higher than expected levels of straylight reduce the limiting magnitude. The end-of-mission radial-velocity (RV) performance requirement for G2V stars was 15 km s−1 at V = 16.5 mag. Instead, 15 km s−1 precision is achieved at 15 < V < 16 mag, consistent with simulations that predict a loss of 1.4 mag. Simulations also suggest that changes to Gaia's onboard software could recover ~0.14 mag of this loss. Consequently Gaia's onboard software was upgraded in April 2015. The status of this new commissioning period is presented, as well as the latest scientific performance of the on-ground processing of RVS spectra. We illustrate the implications of the RVS limiting magnitude on Gaia's view of the Milky Way's halo in 6D using the Gaia Universe Model Snapshot (GUMS).