Special Session 2

Astronomy in Antarctica

and

Future Visions for Antarctic Astronomy

UNSW

18th July 2003

IAU XXV GA | General Info | Conference Program | Poster Papers | Submitting Contributions | Future Visions for Antarctic Astronomy Meeting


Poster Paper - Abstracts


IAU00287 ANTARCTICA BALLOON FLIGHT FOR HIGH- ENERGY ELECTRONS
Torii Shoji
Institute of Physics, Kanagawa University

We have been developing a detector for observing high-energy electrons by the Polar Patrol Balloon (PPB) in Antarctica. The detector is an imaging calorimeter composed of scintillating-fiber belts and plastic scintillators sandwiched by lead plates. The effective area of detector is 28 x 28 cm**2 and the total thickness of the lead absorber is 9 r.l. The goal of observation is to determine the definite electron energy spectrum ranging from 100 GeV to 1 TeV, which gives us knowledges about the origin of electrons and the propagation characteristics in the Galaxy. The performance of detector has been proved by the test flight and the accelerator beam test. The flight will be carried out in December, 2003 at the Syowa Station of National Institute of Polar Research in Japan. The flight is scheduled for 30 days.
Tamura Tadahisa , Yoshida Kenji , Nishimura Jun , Yamagami Takamasa , Saito Yoshitaka , Yamagishi Hisao , Kadokura Akira , Kasahara Katsuaki , Kitamura Akira

 

IAU00356 STAR FORMATION AT DOMEC
Persi Paolo
Istituto Astrofisica Spaziale e Fisica Cosmica, CNR

One of the most interesting scientific objective of IRAIT (Italian robotic antarctic italian telescope) at Dome C is to study the physical processes of star formation in our Galaxy. IRAIT equipped with a mid-IR camera with a 256x256 Si:As BIB array can obtained very deep and wide field images (FOV=12.8'X12.8')
specially in the 20 micron spectral region. Following theses characteristics, I'll investigate different projects concerning low and high mass star formation that can be developed at Dome C.

 

IAU01154 HIGH ANGULAR RESOLUTION MID-IR ASTRONOMY AT CONCORDIA.
Ferrari-toniolo Marco
C.N.R. Istituto Astrofisica Spaziale e Fisica Cosmica

Along recent years several projects have been presented in order to utilize for Astronomical purposes the Italian-French Scientific Station now in construction at Dome C. In the infrared domain, the choice among the near-ir or the 10 and 20um range, implies a substantial different attitude in the realization of the telescope and the Cameras. The extreme conditions of an high plateau site, suggest an a-priori choice of the best scientific objectives and, accordingly, the needed instrumentation. On the other way, between the scientific objectives that take benefit from the use in the antarctic site, we must give priority to those producing results that cannot be obtained easily in "temperate" conditions.
In this presentation I would like to strengthen the mid-ir option not only because never experienced before in Antarctica, but also because it could be the right way to begin a systematic detailed description of the early phases of formation phenomena, due to the involved temperatures. I would like to analize some exemples that push in favour of an antarctic mid-ir large instrument capable of subarcsec spatial resolution and high sensitivity imaging; an example of a simplified structure in a quasi-drift scan observing mode will be given.

 

IAU01158 COMPARISON OF SST OF THE SP WITH OTHER 17 SITES ON EARTH.
Echevarria Juan
Instituo de Astronomia, UNAM

We make a careful comparison of Seein Site Testing of18 places around the globe, made with DIMM detectors. We discuss different parameters such as height above the ground of measurements,integration time, duration of campaign, altitude. Whenever possible we correct the median by these factors an present a comprehensive comparison of the best oberving places with other limiting factors such as ascessibility to the Site.
Michel Raul , Costero Rafael

 

IAU01259 THE LOW ATMOSPHERE TURBULENCE AT DOME C
Travouillon Tony
UNSW

In the search for the ultimate ground-base astronomical site, Antarctica is being extensively studied and has already shown a large amount of advantages over temperate sites currently hosting the largest telescopes. Within the continent, Dome C differentiates itself by being on a local maximum part of the Antarctic plateau. In consequence, the lower part of the atmosphere suffers less from the katabatic wind which is the main cause of seeing in Antarctica. Here, we present the first turbulence profiles taken at Dome C in winter using a SODAR. This instrument is part of the site testing AASTINO project deployed in 2002/2003 by the University of New South Wales and in collaboration with the IPEV and Italiantartide. We discuss the implications of the turbulence for astronomy and compare it with the previously and similarly studied South Pole site.

Ashley Michael C, Burton Michael G, Storey John W

 

IAU01260 RESULTS OF SEEING MEASUREMENTS AT THE SOUTH POLE
Travouillon Tony
UNSW

In order to further the statistics of the seeing conditions at the South Pole station in Antarctica, the University of New South Wales (UNSW) and the Australian National University (ANU) have installed a fully automated Shack-Hartmann wavefront sensor as part of their site testing campaign in Antarctica. This instrument uses a differential motion technique across an array of sub-apertures in order to calculate the seeing. We present the results taken in 2001 as well as an analysis of the time variation of this parameter. Ashley Michael C, Burton Michael G, Conroy Peter , Hovey Gary , Jarnyk Mark , Storey John W, Sutherland Ralph

 

IAU01406 AN AST/RO SURVEY OF THE COALSACK
Walsh Wilfred
Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

Using the AST/RO submillimetre telescope at 230, 460-492 and 806-809GHz, we have imaged a part of the prominent and relatively nearby southern molecular cloud complex, the Coalsack. Unlike other prominent dark clouds such as Perseus, Taurus and Auriga, the Coalsack shows no evidence of collapse leading to star formation. Using AST/RO we have produced images with sufficient spatial and velocity resolution to probe the cloud dynamics on small scales. We hope to determine whether star formation has simply not yet been triggered, or whether the dark clouds are supported against collapse by turbulent motions. Our observations reveal diffuse CO emission. as well as several very dense molecular cores whose nature is addressed by way of LVG analyses.

 

IAU01407 HELIOSEISMOLOGY FROM SOUTH POLE: PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE
Jefferies Stuart M
University of New Mexico

From the early 1980's through to the middle of the 1990's
helioseismic observations from South Pole played a significant
role in improving our understanding of the Sun's interior.
Not only with fundamental measurements, such as the determination of the internal sound speed and rotational profiles, but also with the development of important techniques such as time-distance analysis. However, the advent of global networks of observing sites and space-based instruments in the mid-1990s eventually led to the end of this "golden era" for South Pole Solar Observatory (SPSO) for traditional helioseismology. The Austral summer of 2002/2003 saw the ressurection of SPSO for a new generation of helioseismic observations to probe the characteristics of the solar atmosphere. This paper describes these new observations and discusses how they might evolve in the future.

 

IAU01614 CO 2-1 MAPS OF WOLF-RAYET STAR ENVIONMENTS
Tothill Nicholas F
Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory

We present CO 2-1 maps of the surroundings of five Wolf-Rayet stars. Previous optical observations have shown that they are surrounded by gaseous shells; mm-wave observations of WR16 show a large shell of molecular gas, but detailed analysis is hamstrung by the small size of the map. With AST/RO, we are able to make large maps of the vicinities of all five stars in a short time. The abundance and morphology of CO around these stars have implications for their evolutionary history. Marston Anthony P, Martin Christopher L

 

IAU01649 COBBER: LOOKING FOR CLEAR NIGHT SKIES AT DOME C, ANTARCTICA
Dempsey Jessica T
School of Astrophysics and Optics, University of New South Wales

COBBER is a prototype cloud observing instrument that has been designed for the rigours of unattended, high altitude sites on the Antarctic Plateau, such as Dome C and Dome A. A 10-micron thermopile detector looks out through a ZnSe, Ar-coated hemispherical lens, providing approximately a 30 degree field of view on the sky. Installed in mid-January at Dome C, COBBER has been collecting data autonomosly from that time, sending its data back twelve times a day via an ARGOS satellite link. These results are presented here. During the remaining daylight hours, COBBER's data has been successfully correlated with images from a webcamera installed at the same time at the station. COBBER's measurements of cloud cover over Dome C during the site's unattended winter months will provide the first idea of the site's potential for future astronomical projects. Storey John W, Ashley Michael C

 

IAU01657 THE AUTOMATED ASTROPHYSICAL SITE TESTING INFANT OBSERVATORY
Lawrence Jon S
University of New South Wales

The AASTINO is an autonomous remote observatory deployed to Dome C on the Antarctic plateau in the 2003 summer for the purpose of collecting data on the atmospheric characteristics of the site. Heat and power for the AASTINO are provided by a stirling engine running on Jet-A1 fuel and, while the sun is up, two solar panels. Up to six instruments can be located on the roof. A supervisor computer, running under Linux, automates the complete system and sends back instrument, engine, and health and status data via an Iridium satellite link. The computer also allows command and control of the instruments and power system from Sydney, Australia. In the event of a communications failure the AASTINO can operate completely autonomously, saving data on-site. Ashley Michael C, Burton Michael G, Storey John W

 

IAU01658 HISTORY OF ASTROPHYSICS IN ANTARCTICA
Maddison Sarah T
Swinburne University

We examine the historical development of astrophysical science in Antarctica from the early 20th century until today. We find three temporally overlapping eras with each having a rather distinct beginning. These are the astrogeological era of meteorite discovery, the high energy era of particle detectors, and the photon astronomy era of microwave, sub-mm and infrared telescopes, sidelined by a few optical niche experiments. The favourable atmospheric and geophysical conditions are briefly examined, followed by an account of the major experiments and a summary of their results. A scientific effectiveness analysis of the various projects is presented quantitatively and we conclude with an outlook of what is to come in the 21st century.
Indermuehle Balthasar T, Burton Michael C

 

IAU01660 AFOS: PROBING THE UV-VISIBLE POTENTIAL OF ANTARCTIC PLATEAU
Dempsey Jessica T
School of Astrophysics and Optics, University of New South Wales

AFOS (Antarctic Fibre Optic Spectrometer) is a 30cm Newtonian telescope which injects light through six 30m long optical fibres onto a 240-800nm spectrograph and 1024x256 pixel CCD camera. First deployed to Admundsen-Scott base in the summer of 1998, the telescope is mounted on a dual-telescope alt-az mount and has been designed to probe the suitability of the atmosphere above South Pole for astronomy in the UV and Visible wavelength regions.Improved and refitted in 2000/2001, AFOS has successfully collected data from the 2000 lunar eclipse above the South Pole and this data is presented here. A season of data observing a number of bright, standard A and O-type stars was collected during the winter of 2002, and continues during the winter months of 2003. These observations have been designed to probe the UV-cutoff wavelength, atmospheric absorption due to oxygen and water, and the effect of auroral emissions on observations. The initial results of these obervations are also presented. Storey John W, Ashley Michael C, Burton Michael G, Jarnyk Mark , Hovey Gary

 

IAU01664 ADAPTIVE OPTICS PERFORMANCE FROM ANTARCTICA
Lawrence Jon S
University of New South Wales

The Antarctic plateau is known to be a premier site for astrophysical observations in the infrared due to the very low sky background. It is also known to have an extremely low turbulence profile which has been previously shown to increase the useful field of view of a telescope equipped with an adaptive optics system. The current paper presents a detailed error budget calculation comparing adaptive optics performance from 2 m and 8 m Antarctic plateau infrared telescopes with similar telescopes operated in an atmosphere characteristic of Mauna Kea.

 

IAU01825 MILLIMETRE AND SUB-MILLIMETRE ASTRONOMY ANTARCTIC CENTRE
Sironi Giorgio
University of Milano Bicocca

Tests made over the last ten years at various sites show that the Antarctic Plateau is the most convenient place for ground based observations of the sky at mm and sub-mm wavelength. The reason for that is the unique combination of elevation, low water vapour content and stabilty of the atmospheric conditions. Better conditions can be found only in space, but costs are definitely higher. A place where these opportunities are presently exploited is CARA at South Pole: unfortunately the capabilities of CARA are barely sufficient for the US community. Therefore it seems now time to evaluate the possibilty of creating a new center, the Antarctic Center for Millimetric and Sub-millimetric Astrophysics (ACMSA). Based in Dome C it will complement CARA and offer additional opportunities to the international astrophysical community. To go in this direction we propose a Working Group which will:

Goal of this Working Group will be a document, to be submitted to National and International polar and astronomical organizations. et al

 

IAU01834 CMB OBSERVATIONS FROM THE ANTARCTIC PLATEAU
Sironi Giorgio
University of Milano Bicocca

The Milano Radio Group has experience of observations of the Cosmic Microwave Background from the Antarctic Plateau (Southpole, Dome C, Terra Nova Bay): search for Polaization and for Spectral Distortions. We present here our current plans for new observations in the microwave and millimetric band.
Boella Giuliano , Gervasi Massimo , Tartari Andrea , Zannoni Mario

 

IAU01880 AIRO: THE ANTARCTIC INFRARED OBSERVATORY
Jackson James M
Boston University

The Antarctic Infrared Observatory (AIRO) We aim to exploit the unique conditions on the Antarctic Plateau by establishing a new permanent national facility, the Antarctic Infrared Observatory. AIRO will be optimized for wide-field imaging in the thermal infrared. The unique conditions in Antarctica provide several advantages, such as extrememly low thermal backgrounds, long periods of darkness, and very stable skies. Because it requires an aperture of only ~2 meters to achieve similar sensitivities as the 8-meter telescopes, an Antarctic telescope is cost-effective. Moreover, upgrades to mid-infrared, spectroscopic, or polarimatric instruments can be implemented rapidly and relatively cheaply. The large field of view and excellent sensitivity of AIRO are optimally suited for the first deep, widefield surveys and global studies in the 3 to 5 micron waveband. With this unique capability, AIRO will make important observations of protoplanetary disks, the Magellanic clouds, brown dwarfs, and star-forming regions. Clemens Dan P, Bania Thomas M, Tollestrup Eric V

 

IAU01870 NOV. 23 TOTAL SOLAR ECLIPSE OBSERVATION FROM ANTARCTICA
Stoev Alexey
Public Astronomical Observatory

PROGRAMME OF THE NOVEMBER 23/24 TOTAL SOLAR ECLIPSE OBSERVATION FROM ANTARCTICA
A. Stoev1, P. Muglova2
1Yu. Gagarin Public Astronomical Observatory, Stara Zagora, Bulgaria
2Central Solar Terrestrial Influences Laboratory - Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Stara Zagora Department, Bulgaria


Observational tasks, methods and instrumentation of the Total Solar Eclipse (TSE) South PoleÕ 2003 program are presented in the paper. Photographic and video observations of the Sun during the different phases of the TSE are included in the programme. Basic aims of the programme are in the following directions:
Investigation of the solar corona structure and microstructure, dynamics and interrelation between different coronal elements and processes in time. Dust corona investigation. Experiments connected with atmospheric optic measurements, actinometry and meteorology during the TSE.

 

IAU02058 THE ANTARCTIC PLANET INTERFEROMETER
Swain Mark R
Jet Propulsion Laboratory

The Antarctic Planet Interferometer is a concept designed to detect and characterize extrasolar planets by exploiting the unique potential of the best accessible site on Earth for thermal infrared interferometry. The three high-precision interferometric techniques under development for extrasolar planet detection and characterization (astrometry, differential phase and, nulling) all benefit substantially from slow, low-altitude turbulence, low water vapor content, and low temperature found on the Antarctic plateau. At the best of these locations, such as the Concordia base being developed at dome C, an interferometer with two-meter diameter class apertures has the potential to deliver space-like performance. Walker Chris K, Storey John W, Traub Wesley A, Lloyd James P

 

IAU02206 NEW SUBMM SITE TESTING RESULTS FROM DOME C, ANTARCTICA
Calisse Paolo G
School of Physics, UNSW, Sydney, NSW, Australia

The very low humidity level, the high atmospheric stability and high altitude, render the Antarctic Plateau one of the best sites of the world for (sub)millimeter observations. Among the various stations available in Antarctica, the French-Italian Concordia, sitting on one of the top of the Plateau, Dome C, is expected to achieve the best sub-millimeter observing conditions available from ground in the world. A winter-over station is under construction and would be available by winter 2006. SUMMIT (SUb-MilliMeter Tipper), a radiometer operating at 350 ƒÊm at the site, has been installed there in summer 2002-03 and is currently monitoring the submillimeter sky opacity. The instrument is accommodated on the roof of the AASTINO (Automated Astrophysical Site Testing INfant Observatory), a module featuring full automated control and data download capabilities. SUMMIT has been already operating at Dome C in summer 2000-01 and at South Pole during winter 2001 and 2002. New results from Dome C will be presented, with an evaluation of the pwv (precipitable water vapor) level at the site. A comparison with data obtained with similar instruments at other site suitable for (sub)millimeter observations (Mauna Kea, Chajnantor and South Pole) will be also carried out. Ashley Michael C, Burton Michael G, Lawrence Jon R, Phillips Michael A, Peterson Jeffrey B, Radford Simon H

 

IAU02238 EARTH AS AN EXTRASOLAR PLANET: SOUTH POLE ADVANTAGES
Traub Wesley A
Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics

We discuss the advantages of the South Pole as an observing site for measuring Earthshine, light reflected from the Earth to the dark side of the Moon, as a test of future extrasolar planet observations. Kilston Steven , Turner Edwin L, Seager Sara

 

IAU02294 ASTROMETRY WITH THE ANTARCTIC PLANET INTERFEROMETER
Lloyd James P
California Institute of Technology

The turbulence above Antarctic Plateau sites is fundamentally different from mid latitude observatories. Since the Antarctic turbulenceis dominated by low altitude boundary layer effects, the optical effect of the turbulence is coherent over very large angles. Using a precision phase referenced dual star interferometer, this coherence can be exploited for high accuracy differential astrometry in the micro-arcsecond regime, allowing the detection and characterization of planetary companions to nearby stars. Accurate performance prediction for such an interferometer requires precise measurements of the turbulence profile. The current state of knowledge, and possible future measurements of the antarctic turbulence profile will be discussed. Storey John W, Swain Mark R, Traub Wes A, Walker Chris K

 

IAU02332 THE EXPLORER OF DIFFUSE GALACTIC EMISSION
Silverberg Robert F
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD USA

Measurements of the large-scale anisotropy of the Cosmic Infared Background (CIB) can be used to determine the characteristics of the distribution of galaxies at the largest spatial scales. With this information important tests of galaxy evolution models and primordial structure growth are possible. In this paper, we describe the scientific goals, instrumentation, and observing strategy of EDGE, a mission using an Antarctic Long Duration Balloon (LDB) platform. EDGE will observe the anisotropy in the CIB in 8 spectral bands from 270 GHz-1.5 THz with 6 arcminute angular resolution over a region ~400 square degrees. EDGE uses a one-meter class off-axis telescope and an array of Frequency Selective Bololmeters (FSB) to provide the compact and efficient multi- color, high sensitivity radiometer required to achieve its scientific objectives. Cheng Edward S, Cottingham David A, Fixsen Dale J, Knox Lloyd , Meyer Stephan S, Timbie Peter , Wilson Grant

 

IAU02431
COMPACT WIDE-FIELD ASTRONOMICAL TELESCOPES FOR DOME C

Viotti Roberto F.
Istituto di Astrofisica Spaziale e Fisica Cosmica, CNR

This is a joint project involving several Institutes. Our projects include the design and realization of compact wide-field telescopes based on the IASF two-mirror, three-reflection design (2MTRT), for high altitude ground observations and for space-borne experiments. We present the preliminary tests made with a 45 cm F/5 active optics warping telescope and with a 30 cm F/3 low cost telescope, and discuss the potential of the design for astrophysical research at Dome Concordia, including the discovery of potentially hazarduous NEAs, extrasolar planet transits, and systematic studies of stellar variability in rich fields.

 

IAU02001
THE EXPLORER OF DIFFUSE GALACTIC EMISSION (EDGE)

Robert F Silverberg
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD USA

Measurements of the large-scale anisotropy of the Cosmic Infrared Background (CIB) can be used to determine the characteristics of the distribution of galaxies at the largest spatial scales. With this information important tests of galaxy evolution models and primordial structure growth are possible. In this paper, we describe the scientific goals, instrumentation, and observing strategy of EDGE, a mission using an Antarctic Long Duration Balloon (LDB) platform. EDGE will observe the anisotropy in the CIB in 8 spectral bands from 270 GHz - 1.5 THz with 6
arcminute angular resolution over a region ~400 square degrees. EDGE uses a one-meter class off-axis telescope and an array of Frequency Selective Bolometers (FSB) to provide the compact and efficient multi- color, high sensitivity radiometer required to achieve its scientific objectives. Cheng Edward S, Cottingham David A, Fixsen Dale J, Knox Lloyd, Meyer Stephan S, Timbie Peter, Wilson Grant

 

INTERFEROMETRIC SPECTROPHOTOMETRY OF PEGASIDES: APISD: THE ANTARCTIC PLATEAU INTERFEROMETER SCIENCE DEMONSTRATOR
V. Coudè du Foresto
LESIA, Paris Observatory

We propose a science demonstrator for the Antarctic Plateau Interferometer. It is a comparatively much simpler system than the API but dedicated to the goal of obtaining the first low-resolution spectra in the thermal infrared of a few 'hot Jupiter' type exoplanets. It would provide a unique platform to acquire operational experience on antarctic stellar interferometry, and build up an extensive database on the relevant site properties, as a preparation for API. M. Swain, JPL, J. Schneider, LUTH, Paris Obs., F. Allard, ENS Lyon


IAU02660 FTS OPACITY MEASUREMENTS OF THE SOUTH POLE SUB-MM SKY
Chamberlin, Richard
Caltech Submillimeter Observatory

A submillimetre Fourier Transform Spectrometer (FTS) was used over the 2001 and 2002 winter seasons to acquire wide bandwidth (300 GHz < freq. < 2 THz) measurements of the atmospheric opacity. Comparisons were made with other ongoing measurements to allow inference of typical wintertime observing statistics.

 

FUTURE MEASUREMENTS OF THE LOCAL SEEING IN ANTARCTICA
Juan Manuel Echevarria Roman
Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico

A discussion on the methods to provide better statistics with well trusted data. We propose to make further measurements of the local seeing with our DIMM monitor of the Observatorio Astronomico Nacional. We have a decade of experience at the San Pedro Martir Observatory where climatological conditions are sometimes severe and we have developed some methods to secure better data unaffected by climatological variables.


UNSW | School of Physics | Department of Astrophysics and Optics | Astronomy in Antarctica


 
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