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We present the data and initial results from the first pilot survey of the Evolutionary Map of the Universe (EMU), observed at 944 MHz with the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder (ASKAP) telescope. The survey covers
of an area covered by the Dark Energy Survey, reaching a depth of 25–30
rms at a spatial resolution of
11–18 arcsec, resulting in a catalogue of
220 000 sources, of which
180 000 are single-component sources. Here we present the catalogue of single-component sources, together with (where available) optical and infrared cross-identifications, classifications, and redshifts. This survey explores a new region of parameter space compared to previous surveys. Specifically, the EMU Pilot Survey has a high density of sources, and also a high sensitivity to low surface brightness emission. These properties result in the detection of types of sources that were rarely seen in or absent from previous surveys. We present some of these new results here.
The Rapid ASKAP Continuum Survey (RACS) is the first large-area survey to be conducted with the full 36-antenna Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder (ASKAP) telescope. RACS will provide a shallow model of the ASKAP sky that will aid the calibration of future deep ASKAP surveys. RACS will cover the whole sky visible from the ASKAP site in Western Australia and will cover the full ASKAP band of 700–1800 MHz. The RACS images are generally deeper than the existing NRAO VLA Sky Survey and Sydney University Molonglo Sky Survey radio surveys and have better spatial resolution. All RACS survey products will be public, including radio images (with
15 arcsec resolution) and catalogues of about three million source components with spectral index and polarisation information. In this paper, we present a description of the RACS survey and the first data release of 903 images covering the sky south of declination
made over a 288-MHz band centred at 887.5 MHz.
We present an overview of the survey for radio emission from active stars that has been in progress for the last six years using the observatories at Fleurs, Molonglo, Parkes and Tidbinbilla. The role of complementary optical observations at the Anglo-Australian Observatory, Mount Burnett, Mount Stromlo and Siding Spring Observatories and Mount Tamborine are also outlined. We describe the different types of star that have been included in our survey and discuss some of the problems in making the radio observations.
During routine monitoring of active-chromosphere stars in August 1987 an intense radio flare on the FK Comae star HD 32918 was detected by the Parkes radiotelescope. Other observatories were notified, enabling data to be collected at 843 MHz, 1.4 GHz, 8.4 GHz and optical frequencies.
The flare at radio frequencies was largely similar to a previous event on this star, reaching a peak radio power of 5 < 1012 W Hz−1 at 8.4 GHz. During the flare the spectrum varied as ∼ v1.4 and later flattened as the flare progressed. Compared to the previous flare, circular polarization was higher.
Ca II and Hα optical spectra taken at the AAO 3.9-metre telescope show the star to have a highly active chromosphere and a strong wind, with a terminal velocity of ≈230 km s−1. While much of this activity appears to be long lived, there is good evidence for an increase in the strength of the chromospheric lines during the radio flare event.
Operation of the six 13.7 m antennas of the Fleurs synthesis telescope as a sub-array has provided a new and surprisingly versatile astronomical tool. With enhanced reliability and fully automated operation, unattended observing over several days is possible. Interleaved ‘multiple-snapshot’ observations of many fields per day can be made.
The array has shown itself to be particularly suitable for the measurement of precision (a few arcsecond) positions for the optical identification of a large number of radio sources, a survey of compact sources and the monitoring of the activity of several radio stars over periods of weeks. At present a program of recalibration is under way to improve the positional accuracy and dynamic range of the instrument.
Properties of the microwave emission from HR1099 are examined in an attempt to determine whether the emission arises as gyro-synchrotron radiation from mildly relativistic electrons trapped in magnetic fields above starspots on the active K subgiant component. It is shown that radio curves do not exhibit a systematic variation in phase with the rotation rate, as one might expect for emission from a source situated above a long-lived starspot. However, there is some evidence that the radio flaring occurs at two preferred longitude zones. Whether these zones agree with starspot locations remains to be determined by light curve modelling. What we can say with confidence is that the measured spectral index of the microwave emission does not fit a simple gyro-synchrotron source model, such as that proposed to explain the observed reversal with frequency of the sense of circular polarization.
A program to determine accurate radio positions and optical identifications of southern flat-spectrum radio sources has been undertaken with the six-dish array of the Fleurs synthesis telescope at 1.4 GHz and using the SERC J sky survey. This sample covers the declination range −80° to −50° and comprises all 198 sources from the Parkes catalogue with α of > −0.5 and flux density of 0.25 Jy.
The radio astrometric phase of the program is complete. We conclude that by comparison with accurate VLBI positions the FST positions have r.m.s. uncertainties of ∼0″.9. There is no global bias in the FST positions at the 0″.2 to 0″.3 level relative to the JPL VLBI extragalactic reference frame. A comparison with positions from the Parkes catalogue shows that in the southern regions the Parkes catalogue has rms position errors of about 9″. There is no significant bias between the FST and Parkes positions.
Significant new opportunities for astrophysics and cosmology have been identified at low radio frequencies. The Murchison Widefield Array is the first telescope in the southern hemisphere designed specifically to explore the low-frequency astronomical sky between 80 and 300 MHz with arcminute angular resolution and high survey efficiency. The telescope will enable new advances along four key science themes, including searching for redshifted 21-cm emission from the EoR in the early Universe; Galactic and extragalactic all-sky southern hemisphere surveys; time-domain astrophysics; and solar, heliospheric, and ionospheric science and space weather. The Murchison Widefield Array is located in Western Australia at the site of the planned Square Kilometre Array (SKA) low-band telescope and is the only low-frequency SKA precursor facility. In this paper, we review the performance properties of the Murchison Widefield Array and describe its primary scientific objectives.
Digital signal processing is one of many valuable tools for suppressing unwanted signals or inter-ference. Building hardware processing engines seems to be the way to best implement some classes of interference suppression but is, unfortunately, expensive and time-consuming, especially if several miti-gation techniques need to be compared. Simulations can be useful, but are not a substitute for real data. CSIRO’s Australia Telescope National Facility has recently commenced a ‘software radio telescope’ project designed to fill the gap between dedicated hardware processors and pure simulation. In this approach, real telescope data are recorded coherently, then processed offline. This paper summarises the current contents of a freely available database of base band recorded data that can be used to experiment with signal processing solutions. It includes data from the following systems: single dish, multi-feed receiver; single dish with reference antenna; and an array of six 22 m antennas with and without a reference antenna. Astronomical sources such as OH masers, pulsars and continuum sources subject to interfering signals were recorded. The interfering signals include signals from the US Global Positioning System (GPS) and its Russian equivalent (GLONASS), television, microwave links, a low-Earth-orbit satellite, various other transmitters, and signals leaking from local telescope systems with fast clocks. The data are available on compact disk, allowing use in general purpose computers or as input to laboratory hardware prototypes.
The E. & F. White Conference held in Sydney in December 1999 brought together expertise on a range of interference mitigation techniques from CSIRO, Australian and international industry and universities. Key goals were to enhance the understanding of techniques and their inter-relationship, to increase awareness of advanced technologies such as software radios and photonics, and to foster a cooperative approach to the development of interference mitigation techniques. The foremost application in mind was the square kilometre array (SKA) and the need to find ways to develop a hierarchical scheme for removing unwanted signals from astronomical data. This paper gives an overview of the topics discussed at the conference and summarises some of the key ideas and results that were presented.
A recent survey of EA eclipsing binaries by the Parkes 64-m telescope operating at 8.4 GHz detected 15 out of 47 systems on at least one out of the 10 nights surveyed. The detected systems were HD 6882 (ξ Phe), HD 36486 (δ Ori A), HD 39780 (TZ Men), HD 57167 (R CMa), HD 58713 (RY Gem), HD 74307 (S Cnc), HD 132742 (δ Lib), HD 147683 (V769 Sco), HD 161741 (V393 Sco), HD 163708 (V1647 Sgr), HD 16871Q(XZ Sgr), HD 183794 (V822 Aql), HD 187949 (V505 Sgr), HD 199005 (KZ Pav), and HD 207098 (δ Cap).
A full account of the observations and interpretation has been submitted to The Astrophysical Journal.
About one-half of the 15 detections refer to main-sequence pairs of spectral types earlier than F and the remainder are classical Algols.
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