Oct 05, 2017

Eric Murphy

""Frontiers of Radio Astronomy in the 2020s: The Next-Generation VLA""

Inspired by dramatic discoveries from the Jansky VLA and ALMA, a plan to pursue a large collecting area radio interferometer that will open new discovery space from proto-planetary disks to distant galaxies is being developed by NRAO and the science community.  Building on the superb cm observing conditions and existing infrastructure of the VLA site, the current vision of the ngVLA will be an interferometric array with more than 10 times the effective collecting area and spatial resolution of the current VLA and ALMA, that will operating at frequencies spanning ~1.2. – 116 GHz.  The ngVLA will be optimized for observations at wavelengths between the exquisite performance of ALMA at submm wavelengths, and the future SKA-1 at decimeter to meter wavelengths, thus lending itself to be highly complementary with these facilities.  As such, the ngVLA will open a new window on the universe through ultra-sensitive imaging of thermal line and continuum emission down to milliarcecond resolution, as well as deliver unprecedented broad band continuum polarimetric imaging of non-thermal processes.  The ngVLA will be the only facility in the world that can tackle a broad range of outstanding scientific questions in modern astronomy by simultaneously delivering the capability to: unveil the formation of Solar System analogues; probe the initial conditions for planetary systems and life with astrochemistry; characterize the assembly, structure, and evolution of galaxies from the first billion years to the present; use pulsars in the Galactic center as fundamental tests of gravity; and understand the formation and evolution of stellar and supermassive blackholes in the era of multi-messenger astronomy.

A recently formed Project Office is working closely with the U.S. and international research community to design the array, and plan its construction beginning mid next decade. Recent significant NSF support has allowed commencement of a formal design & development program enabling detailed science case development and technology prototyping/risk reduction before the next U.S astronomy Decadal Survey.  In this talk the current status of ngVLA, including science drivers, and the process of community studies driving design specifications will be described.


Event Details

Oct 05, 2017


4421 Sterling Hall

Coffee served at 3:30pm; talk starts at 3:45pm

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